The Ze/Ro exhibition at Ben Brown Fine Arts is sparked by the idea of an increasingly gender-neutral world.
The curator (an artist herself) Shirky Chan tells us about the Hong Kong women artists featured in the show, whose works explore ideas of femininity and empowerment.
When the Hong Kong Art Gallery Association issued an open call for a potential project for its Summer Programme (which connects member galleries with emerging local artists, curators and art writers), Shirky Chan - herself an artist and curator - answered with a proposal centring on women and gender equality. Chan's idea was to bring together female artists from different generations to explore empowerment, their place within and outside of society, their desired dissolutions of gender, as well as each artist's unique creative vision.
The association was impressed with her idea and she was invited to visit Ben Brown Fine Arts' space at The Factory in Wong Chuk Hang, after which she began to approach women artists about being part of the show.
The result is Ze/Ro, which is showing at the gallery until August 26. A showcase of the works of five local women artists, its title is inspired by the use of the gender-neutral pronoun "ze", rather than "he" or "she"; thus, in place of the apparent male bias in the word "hero", Chan suggests the non-gender alternative ze/ro.