C1V1L1ZAT1ON exhibition by L1ES ONE

L1ES ONE art painting hong kong hk

I made the trip out to Chai Wan Thursday night to check out the opening of the L1ES ONE, C1V1L1ZATION exhibition. I’ve been to the same mammoth building, Chai Wan Industrial City, twice in the past week, taking the MTR all the way out to the last stop on the Hong Kong Island line.

The home of the Six Keyz gallery and the Chancery Lane annex, is also the building that houses many of Hong Kong’s top photo studios. Saturday I discovered that photo studios themselves can be very photogenic!

I snapped this shot in between takes at a fashion shoot.


Getting back to Thursday night, I arrived at the exhibition at around 8:30. The Six Keyz space is a gallery three-quarters of which is occupied by a skateboard half-pipe. During exhibitions, often the half-pipe is painted and integrated as part of the show. This was also the case on Thursday night. The largest piece in the room covered part of the wall as well as the top corner of the half-pipe.


The piece recreates a layered, faded texture, reminiscent of painting a graffiti-scarred wall. L1ES ONE’s work contains figures, however the faces are typically obscured, or rendered in outline. There are also Asian elements present such as Peking Opera actors and similar motifs. The works include classic elements of graffiti like the quotes that are used to frame a tag, or the simple star which is a standard graffiti icon.

Here are a few details from the main piece above:

[photopress:L1ES_ONE_HK_Six_Keyz_exhibi.jpg,full,pp_image] [photopress:L1ES_One_Six_Keyz_gallery_H.jpg,full,pp_image]

(Please note that while I do provide photos from a show, I believe it’s worth a trip to check out the paintings and interpret them in the environment that the artist has created. Part of an exhibition is the installation, and by just viewing the images online you can’t gain a perspective of how the paintings actually complement each other. Enjoying artwork on its actual scale is also a far different experience than looking at a jpg online! There’s a sort of feng-shui to exhibiting artwork, in the sense that there’s a way to optimize the viewer’s experience, and the flow of looking at the works. Viewing it online removes you from that aspect and places the images in a vacuum.)

In addition to multiple paintings hung on the walls, the artist decorated everything, including the floors and window of the Six Keyz room.

[photopress:L1ES_ONE_paintings_3_row.jpg,full,pp_image] [photopress:L1ES_One_Peking_Opera.jpg,full,pp_image] [photopress:L1ES_ONE_painting_1.jpg,full,pp_image] [photopress:L1ES_ONE_painting_2.jpg,full,pp_image] [photopress:L1ES_ONE_painting_5.jpg,full,pp_image] [photopress:L1ES_ONE_painting_wall_floo.jpg,full,pp_image] [photopress:L1es_one_floor_painting.jpg,full,pp_image] [photopress:L1ES_ONE_tribute_painting.jpg,full,pp_image] [photopress:L1es_one_JUMP.jpg,full,pp_image]

The Six Keyz space was purely used for exhibition this time around. The reception was held on the opposite side of the building in the Chancery Lane annex.

[photopress:L1ES_ONE_reception.jpg,full,pp_image] [photopress:TO_DJ_DOZE_SAMIR.jpg,full,pp_image]

While I was there I caught the four turntable mix by d.j. Doze and d.j. Samir. They played dancefloor-friendly beats – one would mix, while the other would scratch. It worked smoothly. After awhile they switched to old school Hip Hop briefly which is more my flavor, followed by a short set that included music by Justice, who played at Volar in Hong Kong not too long ago.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

14 − thirteen =