Young Mainland Chinese are moving to Hong Kong from all over China, leaving their homes because of family interests or in search of better education and career prospects. Such migrants find themselves in majority Chinese yet increasingly tense environments, often confronting entrenched ideas regarding ‘Mainlanders’. While often presented as a single group, the photographic portraits and interviews in ‘The Other Shore’ reveal individual lives, with diverse aspirations and attitudes towards Hong Kong. ‘The Other Shore’ asks how one’s sense of self is entwined with national identity, and how a host environment affects our outlook and everyday lives. Tay’s project also reflects on similar experiences of young educated Chinese elsewhere, negotiating a new place in the world.
Wei Leng Tay
Based in Singapore and Hong Kong, Wei Leng Tay’s work considers how socio-economics, history, family and the state intersect with notions of displacement and self-identity. She is best known for portraits taken in spaces familiar to her subjects, typically their home or workplace, or a significant place in the city where they live. Tay builds a relationship with her subjects through extensive interviews, some of which are recorded and presented as transcripts or audio installations with her photographs. In 2015, Tay was the recipient of the Poynter Fellowship at the Yale School of Art, and recently completed a residency with Vasl Artists’ Collective, Karachi. Tay’s work has been exhibited widely in Asia and internationally, and is held in several public collections, including: the National University of Singapore Museum, National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts, Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Kiyosato Museum of Photographic Arts, Japan, and the Hong Kong Heritage Museum.
Curated by Dr Olivier Krischer (Australian Centre on China in the World).
Exhibition dates: 31 March–15 July 2016
Gallery hours: 9am–5pm, Monday to Friday
Selected weekends: 10am–4pm (23–24 April, 11–12 June, and 9–10 July)
Wei Leng Tay's artist residency is supported by the ANU School of Art; prints for 'The Other Shore' have been produced in the ANU School of Art's Inkjet Research Facility, with the technical assistance of Jason O'Brien and Rowan Conroy. The exhibition production benefits from the expertise of Glenn Beattie and colleagues in ANU Facilities & Services. We also acknowledge event partners, Muse restaurant, in Canberra's East Hotel, and the National Portrait Gallery.