Humanities and Creative Writing scholar shows gender culture with sound installation
A sound installation named “Twist and Turns”, designed by Dr Chow Yiu-fai, Assistant Professor of the Department of Humanities and Creative Writing, is now being exhibited in the first popular culture exhibition organised by M+, the museum of visual culture in Hong Kong’s West Kowloon Cultural District. It aims to let members of the public know more about the gender neutral and gender fluid phenomena.
“Twist and Turns” comprises four major components, including: radio dramas popular in the 1950s and 1960s in which one actor played multiple roles in the same drama by using many voices; Cantonese operatic tradition of women playing male characters and vice versa; a compilation of singers’ breathing sounds that were originally deleted during the production process; and a remix edition of a pop song ‘Androgynous’. Dr Chow said that to create the installation, he drew primarily on his documentation and representation of his childhood memories and his own experience working as a lyric writer.
From various presentation channels, Dr Chow picked up sound installation. He said “Our ears stay open, so supposedly they are more indiscriminate and democratic than other organs, such as eyes. I am interested in the evocativeness of sound. In addition, I think sound is an indispensable part of Hong Kong pop culture. With visuals becoming increasingly dominant, it is important for us to try and listen.”