Artists are storytellers. Most tells a straight forward narrative and some uses symbolism or abstraction to illustrate an important point. Occasionally we see artist leaves his work open for interpretations. Few would employ metaphors to connect with the audience while others create visual analogy to transfer meaning from a particular subject to another. It is this last group that presents, in my opinion, the most thought-provoking work.
The newest collection by Hong Kong artist Chui Pui-chee belongs to this group. Embracing fatherhood, Chu's creative journey is naturally filled with episodes of everyday life with his children. Thus reading a bedtime story takes on centre stage. From Le Petit Prince, Cinderella to Zhong Kui and Lady Chou Heung, the range of characters from vastly different culture all acted out, infusing the young mind and transforming into lasting childhood memories.
Chui's painting by root is a visual analogy, taken form in parable or fable, telling an entertaining story to illustrate a moral lesson. The attribution of human traits, emotions or intentions to non-human entities is an innate tendency of our psychology. Like his well-known calligraphy or mosquitoes paintings, Chui's new works focus on this important anthropomorphism. So where lies the moral lesson? Beyond the confluence of Chinese and Western classics, Chui's new works indeed project a contemporary sentiment on our moral evolution. This new collection teaches and prepares not only Chui's children for the world we live in; through a lighter touch of mockery and cynicism, reflects this warped social reality that demands our urgent attention.