Para Site announces the opening of its newly expanded space that focuses on experimental, process-driven projects on the tenth floor of its current Quarry Bay location. To inaugurate the new space, Para Site is proud to present a solo exhibition by Hong Kong artist Kong Chun Hei, ‘PS’ (12 May–18 June 2023; opening reception 11 May, 6–8pm), curated by Kobe Ko consisting of a newly commissioned cycle of site-specific works.
‘PS’ refers to the postscript commonly found at the end of written communication, which the artist regards as paratext that not only provides alternative readings, but is able to also open new lines of inquiry in relation to the main text. This attention towards paratext serves to disrupt and provoke new forms of production beyond the status quo. The presentation establishes a tension within the space, and looks to probe at areas of daily life that remain unquestioned to symbolise the connection between Para Site’s newly expanded tenth floor space to the existing space on the 22nd floor.
As the inaugural exhibition of Para Site’s new space, ‘PS’ reflects on the institution’s complex history as an artist-founded alternative space. The exhibition contemplates Para Site’s emergence as a leading contemporary art institution in relation to the struggles of balancing international and local interests amidst a rapidly changing social context.
The commissioned installation Stairs (2023) makes use of the debris and scrap material gleaned from the renovation process of the new space designed by COLLECTIVE. Creating a passage between two previously separated rooms, the installation acts as stepping stones for visitors to cross a threshold into the newly connected spaces, and will remain as a permanent installation after the conclusion of the exhibition.
The work of Kong often revolves around the interpretation of materials and the deciphering of symbols. At different moments, the minimal presentation appears playful or satirical, which functions as a cover to different forms of critique expressed by the artist. Elaborating on the ‘Studio + Archive Project’, an initiative established between 2021 and 2022, in January 2023, Para Site invited Kong to become an artist-in-residence by occupying the tenth floor space as a temporary studio.
Over a period of four months, Kong has documented this process through work logs on Para Site’s social media platforms while developing his ideas for the site-specific project. In February 2023, he hosted an open studio event in collaboration with the sound performance collective Haptic Collision.