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  • Writer's picturemaggie chu

Account of an accidental flâneuse

Updated: Dec 28, 2021

Sunday, 9 Aug 2021

Leaving the Hong Kong Visual Arts Centre, I wanted to go to Caine Road. Thought it was so close just across the road, but that was Garden Road, a 4-lane traffic without any pedestrian crossing. Strolling around trying to find the crossing, I got lost and suddenly realized I was in Lower Albert Road, the former Government Hills. Last time I came it was 10 years ago, also during the evening time of a public holiday, but it was so crowded, so many people and the noises…They became the street, the buildings and the city. Today it was dead quiet.

Sunday evening, gloomy and the air pressure was low I can hardly breath through my mask. I tried to find anything interesting from the architecture. They were so far away on the other side of the tall metal fences, the only thing aware of was the CCTV crowded on the walls. I could only imagine the void behind those windows neatly laid out in the 1950s Functionalist style. The air was dead.

Next to the tall metal fence was a stone wall, on top of it the complex name. The Chinese word “下” caught my eyes, there were glue marks carelessly seeping under the beautiful prismatic metal cast Chinese word. The ornamental form in contrast with its setting. I walked closer, aware of the CCTV above sticking out their necks and eyes popping out. I admired the beautiful lines and form of the word casted in black color, took a photo but not dare to touch. Imagining the brush touched the ground, ink coagulated, slowly seeping through and time was frozen at that moment.

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