Linus Hui is a Hong-Kong born and bred artist. Having acquired a Product Design degree from the Polytechnic University of Hong Kong, in 2009, Linus commenced on working on paper-crafted costumes and self-portraits that were to be presented through the Flickr photo sharing website. Due to its originality and aesthetic outcome, Linus’ project soon became very popular encouraging him to enrich his portfolio with other works of the same culture. Alongside his personal projects, he has also designed some paper sculptures for Lane Crawford, a leading luxury retailing company in Hong Kong and China. For 2011, the Feel Good Factory will be enhanced with the Linus’ Know How’ - a humorous self-help guide, which is aimed at discussing and dealing with any personal situation.
Yet, because the personal view of the artist is always more clarifying and quotes make a text much more interesting, Yatzer chased Linus Hui to gain a firsthand sight of his aspect of the ‘Feel Good Factory’....
We admit that when we first saw your work, our first thought was that this is rather a unique concept. Would you like to explain how you came up with this idea?
I had competed 2 daily self-portraits before, and I thought it would be interesting to have a series of daily projects (for 365 days) that had a coherent theme. Also, straying away from my daily emotions and my daily activity, I wanted to test my creativity and create a new “genre”. Since I have started to fall in love with using paper and making paper costumes, it was only natural that I should create a paper item for a topic each day. Whereas the self-help guide was unintentional, I started the paper costume project on the 3rd day, and I thought a humorous self-help guide would communicate very well with the readers.
What is the inspiration for your themes?
I am inspired by our daily, “mundane” thoughts and behaviours, and “literal interpretations” of idioms. I love idioms, and I love the idioms about animals the best. They just give me fantastic reasons to design and make little animal costumes. Also, I find our emotional journeys from love to hate, from loneliness to our sense of belonging very inspirational. We all go through them, and we are all linked by them, as people.
We noticed in your work that you tackle issues from our everyday lives but always depict them in a humoristic manner. Was there some sort of identification that you are aiming for? For instance, a chance of seeing the amusing side of our everyday matters?
My humoristic manner of handling subjects, especially for our delicate emotions and problems, is actually a pessimistic reaction to life. If we cannot really solve these problems, we may as well enjoy ourselves, and my approach is to see our subjects’ contradictions and absurdity. On the other hand, sarcasm is also a good defence against the grown-up world.
What makes Linus feel good?
Linus feels good when he has having his feet up, after a good supper, watching a lovely television programme and having a nap - in other words, being well-fed and content. I also enjoy watching my bunny very much.
Is there any other project that you are currently working on?
I have just finished making a big paper set for a commercial print ad. My goal is to finish this year’s daily self portrait, and start with new material in the coming year. I have my heart set on leather and metal. I have always wanted to work with sheet metal, and I would like to experiment the techniques and shapes I use on paper.