Exhibition revisits trauma and healing in refugee camps

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 08 April, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 08 April, 2008, 12:00am

Local artist Evelyna Liang Kan Yee-woo is well known for her community arts projects. These include Art In Hospital, which spices up hospital corridors with large, colourful murals and provides long-term patients with a chance to do their own art as an emotional release.

She's part of a CARE (Community Art Revisited and Encountered) exhibition at Lingnan University. It goes back two decades to her work with other artists and volunteers at the Whitehead Detention Centre, which housed some of the thousands of Vietnamese boatpeople who flooded into Hong Kong during the 1990s.

Children who were in detention and had an uncertain future would draw in black, Liang (right) recalls, because they had no colour in their lives. So she took along a pot plant to see if it would provide just a tiny bit of colour and life for them. 'Through the arts activities, people were able to sort through their problems. They were able to paint their hope, even if they were waiting years in the detention camp.'

More than 200 paintings, photos and documents are on display and some of the former boatpeople will be at the opening tonight.

Liang expects the exhibition to open up an in-depth exploration of the connections between art, trauma and healing.

The exhibition is at the university's Leung Fong Oi Wan gallery until April 17. For details, call 25263765.


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