The first four years (1992-1995)
The editorial direction of the early years of NuNaHeDuo was very free-wheeling, and with little restraint. Free-wheeling because we did not have any baggage, nor over-the-top ambition and big dreams. It was rather, a platform open to creativity and experiments, and as long as we followed, stuck to the rules of game, i.e. the page limit, no artist fee, anything could be possible, if we had the ability, initiative, time and connection. The initial impulse of creating NNHD was to acknowledge the presence of alternative photography, which at that time, unlike the already established genres, i.e. pictorial, documentary or photo journalism, did not have a place to publish. We also believed that, the strongest work did not necessarily come from photographers. In this vein the formative years of NNHD basically focused on exploring the myriad of forms, and possibilities of photography; ranging from showing works in the form of portfolios (usually two or three persons in one issue) to thematic group projects, and examining the roles contemporary photography played and affected our daily lives. In many instances, we looked beyond conventional photography and invited writers, cinematographers, video artists, painters, graphic designers and curators to part-take the discussions. As a photo magazine, NNHD did something no other magazines had done before: crossing media and blurring art lines. Besides the publication, we also organized exhibitions of original artworks (based on works from the magazine) using alternative venues. One of the earliest of these activities was Dislocation Original Works Exhibition held at Visage Too at Shek O village in the south-eastern part of Hong Kong Island. That the first and most influential public display of alternative photography took place in this tiny wine bar is still talked about among artists in Hong Kong today.
Dislocation: Original Works Exhibition, Chapter One (1993) at Visage Too
(top) The exhibition invitation card, cover image by Ka-sing. (below) At the opening, from left: Hisun Wong, Lee Ka-Sing, anothermountainman (Stanley Wong), Lau Ching-Ping. On wall: work by Mike Tsang.
Among the many things I can write about for the first four years of NNHD, here is one interesting story. Starting from the March 1992 issue, Ka-sing redesigned the masthead of Nu女 Na那 He禾 Duo多, replacing the narrow strip of plain colour with some of our studio’s test strips. “That is another small area to play with and maximize our space for creativity”, he jokingly said. This was so true! For after a few years of experimenting this narrow strip of space, we submitted these magazine mastheads to HKIPP Biennial (organized by the Hong Kong Institute of Professional Photographers) under the category of the “Best Use of Photography”, and to our surprise it won a Gold Award! The trophy was a beautiful bronze sculpture designed and made by Antonio Mak (1954-1994). Today, in the case bound volumes of NNHD from 1992 to 1995, one can still find those tiny award-winning pieces printed humbly as mastheads in each cover of the magazines.
(top) A selection of mastheads from different issues of NNHD DISLOCATION. (below) The "Best Use of Photography" Gold Award trophy (1995), a bronze sculpture by Antonio Mak.
Like all other publications, we knew we needed more readership and were working our ways to increase subscription. Early in 1993, we rolled out a two-level subscription plan: Normal subscription (annual fee of HK$250) and Supporting subscription (annual fee of HK$1000, limited to 100). Supporting subscribers would get three 8x10 inch “numbered original print” within the year. These prints were donated by selected photographers, signed and editioned, up to 100. Patrick Lee was the first contributor to this subscription program. His photograph titled “Leaf #1” appeared in May 1993. The photographic paper was sponsored by Agfa-Gevaert. Ringo Tang contributed another image, also supported by Agfa, using Agfa’s Portriga-Rapid paper. I contributed the image “Two pieces of Rock” and printed on Cibachrome paper. In May 1994, the cross-disciplinary artist Kwok Man-Ho, also known as “Frog King”, contributed an image from his “Froggy sunglasses project”, we printed for him in our darkroom using Ilfochrome Classic paper sponsored from Jebsen & Co. By this time, the practice of collecting photographs had gained momentum, subsequently paving our way for a new project - the establishing of The Original Photograph Club (1994-1999). The last photograph donated to support NNHD subscription was from Hisun Wong (September issue, 1994). With material support from Polaroid (4x5 Type 59 film), his contribution was a hundred hand-made image-transfer prints of a milk bottle on water-colour paper.
