Following two editions of Open Cinema in Portugal, the Cinema Island was a new project for K11 in Hong Kong developed in collaboration with architect Colin Fournier. The building is constructed to invite the visitors to dive under and to experience the world beyond the mirrored surface. It is a cinema at play. Play implies experimentation and chance, allows the cinema to be a living thing, hoping to extend our experience rather than persuade.
The inner life of the cinema connects to our own desires and projections. In a short film Everything we encounter the worlds of aspiration and luxury, the fantasies of the early stages of consumerism pictured with precision by Gustave Flaubert in his novel, Madame Bovary. 150 years since its publication some of the tropes and warnings find resonance in the habits of contemporary Hong Kong. The texture of the city, so palpably marked by the presence of the peak, reserved for the ascendant desires of success is offset by a different process. One, tracing with meticulous attention and purpose, the slowness and the complications connected to the organisation of individual segments that allow the sharing through language. The evocative repetition involved in composing the script on the letterpress right in front of our eyes creates a counterpoint to the seduction of thinking and speaking aloud introduced by the female narrator in Cantonese.
A play of interiorities reveals itself as a play of literary and visual constructions. Here we are reminded of the agency of art, by running paralell narratives exposing how the text connects with the film and how the film becomes a text expressed as edits and incissions into the temporalities guarded by the archive. The additive process of building is disrupted by an imaginary world of singularities, words and lives, as they are being assembled into an image caught between colonial past and capitalist present. Lets make the film do the unraveling of our minds and hearts with our feet firmly on the ground.