K11 MUSEA unveils Austrian artist Erwin Wurm’s Hot Dog Bus in Victoria Dockside
Adrian Cheng adds key public sculpture to reinvigorate Hong Kong’s waterfront culture
HONG KONG – K11 MUSEA, the world’s first cultural-retail destination, unveils Erwin Wurm’s (b. 1954, Austria) Hot Dog Bus for the first time in Asia within Hong Kong’s newest cultural district, Victoria Dockside in Tsim Sha Tsui. The supersized art piece adds shines to K11 MUSEA’s already impressive art collection that comprises over 40 world-class art pieces – many of which are commissioned pieces. Hot Dog Bus was originally commissioned by Public Art Fund, the playful mobile food kiosk is disguised in a sculpture and it intends to encourage passers-by to rethink how our food, consumer culture and wellbeing are interconnected. Hot Dog Bus is placed at the entrance to K11 MUSEA, adjacent to the Sunken Plaza, an immersive amphitheatre-inspired event space, to encourage dialogues.
Curated under the direction of K11 Group founder Adrian Cheng, the K11 MUSEA art collection, with the addition of Hot Dog Bus, sets to reactivate Hong Kong’s Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront, which has historically played a vital role in the exchange of ideas, and as the confluence of cultures in Hong Kong.
Cheng said: “It is my vision to make K11 MUSEA a Silicon Valley of Culture, where we can incubate local and international talents, and propagate culture. To bring Erwin’s Hot Dog Bus to this important location is also to inject art and culture into new consumer’s daily life and let our meticulously curated art collection mingle with architecture, design, fashion, furniture, gastronomy and sustainability, in turn reshaping Hong Kong’s waterfront culture.”
Wurm intends for the Hot Dog Bus to be aesthetically absurd yet welcoming, approachable and democratic; by blurring the boundaries between art and giving the audience an entertaining experience. Hot Dog Bus, like its predecessors in Wurm’s Fat Car Series (2001-2004), challenges the traditional notions of sculpture and reinvents everyday objects such as the Volkswagen Microbus in a paradoxical bulbous form – the increased volume alludes to behaviour of excess and overeating, resulting in added mass to our bodies.
Wurm added: “Hot Dog Bus is a participatory piece of art as I always want my work to give people the opportunity to interact with it. I was therefore very excited to learn about its inclusion in the art collection of Adrian Cheng’s K11 MUSEA, which shares the same ethos of making art and culture accessible. I can’t wait to see how this waterfront community will react to and engage with the sculpture. The idea behind this work is that one could say that gaining or losing weight is a sculptural work. The absurdity of something so ordinary, like gaining or losing weight, is interesting for me. So that is the reason I combined these two systems, the technical system of the vehicle and the biological system of the body. It evokes how when people have dogs, they slowly look like their dogs and the dogs come to look like their owners. It’s the same with the cars, they take on the property of their owners. This association with one’s own appearance goes beyond boarders and cultures. I’m going to enjoy watching the Hongkongers enjoy the hot dogs and thinking…will enough of these make me look like the vessel they were served in.”
K11 MUSEA, opened in late August, is the final milestone in Cheng’s ten-year regeneration for the Victoria Dockside masterplan, drawing from its learnings and research across architecture, design, art and culture from its past projects. Together with the 100 creative powers hailing from different disciplines and cultures, Cheng is building a Silicon Valley of Culture, which harbours not just art, but also design, furniture, fashion, gastronomy, architecture. K11 MUSEA sets to enrich the cultural and leisure offerings along the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront; providing a trailblazing platform for artistic experimentation and creation, supporting the diverse working and living environment, strengthening the growing cultural network in Hong Kong.
Prior to its new home in Victoria Dockside, Hot Dog Bus was first exhibited at The Museum of Wolfsburg in Germany as a Curry Bus serving local fast food dish currywurst and was later re-imagined as Hot Dog Bus when it travelled to New York’s Brooklyn Bridge Park serving hot dogs to visitors.
Sculpture as a hot dog truck
Hot Dog Bus will reinvent itself again to serve the Hong Kong community. In collaboration with local restaurant The Butchers Club and grocer Green Common, it will serve refreshments to pedestrians as they enjoy the scenic harbourfront walkway. Visitors by simply consuming the refreshments, which include the sustainable, plant-based meat alternative Beyond Hot Dog (plant-based sausage by Beyond Meat) and Classic Hot Dog with a unique hot dog recipe, will become part the art project by Wurm, who believes ingesting is a way of sculpting one’s body, and that Hot Dog Bus is a “response on consumerism”. Hot Dog Bus will be opened every day of the week from 12pm – 7pm from 27 September to 10 October, 2019; and between 11 October and 27 October, Hot Dog Bus will be opened from Fridays to Sundays.
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