Objects of Abnormality 失常物誌

2021 final year project

︎Conceptual photography    
︎Exhibition design
︎Pinhole Photography

A conceptual and experimental pinhole photography projects that respond to the social situation of Hong Kong.



︎Project Background

Starting from 2019, most places in Hong Kong have turned into emotional landmarks and many symbolic objects of Hong Kong have emerged, owing to the social protests and the outbreak of coronavirus, which provoke certain kind of emotions when people revisit and recognise that place and scenes. The chain of social events have brought along different abnormal and even surrealistic situations in Hong Kong, putting people under the sense of absurdity and being trapped. Especially in the age of chaos, it is important for us to reconsider our relationship with the urban space and preserve the diversity of emotion as an individual.


Objects of Abnormality reveals the abnormal situations of this city. The controversial objects are converted into pinhole cameras, and become the carrier of its moment in history and culture of Hong Kong. In this work, the object itself is an artistic installation that satirises the current social chaos, together with the produced pinhole imageries, this set of works aim to connect with the memories of audience and evoke their emotions, hence becomes a common language of this place.

The images are rudimentary constructed to depict the emotional state of Hong Kong where uncertainty, oppression and absurdity are permeated. The whole set of experimental work are considered to reveal different kind of collective emotions and existing social maladies from the perspective of objects, providing a chance for people to reconsider the relationship between objects, emotions and urban space.

︎Object 1  "What The Pork?" 

The Great Wall Chopped Pork & Ham, a very popular canned food for local people, was one of the food provided by the government during the 48-hour lockdown in Jordan. The lockdown zone has a high proportion of ethnic minorities. However, luncheon meat, which is considered to be a prohibited food in their religious culture, was provided to them at the very beginning of lockdown. Such a problem has exposed Hong Kong government insensitivity to the ethnic minorities group.

As a Hk citizen, I am questioning how such a ridiculous and unintelligible act can appear in a city that is known for its 'Cultural diversity'. Not only the pork food distribution problem, pandemic has also brought about racial divides or the difficulties that ethnical minorities are facing in Hong Kong.

︎Object 2 "Together, We Fight The Virus"

Under the outbreak of coronavirus, face masks have become our daily necessities, and we also have to get used to the fast-changing disease prevention measures and arrangements everyday. All these things greatly change our everyday lives and habits. We always have to keep a social distance, and have repetitive lives. Going to work and going back home have become the most frequent route. The landscape has no change along the way, and it appears in our mind repeatedly.

Each member of the family can receive one box of 50 adult masks provided by the Hong Kong Government during the compulsory testing. And, I also got one box of ‘Made in Hong Kong’ masks when the outbreak of the virus was severe in the area of Jordan.

︎Object 3 "1997-2047 The Disappearing City"

Fried dace with salted black beans can food is one important memory of Hong Kong people. During the lockdown, it is common to see it inside the bag of food provided by the government. In my work, the can of fried dace is considered as a metaphor of the identity of Hong Kong people.

As what Tse Hiu Hung writes in the book of 《魚缸生物》, when living creature is put into fish tank, it is not the aquatic animal whose body is streamlined and covered with gleaming scales, but it is any creature that is taken away from the original living area and placed naked in glassware.

When fish is put into the can, it is not regarded as a
sea creature anymore. When the freedom of Hong
Kong people is snatched away, we are put under an identity vacuum.

︎Object 4 "Do Not Cross!"

Traffic cones are ubiquitous yet unnoticeable objects in our daily lives.

We see them practically every day, but do any of us really know about it? There are an estimated 140 million traffic cones worldwide, and they have been used on roads for 73 years.
They appear on the street in different forms, shapes and positions. Witnessing all the street sceneries at different times and places,
no matter how the weather is. During the social protest and pandemic, traffic cone as an everyday item has its new meanings.
It symbolises restriction, rescue and direction.

Imagine what the traffic cones are looking at on the street everyday.


︎︎︎Email  hosumyi0906@gmail.com