December’s art exhibitions present art concepts and practices that challenge artistic and social conventions. Here’s what not to miss:

1. Flowers Gallery: Self

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Above Shen Wei, Self-portrait (Bent) (© Shen Wei, courtesy of Flowers Gallery)

New York-based Shanghainese artist Shen Wei is known for making intimate portraits of himself. In this solo show, Shen presents video and photography works from 2010 to the present that explore identity, memory and sexuality.

For instance, his nude self-portraits series I Miss You Already, “Self-portrait (Bent)” portrays a stretched body; Broken Sleeve, inspired by an emperor tearing off his sleeve to avoid waking his lover who is sleeping on it, examines the intertwining of power and submission.

From November 28 to February 27, 2021. 49 Tung Street, G/F, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong. Find out more at

2. Blindspot Gallery: The Palm at the End of the Mind

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Above Lau Hok Shing Hanison, Remote Island 1. (2020) (Courtesy of Blindspot Gallery and artist)

Hong Kong's So Wing Po and Lau Hok Shing Hanison, and Zhang Ruyi from Shanghai tap into the world of metaphysics, cosmology, organic nature, post-industrial cities and the human body through their sculptures and installations.

A highlight is So’s Earth Battery, created as a planetarium that imitates the sounds we hear before birth. She uses herbs from her family’s medicinal practice to create electrolytic soil for the transmission of electrical signals to cicadas’ bellies.

From November 17 to January 9, 2021. 15/F, Po Chai Industrial Building, 28 Wong Chuk Hang Road, Wong Chuk Hang, Hong Kong. Find out more at

3. de Sarthe: Double Fly Awkward Pay

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Above Courtesy of de Sarthe and the artists

Known for combining absurdist comedy and criticisms of society, culture and the art world, the artist group Double Fly Art Center presents a second exhibition. Featured is “double love and flied currency”, which is comprised of two and three-dimensional paintings that were formerly one continuous 33-metre-long artwork.

The gallery switches between normal and ultraviolet lights to show hidden bank notes, whose value varies significantly from the prices shown in the normal lighting to spotlight the nature of art markets.

From November 21 to January 23, 2021. 20/F, Global Trade Square, 21 Wong Chuk Hang Road, Wong Chuk Hang, Hong Kog. Find out more at

4. Karin Weber Gallery: Now Showing

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Above Karin Weber Gallery: Now Showing (Courtesy of the artist and Karin Weber Gallery)
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The group show by 11 local artists celebrates the cinema and the expanding role of digital media. Each artist has selected one film that is the most meaningful or memorable to them to be the inspiration behind their bespoke artworks.

The films capture the emotions, technological advancement and social changes of the generation of artists. Accompanying this exhibition are two talks that feature participating artists and professionals in the local film industry who will share their personal and creative processes.

From December 5 to January 23, 2021. 20 Aberdeen Street, Central, Hong Kong. Find out more at

5. Gagosian: Cold Mountain Clay

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Above Edmund de Waal, cold mountain, I. (© Edmund de Waal, Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates. Courtesy Gagosian)

English writer and potter Edmund de Waal creates porcelain works which function as “vessels” that carry human memories and experience. This exhibition showcases new and recent works inspired by the Cold Mountain poems by the monk Hanshan, a recluse on a Chinese mountaintop during the Tang Dynasty, who wrote poems on trees, rocks and cave walls and let the natural elements erode his verses.

Similarly, de Waal’s work is produced through a series of inscription and effacement, such as by brushing more slips on layers of golden leaf and poems written on kaolin-coated wood panel to create a haze of human memory. It addresses the passage of time and reflects on Hanshan’s monastic solitude.

From November 20 to January 9, 2021. 7/F Pedder Building, 12 Pedder Street, Central, Hong Kong. Find out more at

6. Tai Kwun: Wet feet __ dry feet: borders and games and Sneeze

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Above Mika Rottenberg, Cosmic Generator (Courtesy of the artist and Tai Kwun Contemporary)

Tai Kwun Contemporary is hosting the first solo shows in Hong Kong of two major contemporary artists: Francis Alÿs and Mika Rottenberg.

The former, a Belgium conceptual artist, presents recent works and newly commissioned videos set in Hong Kong, which are inspired by children’s games from around the world. The latter, an Argentina-born, New York-based video artist, imagines alternative realities through immersive video installations that explore labour, technology and some rather curious allergies.

Until February 2021. 10 Hollywood Road, Central, Hong Kong. Find out more at

7. Hong Kong Museum of Art: A Taste for Life: The Collection and Connoisseurship of Mr Low Chuck-tiew

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Above A Taste for Life at HKMoA. (Courtesy of The Hong Kong Museum of Art)
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Low Chuck-tiew (1911-1993) was a scholar and connoisseur famous for his knowledge of Chinese calligraphy and ink art from the late Ming and Qing dynasties. He left behind a huge number of these ancient artworks in what he called the Xubaizhai collection: the name Xubai was taken from a Qing dynasty calligrapher who Low admired, and zhai is the Mandarin word for a study.

The exhibition showcases more than 40 historical works from his collection and recounts how Low acquired the pieces.

Until February 24, 2021. 10 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong. Find out more at

8. White Cube: Takis

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Above Installation view of Insidos Light and Signals (1966-1981) (© the artist. Photo © White Cube Jon Lowe)

Self-taught Greek artist Panayiotis Vassilakis (1925-2019), or Takis, is known for his kinetic sculptures and public art. Following his exhibitions at Tate Modern and Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona, this Hong Kong show, the first in Asia, highlights his signature incorporation of electromagnetism with art.

His best-known series Signals, which he began in 1954 after moving to Paris, pieces together moving rods springing from a base topped with industrial fragments. They reference manmade and natural antennae that interact with their surroundings.

Until January 23, 2021. 50 Connaught Road Central, Central, Hong Kong. Find out more at

9. Simon Lee Gallery: Bulloch, Pryde: Sky, Rocks & Digits

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Above Josephine Pryde Gift For Me, Simon Lee Gallery Christmas 2014 (2), (2015). (Courtesy of the artist and Simon Lee Gallery)

Berlin-based artists Angela Bulloch and Josephine Pryde collaborate on this joint exhibition that explores the interplay between bodies and technology. Bulloch makes images and installations that blur the boundaries of the virtual and the real, while Pryde uses photography to interrogate the creation and consumption of visual culture.

Until January 9, 2021. 304, 3F The Pedder Building 12 Pedder Street, Central, Hong Kong. Find out more at

10. Hauser & Wirth: Takesada Matsutani

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Above Takesada Matsutani, Puffed up (2020) (Courtesy of Marc Domag and the artist)

A key member of the Gutai Art Association—the radical group that redefined art in post-war Japan by experimenting with unusual materials—Takesada Matsutani is most famous for his use of vinyl glue, which he employs to create bulbous, sensual forms reminiscent of human curves.
Since he moved to France in 1966, Matsutani has also worked extensively with graphite, building up individual strokes into vast expanses of metallic black graphite on mural-size paper. This exhibition includes new multimedia paintings, works on paper and a site-specific installation.
Until February 2021.16-15/F, 80 Queen’s Road Central, Central, Hong Kong. Find out more at

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