With a strong visual language, Stephen Wong uses a vibrant but harmonious colour palette and the spontaneity and painterly approach of plein air painters to capture the effects of nature. Equipped with a sketchbook and some paints, Wong embarks on long hikes across Hong Kong’s scenic landmarks, documenting from different viewpoints many of the country’s parks and coastal areas.
During the pandemic Wong drew inspiration from his virtual travels in Google Earth, painting from satellite images, as well as his own memories of places he had previously visited.Wong was able to visit and paint various iconic locations such as the Dolomites, Mont Saint Michel, and Mount Fuji, without leaving his studio in Hong Kong.
Characteristic of Wong’s artistic practice is the expressive palette, depicting an emotional sensitivity to colour and saturation that transmits intimate sensibilities, evoking notions of silence, introspection, wistful harmony, and a pure joy for life. Always present in the compositions are tiny whispers of human presence, through which the viewer is transported within the painting themselves, as a sojourner embarked on a trip around the world. The artist explains, “I don’t have too much of a plan or a premise of a theme before painting. But usually what interests me is the intervention of humans in nature. For example, some very tiny hikers walking on the trails far away or some tunnels that appear in between two mountains or the people standing at the observation deck”.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Born in 1986, Stephen Wong Chun Hei is a Hong Kong based artist. He graduated from the Fine Art Department (CUHK) in 2008. His recent solo exhibitions include Stephen Wong Chun Hei: Maclehose Trail, Bonhams, Hong Kong (2022), Indoor Hundred Islands, Touch Gallery, Hong Kong (2021) and A Grand Tour in Google Earth, Gallery EXIT, Hong Kong (2021), as well as the duo show Beside the City alongside artist Yeung Hok Tak, with Gallery EXIT, Hong Kong (2019). In 2021, Wong showcased his work on Unit London’s online viewing room, Platform. The artist is scheduled to have his debut solo exhibition at the gallery in 2022. Some group exhibitions include The Breath of Landscape at the Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong, in 2019 and These Painters' Painters at ROH Projects, Jakarta, in 2018. Wong’s paintings are collected by private collectors and institutions, such as Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong Land and Swire.