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Artist Statement

My research and practice focus on the current social and political climate in Hong Kong. The work's foundation is inspired by my 2019 trip there. The introduction of the Extradition Bill, which would have allowed criminal suspects to be extradited to mainland China, sparked the first protest that June. The protesters have stated their five demands:

  1. Withdrawal of the Extradition Bill
  2. For chief executive Carrie Lam to step down
  3. Inquiry into police brutality
  4. Release of arrested protesters
  5. Universal suffrage

In September 2019, the bill was withdrawn, but the conflict between police and protesters had already been and escalating. The following month, Carrie Lam banned face masks under a colonial-era emergency law.  It is June 2020 and the protests has persisted over a year now even during the Coronavirus pandemic. On May 21, 2020, China approved a bill that would implement a national security law over Hong Kong, resulting in the territory's special status with the U.S. revoked by President Trump and the annual Tiananmen vigil banned for the first time. 

My approach involves looking at the conflict through a futurist lens that imagines, investigates, and parodies what the future might look like if the situation is not resolved. I look to a range of resources to inform my work, such as speculative fiction, historical texts, conversations with political scientists, and personal sources who live in Hong Kong. My art practice has served as a mechanism to navigate my place in the world as a first-generation immigrant. These experiences inform me on how to create conceptual work through historical, political, and cultural contexts. Like my cultural identity, my combined aesthetic between Eastern and Western styles and philosophies is a part of my artistic fingerprint.

Instagram: @sallyohmalee

Website: sallyleeart.com

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Artwork by Sally Lee - The Protection and The Fragile Series
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Porcelain, 2020
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Artwork by Sally Lee - The Protection and The Fragile Series
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Porcelain, 2020
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Artwork by Sally Lee - The Protection and The Fragile Series
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Porcelain, 2020
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Artwork by Sally Lee - The Protection and The Fragile Series (Umbrella Add-Ons)
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Porcelain, 2020
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Artwork by Sally Lee - Civil Disobedience
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Porcelain and barricades, 2020. Photo by Karli Janell Tucker.