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Hong Kong Arts Center (香港艺术中心)
2014.06.06 Fri - 2014.06.29 Sun
Opening Exhibition
05/06/2014 10:00
2 Harbour Road, Wanchai, Hong Kong 香港湾仔港湾路2号
Tel No: (852) 2582 0200 Fax: 2802 0798 General Enquires: (852) 2582 0200 Lost & Found: (852) 2582 0242
Opening Hours
Monday to Sunday 8:00am – 11:00pm
Closed on the first three days of the Lunar New Year
Closed when a Typhoon Signal No.8 or higher is hoisted
Ms. Connie Lam 林淑仪

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Look Left – Look Right: Solo Exhibition of Xenia Hausner
[Press Release]

The Hong Kong Arts Centre is exhibiting works by the well-known Austrian artist Xenia Hausner. Her new series explores the cultural space between West and East.

West and East: Xenia Hausner has made a fresh assessment of this broad realm of globalized modernity. In 20 middle and large format portraits she plays on reciprocal perceptions with great sophistication and depth. What seems at first to be a snapshot of daily life is in truth the multiple refraction and reflection of life in a world in which cultures are entwined in another.

“Look Left – Look Right” is the title of this exhibition at the renowned Hong Kong Arts Centre. It is Xenia Hausner’s first solo show in Hong Kong, a location that has established itself in the past years as a new focus in the global world of art.

In her new series, “Look Left – Look Right” , Xenia Hausner, at home in Vienna and Berlin, is mainly concerned with the seismographic recognition of a mutual curiosity and attraction between West and East. Her typically expressive technique does not offer distinct and realistically interpretable scenes. Rather, she manipulates elements from various regions and cultural environments into a new, fragmented reality: an Asian and a European girl in school uniforms, three Western women in front of a North Korean propaganda poster, a young couple beneath Chinese lanterns and neon lights. Hausner has simulated all these scenes in her studio using models. As an echo of Hong Kong’s infamous “Cage People” the artist had a cramped coop constructed. In her version, however, the cage is the shared quarters of an Asian and a European woman. The pictures tell stories that raise more questions than they answer.

In her new series Hausner draws on earlier works, for example, her series “Damage” that was displayed in a solo exhibition at the Shanghai Art Museum in 2011. Moreover: “Look Left – Look Right” is the most recent contribution towards a continuing discourse in the world of art on mutual perceptions – East and West. Roy Lichtenstein looked eastward in the 1990s when he used his dot technique to explore the “insides” of Chinese landscape painting. Conversely the prominent Chinese painter Liu Xiaodong turned westward when he took to the streets of the Austrian Eisenerz area for a month in 2012, making portraits of locals using the techniques of socialist realism he had been trained in.

Hausner studied set-designing at the Academy of Visual Arts in Vienna and at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. She designed the sets for over one hundred theater and opera productions, including some at the Burgtheater in Vienna and Covent Garden in London. Since 1990 she has dedicated herself to painting, graphic and mixed media. Her works have been exhibited internationally at galleries and museums – in New York, Vienna, Berlin, Munich, Shanghai etc. In the year 2000 she was awarded the Ernst Barlach Prize.

Xenia Hausner currently lives and works in Berlin and Vienna.

“It is not my goal to present clear solutions, but to be precise in fragments whose mystery I am unable to solve.”

Xenia Hausner

“I need the “live moment” for painting, I have to really look at a dimple in the flesh or the skin squashed on the windscreen. My painting thrives on that carnal moment which I see and translate.”

Xenia Hausner