Photograph donated by Patrick Lee
Photograph donated by Ringo Tang
Photograph donated by Kwok Man-Ho
Image-transfer print donated by Hisun Wong
NNHD concluded four years of work (we now called the first stage) in December 1995 with the release of INDEX ISSUE. Just as the name indicates, it is an issue dedicated to all 47 monthlies in fourteen pages, the last three pages provided artists information, and the back cover an editorial note by Ka-sing. Four years of persistent work did reward us with recognition, but with attention came expectation, we could no longer just take small, spontaneous steps, rather we would begin to think in another direction: now that alternative photography had made its presence eminent, the term ‘alternative’ seemed pointless, no longer relevant, as such, nonexistent.
The INDEX issue, published December, 1995. This issue summarizes all 47 monthlies (1992-1995) in thumbnails with brief content descriptions.
(below) At the back cover of the INDEX issue, Ka-sing wrote an editorial note reflecting on the previous four years of work, and announcing the coming reformation in 1996. Still attached and published monthly with PHOTO PICTORIAL, it would be re-designed as a square format, with editorial contents focusing on specific themes, usually running from three to six months as a unit.
Another three years (The second stage 1996-1998)
From 1995 we invited Wong Wo-Bik and Patrick Lee to join our committee. After half a year Wong Wo-Bik was too busy to continue and was replaced by Blues Wong. These new committee members contributed different perspectives and ideas to the magazine. We churned out more ambitious projects, dealing with specific themes which would appear in sequential issues. While still published monthly in PHOTO PICTORIAL, the specific topic could take up three to six months as a unit, and compiled into a volume with pages varying from 48 to 96. This was the Second stage of NuNaHeDuo. The format was modified, changed to a slightly squarish format. The new endeavour first appeared as Volume 5 - a compilation of 6 monthlies (January to June, 1996) in one bound publication - DOCUMENTARY: Facts, Fiction, Fantasy (96 pages published July 1996), and ultimately ended with Volume 13 - a compilation of 3 monthlies (October to December, 1998) in one bound publication - Travel Photography (64 pages, published February 1999).
The idea of Three: Hong Kong, Beijing and Taiwan
The more we look away, the more we look back: to our roots. It is inevitable, it is in our blood. In May 1996 we visited Rong Rong’s home in Beijing and met with two other photographers, Liu Zheng and Xing Danwen. Prior to the visit, we contacted them to organize some work for NNHD, which they promptly accomplished. The works of six Chinese photographers were published sequentially in three months on (July, August and September, 1996), combined in volume 7: the New Beijing Photography issue. In the editorial note I wrote about our meeting, our beer, how they loved our glossy NuNaHeDuo and how we loved their primitive xerox-copied, hand-bound journal New Photo. We purchased a copy from them and we are still keeping it, like treasuring our once pure and modest friendship, in the days before the big art surge, when less was more, grand-scale had not affected widely, yet, to become the international buzzword.
NNHD DISLOCATION, New Beijing Photography issue, the first opening spread page. An editorial note by Holly Lee, presented as a personal letter addressed to Xing Danwen.
In 1997, for seven months in a roll, the contents of NNHD aimed at one theme: Hong Kong. Eighteen Hong Kong photographers were invited to show work relating to this thread. Ka-sing wrote an editorial and featured essays by four writers: Carmen Lee, Matthew Turner (On Hong Kong), Warren Leung (Photography of a culture) and Norman Jackson Ford (Hong Kong Art at the Cosmopolitan Crossroads). The seven monthlies were bound into volume 8: On Hong Kong. It was the time of change. Though the colonial history of Hong Kong is brief, it deeply etched and knitted into the lives and consciousness of its citizens. The artists featured in On Hong Kong were mostly born from the 50's to 60's, they had memories of Hong Kong as a quiet, modest city growing to become the muscular, speedy, gold crown beast that headed the Asian dragons. Reviewing these photographs, one faintly feels the passages going and gone through, images mirroring moods and reactions of this particular time. A few months after the dragon and lion flag changed into the bauhinia flower, on January 21st, 1998, NNHD co-presented with Fringe Festival by launching a full scale exhibition: of photo works from On Hong Kong at the Hong Kong City Hall, an important public art venue located in the Central District, and right next to the famous Star Ferry in the Victoria Harbour.
