I Heart Studios caught up with Agnes Wu, the Gallery Manager of Soluna Fine Art, about the challenges she encountered when preparing the latest exhibition, “Once Upon”, and the significant concerns when curating an art show.
- Can you tell us your background?
I completed a Bachelor of Art (BA) in Fine Art (Studio Art) at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Since graduation, I have been working in galleries for more than 4 years. I discovered my passion for working in the gallery while working a part-time job in which I had to promote artists and art pieces to audiences. This working experience had confirmed my decision to begin my career in the art industry.
Some may question my identity as an artist. When we define an artist, we don’t just use the quantity of the art pieces as a measurement, but the one’s commitment and perseverance to keep working forward on their art practice and how they integrate art into their daily lives.
I enjoy nurturing artists through curating exhibitions. I believe my experience can help me better understand their journey of art marking and help them bring out the messages to the audience in an effective way.
- How do you come up with ideas for exhibitions?
My curatorial ideas are mainly developed by the content and the context of the artist’s workpieces rather than I set a particular theme and work within it. When I curate a group exhibition, I will look for the commonalities between the artists and consider who will be the leading artists for the exhibition. In the next stage, I will invite other artists whose artworks share the same message/vision with the theme to participate in the exhibition.
- How do you find new artists?
It’s all about how active and engaged you are in the artist community. I follow the artists’ latest updates, and I often visit art exhibitions and speak to the artists if possible.
- What is (are) the key thing(s) to consider when curating an exhibition?
Harmony is one of the key things I will consider when curating a group exhibition. It is an art to balance and complement each artist’s works while avoiding sending confusing messages to the audiences. Each artist has their character and personal experiences. Thus, each art piece has its uniqueness, and I don’t want any artists to feel neglected in the exhibition.
For a general exhibition, it is crucial to deliver the essence of the art pieces, find the right angle to present to the audience and convey the messages behind the artwork. Storytelling is another issue that we have to focus on by linking up the stories to arouse people’s interest.
- Being the Gallery Manager of the Soluna Fine Art current exhibition, “Once Upon”, have you encountered any challenges during the preparation stage? What kind of takeaway message would you expect your audiences to receive after seeing the exhibition?
The most challenging part was the tight timeline. The exhibition was initially planned to host in July, but it had to move to March at the end. So we had to prepare everything in a very short period. I’m so grateful that I had a passionate and helpful team to prepare everything, and we finally made it happen!
The aim of presenting the “Once Upon 喁喁細語” exhibition is to celebrate the Women’s History Month of March. We invited 6 Hong Kong female artists to present their artworks to address the meaning of gender equality in creativity. I expect audiences to feel the female artists’ creative power after visiting the exhibition.
Note: The “Once Upon 喁喁細語” exhibition is on view from now to 23 April 2022 by appointment.
- How do photography and other art forms work together and influence each other?
Photography has influenced painting in different ways, and clearly, photorealism paintings are hugely impacted by photography. In the modern era, photography is an independent art medium. With the improvement in today’s mobile camera technology, everyone can easily become a photographer, and I believe this is the starting point for everyone to embark on their art journey.
Agnes Wu BIO:
Born and raised in Hong Kong, Agnes holds a Bachelor of Art (BA) degree in Fine Art (Studio Art) from the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and she aims to promote Asian Contemporary Art to the public. Her gallery work experience allows her to participate in over 40 exhibitions, including: “Hsiao Chin’s Coming Home Retrospective Exhibition” in China Art Museum at Shanghai (2018), “Pulse/ Thread Exhibition” with Hsiao Chin, Qu Leilei, Liu Guofu, Chloe Ho and Wang Yichu in Art Taipei 2018, “Since we last met” Joint Exhibition of local emerging artists at Cheer Bell Gallery (2020) and “Ode to the Moon” at Korean Culture Center in Hong Kong (2021).
Please visit https://www.solunafineart.com/for the updates and exhibition details.