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RPW critiqued on ARTE M Immersive Media Art Exhibition【一人一點藝評社 One Point Critique Society】

ARTE M: Artistic Integrity or Viral Appeal?

ARTE M, the captivating digital art exhibition hailing from Korea, made an impressive splash in the heart of Hong Kong, skilfully riding on the trend of Korean pop culture and contemporary art. The exhibition garnered much anticipation, drawing a substantial number of ticket sales and becoming into a social media hotspot. However, as dazzling images flooded online feeds, I wonder whether the physical experience could live up to the lofty expectations. Has ARTE M truly accomplished its purpose, or has it become merely a backdrop for Instagram-worthy snapshots?

Centered around the theme of eternal nature, ARTE M leverages sound effects and fragrances to heighten the immersive encounter with digital visual art. The journey begins with the awe-inspiring "Aurora Beach," where realistic wave noises and stunning visuals create an impactful start, setting the stage for what lies ahead. However, the subsequent transition to the "Jungle Glow" section brings a tinge of disappointment. Instead of invoking a sense of mystical wonder in an imaginative forest, the visuals lean towards a mild and child-friendly storybook. While aesthetically pleasing, the leisurely pace and occasional stillness in the "Lost Tubes" scene leave some viewers confused, hindering the flow of the exhibition.

Similarly, the "Flower" section falls short of leaving a memorable impression, lacking the standout elements needed for captivation. Although backstories explain the significance of certain flower types, they fail to create a compelling visual connection. Consequently, these segments lack the artistic impact that visitors had hoped for. In contrast, the "Whale" room emerges as a standout, powerful, and intriguing section. Positioned near the "Forest" exhibit, it captured the awe-inspiring essence of a deep sea. The sea's transformation into the shape of a whale, accompanied by deep growls and constant waves, crafts a remarkable portrayal of the unpredictable ocean. Here, it particularly allows viewers to truly immerse themselves in the perspective of a whale in the sea, achieving the intended effect with success.

While the exhibition possesses the necessary components, the in-person encounter doesn't quite match the hype generated on social media. Ironically, the sections that may be deemed less engaging have become the most popular spots for visitors seeking photo opportunities. This intriguing observation prompts deeper reflections on the evolving role of exhibitions in today's digital age. Is the focus shifting toward promotional value and viral appeal at the expense of preserving artistic integrity? Does social media dictate the perceived quality of an exhibition?

Images were taken by the writer. @206.4 - ARTE M Immersive Media Art Exhibition 展覽日期:7/10/2022- 31/10/2023 展覽地點:K11 HACC, L2 ATELIER King’s Road, 728 King’s Road, Quarry Bay Facebook專頁:ARTE M Hong Kong Instagram專頁:@artem_hongkong



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