Stephen Wong Chun Hei Biography

Stephen Wong Chun Hei is recognised for his arresting landscape paintings of Hong Kong and well-known landmarks, based on the artist's hiking trips or satellite imagery in Google Earth, that create an immersive environment for imaginary travel.

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Artworks

Landmarks and familiar scenery are rendered otherworldly in Stephen Wong Chun Hei's paintings, which increasingly employ vivid and saturated hues. Wong's conception of painting as a way of travel resonates with 'Dream Journey', a concept in traditional Chinese painting that describes a person's experience of distant places by looking at painted landscapes from the comfort of their homes.

Landscapes

Although Wong began drawing at a young age, and had been interested in painting for a long time, he initially produced multimedia installations because his then-environment at the University of Hong Kong favoured conceptual art. The artist turned to painting after his graduation in 2008, first capturing landscapes from video games then shifting towards the hills and trees of Hong Kong.

Wong's paintings start from actual landscapes, but the artist does not attempt to replicate life, only creating reinterpretations of his subjects from his sketches and imagination. Playing with colours and perspective, and sometimes rearranging details of the topography, Wong paints resplendent scenery that has often been described as being dreamlike. His increasingly bright colour palettes animate the landscapes, 'suggesting there is something alive within every element and being' as Elaine YJ Zheng notes in Ocula Magazine.

The effect is pronounced in paintings like The Cloud Play (2016), in which masses of clouds spread over and through the tall trees, suspended in time, and Drive to the Cliff (2020), a nighttime painting that shows a small figure and a bonfire on the tip of the cliff.

Human Presence

Cyclists, campers, drivers, cars, and ships of minute scale wait to be discovered in Wong's paintings, drawing the viewer into the landscape and prompting them to travel the winding roads and strips of beaches. Bright greens and blues, with occasional pinks, further fuse reality with fantasy as with the paintings and works on paper exhibited in Wong's solo presentation MacLehose Trail at Bonhams Hong Kong in 2022.

Google Earth

The notion of travel took on a new definition for Wong during the pandemic, when he was compelled to cancel his trip to Kyoto and used Google Earth to travel the city. This virtual trip evolved into paintings of distant landmarks, accessed through satellite imagery, that the artist presented in A Grand Tour in Google Earth at Hong Kong's Gallery EXIT in 2021 and Dream Travel—alongside his Hong Kong landscapes—Unit London in 2022. Wong's Google Earth works are accompanied by small toy cars, placed atop each canvas, that also appear in the painted scenes.

Exhibitions

Stephen Wong Chun Hei has presented his work internationally in solo and group exhibitions.

Solo exhibitions include Dream Travel, Unit London, London (2022); MacLehose Trail, Bonhams, Hong Kong (2022); A Grand Tour in Google Earth, Gallery EXIT, Hong Kong (2021); 夢前集碎, Knowhere, Hong Kong (2020).

Group exhibitions include Shining Moment, Tang Art Foundation, Hong Kong (2021); Hong Kong Experience, Hong Kong Experiment, Hong Kong Museum of Art (2019); Ensemble, VT Salon Art Space, Taipei (2017); At the still point of the turning world, Galerie Ora-Ora, Hong Kong (2014).

Website

Stephen Wong Chun Hei's website can be found here and Wong's Instagram can be found here.

Sherry Paik | Ocula | 2022

Stephen Wong Chun Hei
featured artworks

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The Fire by Stephen Wong Chun Hei contemporary artwork painting
Stephen Wong Chun Hei The Fire, 2023 Acrylic on canvas
150 x 200 cm (incl frame)
UNIT Request Price & Availability
Fo Tan Family by Stephen Wong Chun Hei contemporary artwork painting
Stephen Wong Chun Hei Fo Tan Family, 2023 Acrylic on canvas
110 x 130 cm
Tang Contemporary Art Request Price & Availability
Fo Tan by Stephen Wong Chun Hei contemporary artwork painting
Stephen Wong Chun Hei Fo Tan, 2023 Acrylic on canvas
180 x 220 cm
Tang Contemporary Art Request Price & Availability
The stairs at Sui Wo by Stephen Wong Chun Hei contemporary artwork painting
Stephen Wong Chun Hei The stairs at Sui Wo, 2023 Acrylic on canvas
200 x 150 cm
Tang Contemporary Art Request Price & Availability
The Family in Fo Tan by Stephen Wong Chun Hei contemporary artwork painting, works on paper
Stephen Wong Chun Hei The Family in Fo Tan, 2022 Gouache on paper
22 x 29.7 cm
Asia Art Archive
The Kidnap by Mountain by Stephen Wong Chun Hei contemporary artwork painting
Stephen Wong Chun Hei The Kidnap by Mountain, 2017 Oil on canvas
80 x 100 cm
Not for sale
Asia Art Archive
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Stephen Wong Chun Hei
recent exhibitions

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Represented by this
Ocula Member Gallery

UNIT contemporary art gallery in London, United Kingdom
UNIT London
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Stephen Wong Chun Hei in
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