A Book of Trees

Exhibitions

Ink and brush paintings on paper, VR short film, artist book

The exhibition combines two different stories for looking at trees. The first is a technical exploration of how a machine learning system struggles to produce the three-dimensional shape of a tree, and how observing this process can give us an opportunity to reflect upon new computational paradigms that are reshaping our future. The second is a reflection on the history of imported trees in Hong Kong and how an Australian artist finds himself surrounded by the trees of his childhood.

[Solo Exhibition]  

Videotage Hong Kong
17th September - 8th October
Opening Reception and Book Launch 25th September,3pm
Venue: Videotage | Unit 13, Cattle Depot Artist Village, 63 Ma Tau Kok Road, Ma Tau Kok, Kowloon, Hong Kong

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Current installation of VR short film and paintings at Videotage, Hong Kong

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Advice for Feng Shui Forestry

Clear the trees from the mountain
and plant sacred forests around its base.
Cultivate bands of trees along the rover
to make sure that the ocean can't be seen from the Ancestral Hall.
Extend the bands down the ridge to the floodplain
so that you can bury your dead out of view.
If any houses are exposed to the North,
turn them in to face the ridge,
and plant Feng Shui trees behind you home
to protect you from poisonous air.

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Advice for Picturesque Forestry

Naked of trees, the barren mountains 
will bring disease,
and so must be improved.
If the surviving native trees are not enough,
look to Mauritius, Australia and India -
Eucalyptus Robusta, Melanuca Quinquinerva and the Norfolk Island Pine
can dry the putrid waters
that seep from the rotting granite
and unproductive rice paddies.
With botanical imports,
Nature can be restored,
and you can make a home.

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Advice for Administrative Forestry

Give each tree a name and a number,
to catalogue and preserve the alien forest,
because trees can reduce stress and condition the air.
By the roadside, I can see the Melaluca that lined the lagoon
where I used to swim with my sister,
and walking up the hill I can smell the Eucalyptus forest
where I walked with my grandparents,
and where we buried their ashes.
 

Artist talk at Videotage Hong Kong, 2021

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林詩三首

 

給風水林的忠告

 

伐盡萬山樹皆亡

原地種植聖林生

沿河栽種防風林

先祖免受海風侵

滿山蒼翠下平原

逝者長眠視線外

凡有坐南向北宅

前後翻轉向山脊

風水林後院坐鎮

家宅免受病毒侵

給如畫樹林的忠告

 

荒山無植樹影渺

漫山瘟疫漸滋生

唯故土原木稀疏

須開荒植地造林

看南洋諸島古國

松桉常綠白千層

吸盡花岩石隙露

乾涸荒田敗噁流

水隨眾木歸大地

濃翠蔽日現生機

吾等安身綠蔭下

深居禪林樂如畫

給林務管理人員的忠告

 

為樹木逐一編號贈名

盡心記錄保護絕世山林

樹木可紓憂療愁

教人吐故納新

沿路走來

見潟湖兩旁白千層

憶起年少時與姐姐在湖中暢泳

緩步登山

翠密樹林幽香撲鼻

憶起與祖父母散步的午後時光

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