A small-scale exhibition, “Excessive Enthusiasm: Ha Bik Chuen and the Archive as Practice” showcases the initial results of Asia Art Archive’s research into the late artist’s life, work, and personal archive. The objects displayed, which represent but the tip of the iceberg from Ha’s vast database, are selected in an attempt to demonstrate the different possibilities of reading a document.
Hong Kong artist Ha Bik Chuen (1925-2009) was initially known for his sculpture and printmaking. Later on in life he turned his attention to photography and ink painting. The image of Grandpa Ha, as he was affectionately known, walking around with his cameras was constant over 30 years of exhibitions spanning every size, format, and location; his perseverance as a documentarian is truly marvelous. After his passing, the art database—which he called a workshop for thinking—was fully preserved.