Co-organised by K11 Art Foundation, the Consulate General of France in Hong Kong & Macau and Videotage and supported by the Institut français, Micromégas is a new artist residency and cultural exchange programme for the next generation of media artists in Hong Kong and France. The programme will bring a French artist to Hong Kong and send a Hong Kong artist to France for an eight-week residency. During their residency, each artist will create media artworks inspired by the foreign city and culture under the theme of ‘Globalisation’
In 2021, the first edition of Micromégas has taken place in Hong Kong with Off Power, the latest screen-based media work by French artist Théodora Barat. In her first Hong Kong project, Barat continues her exploration of the intertwining connections of a city through its electricity infrastructures. In Off Power, Barat re-examines the relationship between development and urbanism by gazing at electrical substations silently standing among skyscrapers and monstrously giant power plants carefully hidden behind mountains and trees. Her reimagined Hong Kong skyline takes place in a science-fiction story in an imagined future where the power plant on Lamma Island stops distributing electricity to Hong Kong Island. Highlighting the peculiar and almost monumental architecture of the city, the artist creates a re-imagined Hong Kong Island that remains in darkness without lights, LED signs, and electricity so that only architecture remains – an authority without ornament.
View the artist's curated playlist here.
In the interview with Barat, we turn our focus to her research interests and her process of integrating that with her experience in Hong Kong. She enthusiastically talked about her discoveries in her trips to power plants, substations and different parts of Hong Kong. Her sharing provides a refreshing perspective by rediscovering the overlooked infrastructure that is essential to our concrete jungle.