In collaboration with Swarovski, British-Chinese designer Elaine Yan Ling Ng unveils a stunning handcrafted installation that takes the cake of this year’s Art Central.
We literally stopped in our tracks and stood in awe as the spectacle that is Sundew fully captivated our senses of hearing, sight, and smell. Hong Kong-based designer Elaine Yan Ling Ng beautifully handcrafted the five-part installation, presented by Swarovski’s Designers of the Future Award initiative, which supports emerging designers who are actively experimenting design culture through cutting-edge technologies.
Also founder of bespoke textile consultancy, The Fabrick Lab, Elaine’s year-long progress leading up to the unveiling of the final project was inspired by the carnivorous sundew plant, which lures its prey for an encompassing lethal grip and has an identical affect with curious art enthusiast spectators. Its Swarovski-crystallised gleam, textile vibrancy, and ethereal fragrant engaged us in a mesmerising daze as we watched it move harmoniously with the notes of the violin. Elaine’s unique approach to design encompassed all aspects of nature, craft and technology to create a fantastic and interactive presentation.
The artist went the extra mile in the making of Sundew by joining hands with the craftswomen of Guizhou, China, and created the hand-woven mesh paneling which greets you before the installation.
Traveling between Hong Kong and Guizhou, Elaine provided the craftswomen the fundamental tools needed to complete the piece, and selected one of the women for a managerial role to supervise the progress. Highly meticulous craft skills by minority groups from rural villages the likes of Guizhou are often overlooked and capitalised upon by urban consumers in developed countries. For this reason, the woven piece was created by Elaine in a socially conscious effort to help consumers realise the existing but undermined trade. In support, Swarovski compensated the Guizhou craftswomen for their work.
Images from Art Central
Art Central, 23-26 March 2016, Central Harbourfront, HKD$230 adult, $110 concession, $50 student, www.artcentralhongkong.com