'Chuan Kui' A Solo Exhibition by Ono Kang 14 April - 27 May, 2018 at Hin Bus Depot Gallery. Opening: 14 April, 7pm until late
Exhibition Description:_ Let’s talk about breath. What does it mean to breathe - or in the words of my native Hokkien language, Chuan Kui?
As you enter, please enter with an open heart and take away what you can from the stories ahead. Stories that I would like to share with you, stories that shaped my life. As you do, please be aware of your Chuan Kui. - Ono
About the artist:_ Ono is a native Penangite, born and bred by the jetties of Georgetown where his family work as junk ship sailors and traders in the charcoal industry. His family was his biggest influence and he wanted to inherit his grandfather’s junk ship when he grew up and sail with them around the region importing and trading charcoal. However, that ambition was never meant to be as the 90s saw the end of the sunset industry.
Ono is dyslexic but was never diagnosed of his symptom, as this condition was not known in the local community. As a result he didn’t received the help he needed and dropped out of school at a young age. Restless in Penang, he started travelling at the tender age of 13. First to Singapore and then further and further away from home, but no matter where he goes, he considers Penang his home and no other.
Ono has always been an avid collector of things since young. One of his favourite sport as a child was to collect fallen kites. He returned to settle in Penang as a tattoo artist in his early twenties. Seeing the huge modernization change that has taken over his hometown was perhaps a little saddening and he started collecting old items in Georgetown – furniture, household items, gadgets, even factory machines. Anything that reminds him of his childhood and the old Georgetown that he grew up in. His collection is his way of remembering his own heritage and the history of his culture.
As his collection grew, Ono started to build sculptures and installations out of them. Almost like building a diary out of his memory treasures. One of Ono’s wishes was always to be able to write. To be able to put to paper how he feels and thoughts he would like to express. These artworks are his words.
Upon reaching 40, Ono is ready to take on a new chapter in life. He has a young family in tow and they would be journeying to a new country soon. This exhibition is his personal tribute to his home, his family, his heritage, and his 40 years of living. Here’s to his next chapter!