Seeing Your Neighbourhood Through the Pinhole
Public spaces is an interesting topic. In a tiny but densely populated city like Hong Kong, the word “public” can almost seem paradoxical. Our students pass by all kinds of public spaces on a daily basis, but they do not necessarily pay attention to what is happening there. There are children playing in a park, for example, but also old people who do their morning exercises, housewives hanging out their laundry and workers taking a rest break. Public space users all have different needs and different imaginations regarding their community. Unfortunately, some students barely have any imaginations regarding public spaces.
In this course, students use their handmade pinhole cameras to observe and understand their community. First, they learn to make a pinhole camera and study how it works, as well as equip themselves with simple dark room knowledge. Then, they collect waste objects in their neighbourhood and turn them into one-of-a-kind pinhole cameras. During the process, they learn to communicate with people and observe their neighbourhood, eventually take photos of them and make personal improvements by taking part in community activities.
Familiar yet Strange
According to statistics, Hongkongers top the world by walking 7000 steps a day on average. But while we lead a hectic life and walk hastily day in day out, how many interesting people and stories have actually passed by without us noticing? In fact, every single day can be a voyage of discovery.
Starting from their school and the places they are familiar with, our students learn to make observations on a daily basis. Then, they go to places they have a vague idea of but don't know well enough to capture interesting people and stories on the streets. The ideas are eventually developed into a unique personal series with writings and images.