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Distributed for HKU Museum and Art Gallery

from 2 arises 3

The Collaborative Works of Arnold Chang and Michael Cherney 2014–2017

Distributed for HKU Museum and Art Gallery

from 2 arises 3

The Collaborative Works of Arnold Chang and Michael Cherney 2014–2017

The collaborative works of painter Arnold Chang (Zhang Hong; b. 1954) and photographer Michael Cherney (Qiu Mai; b. 1969) defy expectations. More than just the product of a camera and brush, these works on paper are a union of artistic minds, a visual duet that ultimately creates a third work of art—something greater than its respective parts. The title of this exhibition, From Two Arises Three, is drawn from Verse 42 of Laozi’s Dao De Jing, which provides a theory for the origin of the universe. In this classical Daoist text, we learn that “three gives birth to ten thousand things,” or, more broadly translated, “three produces all things.” What then is this “three”? From a cosmological viewpoint, three is the union of dualistic forces in the world—the transformations and mutual interdependence of the energies that underlie everything. Extending this view to an artistic perspective, “three” is a powerful vision that comes from collaboration. We live at a time when artistic achievement is largely based on the artist as a lone creator, yet with Arnold Chang and Michael Cherney we have a model for creation that bridges cultures and artistic traditions, ultimately changing our way of seeing. The “three” that results from Chang and Cherney’s collaborative work is both a powerful shared vision and a unique meeting of minds. While painting and photography are both independent and solitary pursuits, the opportunity to come together provides new potentialities for the artistic process. Collaboration has become an important part of these artists’ creative output, complementing and supplementing their individual creative oeuvres.

96 pages | illustrations throughout | 11.25 x 8.25


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