Born in Macau, Aka Chio graduated from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University in 2008 with an associate’s degree in design. She lives and works in Hong Kong and currently is a member of the Hong Kong Cantopop girl group “Super Girls”. Chio has collaborated with a number of reputable fashion brands creating drawings for their advertisements and merchandise.
By Efi Michalarou
Photo: ZZHK Gallery Archive
Aka Chio also has a deep interests in social welfare and community art activities. Her first solo exhibition “HER” is also a sale to benefit the Hong Kong Federation of Women’s Centres (HKFWC) Womens Relief and Support Fund. Founded in 1981, the HKFWC concern about the situation of grassroots women, and promote gender equality in Hong Kong through services, education and advocacy. Through four women centres has develop volunteer networks, provide appropriate services for women, and develop their potential. Aka Chio’s works mainly focus on women and explore the role of women in the society and family from different perspectives. Chio paid particular attention to women’s issues and reflect her own expectations and respect for women’s status through the creation of imaginary female characters and settings at her works. She believes that women are still obliged to take up different roles after marriage, such as trauma in their marriage and their difficulty to seek help when encountering difficulties in finance and raising children. By using pen and ink on paper and focusing on the visual power of black and white, Chio recreates these fictitious female characters that she imagines, which is a mixture of people that she has seen in real life, in films, media and comics, bringing the work together into this exhibition is to draw attention to these vulnerable groups. In her work “Eye of Heart” (2017) Chio cuts out the figure’s eyes, leaving it hollow and half covered with a hand, while a bright eye glowing inside her heart, as the artist says “SHE will see with HER heart”. In “Poison is Poisonless” (2017 the baby mushrooms grow exuberantly under the shelter of the big poisonous mushroom, indicating the delicate relationship between mother and child. In another work in this exhibition, titled “Heart in Heart” (2017), a woman is transformed into a mermaid guarding her baby in a tsunami night. In the work “The Cage” (2017), a woman was trapped in a golden cage symbolizing the situation where women have no gateway to freedom and feel like trapped, isolated and dejected. According to Mingpao newspaper, 18 of her paintings sold before the exhibition started, and she was able to raise about HKD 200,000 from the sales.
Info: ZZHK Gallery, 3Wa Lane, SheungWan, Hong Kong, (between 227-229 Hollywood Road), Duration: 21/12/17-8/1/18, www.zzhkgallery.com