afterbefore: images and sounds from Hong Kong

29 Jan 2020 – 9 Feb 2020

Regular hours

12:00 – 19:00
12:00 – 19:00
12:00 – 19:00
12:00 – 19:00
12:00 – 19:00
12:00 – 19:00
12:00 – 19:00

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an exhibition of photography, video, sound art, and the written word


Chinatown Soup is pleased to present afterbefore, an independent, multimedia exhibition that brings together a group of Hong Kong photographers, videographers, and sound artists with a group of writers, poets, and curators. Visual and sonic works are included alongside textual pieces. This exhibition is on view from January 29-February 9, 2020. Please join us for a reception on Friday, January 31 from 6-9pm and check @chinatownsoup on Instagram for related programming announcements.

The mission of the afterbefore project is to create a platform for Hong Kong artists to be seen and heard at this critical time; to open a more authentic, personal, and intimate window into the Hong Kong experience; and to generate communication, exchange, and dialogue with a global network.

Photography, video, and sound art are essential media in Hong Kong, as artists working with them consciously straddle the realms of documentary witnessing and visceral response. While the situation here continues to evolve and intensify, this project disengages from the confrontation and violence that is largely the purview of the international media in favor of focusing on movements as processes of mutual communication and concern, as well as of protest and resistance. In this way, afterbefore also highlights the universality and resonance that the Hong Kong experience holds for other citizens of the world.

Assembled artists demonstrate how Hong Kongers intercommunicate and relate within the landscape of their city. There are outside impressions that citizen protest actions erupted only this summer in response to a proposed extradition bill. However, Hong Kong citizens, including many artists, have undertaken a number of peaceful, evocative actions over the last 15 years in response to different social, economic, and political issues.

While the core focus of this project is on current events, works relating to earlier actions are also included, most notably the two-month long “Umbrella Movement” of 2014 which sought greater civic participation in the electoral process.

In addition to the core exhibition of artworks are texts by Hong Kong poets, writers, cultural figures, and anonymous contributors, as well as a special selection of zines created spontaneously during the last few months by artist collectives, students and other activists from all over Hong Kong.


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