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Curator’s Statement

Above Second is proud to present the works of Cara To, a dark ethereal world where her visions of enchanted animals come alive. The figures, animated from the shades of her childhood dreams and nightmares, dart back and forth from the shadows. Tangled in fear, Cara felt caught in a vicious circle that translated into an obsession with repetition and connections, stringing from anywhere to anything.

In her compositions, Cara plays with light and shadow, embracing the fears that used to torment her in a defiant act of acceptance of her past. In the process, she performed a feat of time travel by only listening to the music and watching the movies she had experienced as a teenager; she journeyed back to the macabre and the quirky with the help of Perfect Circle, Deftones and Tim Burton.

Another element to her catharsis was the act of making these works in Hong Kong. Having grown up abroad in Belgium, she had felt out of touch with her Chinese heritage; it was her biggest fear as a kid to not fit into Chinese culture and to put her parents to shame. However, over time she convinced herself that she should live for her dreams and put these fears behind her.

In the exhibition, most of her work is produced on the warm and inviting surface of wood. These wood objects were mostly found in abandoned spaces, featuring bedplates from forty-­‐year-­‐old cage houses and old Chinese vintage doors that have been colored by time and history. They have been given a new life through Cara’s attention and care. She marks her added presence through another layer of neon strings, nailed to the wood in a geometric pattern.

The second part of the exhibition is presented through partial presence: holograms. Cara recreates the animated presence of the creatures of her mind through a dot per dot technique on sheets of plastic, reminiscent of tattoo work or old illustrative methods. Once darkness falls and a light is shone upon them, they come to life.

Through her unique and experimental techniques, Cara invites us into her world and past. Come experience her childhood fears and fantasies in this fresh and inviting exhibition.

Opening Reception Friday August 9 from 7 – 10 PM

Venue: 31 Eastern St, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong

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About the Artist

Cara To is an artist from Belgium. Cara was born in a tiny town to the first family of immigrants to have settled there. She was raised by her Hong Kong-born parents who taught her traditional Chinese values. This often made her scared to make mistakes. She studied Biochemistry at University followed by Game Design and moved to Amsterdam to work as a 3D artist in a post-­‐production house called Post Panic. Bit by bit Cara decided that she should let her fears go and just try to do everything at least once in life, especially the things she’s most scared of failing at. In addition to long boarding, she started to do graffiti art. In the winter of 2013 Cara moved to Hong Kong. It has been an amazing journey till now, and she is excited for what is yet to come.

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