The ON HONG KONG exhibition at City Hall. Photography work by Karl Chiu, Almond Chu, Alfred Ko Chi-Keung, Lau Ching-Ping, Patrick Lee, Lee Ka-Sing, Holly Lee, Leung Chi-Wo, Yvonne Lo, Bobby Sham, So Hing-Keung, Ringo Tang, Tsang Tak-Ping, Tse Chi-Tak, Tse Ming-Chong, Wong Chi-Fai, Blues Wong and Wong Kan-Tai.
Starting from 1997, Luk Chi-Cheong had been helping NNHD with publication design. A number of graphic designers also contributed their help in the previous years, notably David Lui, Eric Chan, Stanley Wong, Freeman Lau, Victor Cheong, Lilian Tang and a few others.
Rewinding back to 1994, the Hong Kong Arts Centre had organized an exhibition titled Contemporary Photography from Mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Curated by the exhibition director Oscar Ho, it selected some forty photographers’ work from the three regions. This marked a key milestone in the discourse on photography practised in these areas with “differential social development”. After NNHD had published the New Beijing Photography issue and On Hong Kong Issue, we approached Wu Jia-Bao 吳嘉寶, an important Taiwanese educator and photo critic, to curate an issue on Taiwanese photography for us. The works were published in three monthly issues and bound into volume 11, a publication under the title "Taiwan Contemporary Photography 1998". Simultaneously these photographs were arranged to be shown in our newly set-up OP fotogallery. As Ka-sing recalled Wu Jia-Bao’s selection process, he noted that Wu was concerned with the unique small space of OP fotogallery in Hong Kong, and had to leave out important photographers like Chen Shun-Chu 陳順築 and Wu Tien-Chang 吳天章, the former famous for his photo-installation, and the latter, known for his large scale print. But the collaboration led us to the artist Yao Jui-Chung 姚瑞中, whose work we included in our inaugural exhibition in Toronto 2000.
City Detour, the inaugural exhibition at LEE KA-SING gallery (formerly called OP fotogallery, Toronto), Spring 2000. A group show by Yao Jui-Chung, Leung Chi-Wo, Patrick Lee, Ringo Tang and Lee Ka-Sing.
Yao Jui-Chung was in Toronto to install his solo exhibition SAVAGE PARADISE at LEE KA-SING gallery, August 2000.
A new life
I feel sad, more so nostalgic to close the second stage of NNHD. Flipping thematic issues like Sequence, In resident, New Voice and Travel Photography, I still feel the pulse of the city, its people, its openness to languages of expression, its ever growing curiosity and experimentation. Here we show our deep respect and gratitude to all those involved to make DISLOCATION a magazine so cherished, and the work experience so unforgettable.
DISLOCATION ceased to publish when the era was drawing to a close. A few years later into the millennium, bracing available technology we found courage and recouped new strength to enter into an exciting new cycle of NuNaHeDuo.
Highlights of some issues in NNHD DISLOCATION in the First Stage (1992-1995), and the nine volumes in the Second Stage (1996-1999)
March 1992 issue
This issue published works by three artists, all of whom painters sometimes engaging work with mix-media: Chan Yuk-Keung 陳育強, Choi Yan-Chi 蔡仞姿 and Wong Shun-Kit 王純杰. Cover photo by Ka-sing.
Work by Chan Yuk-Keung
Work by Choi Yan-Chi
Work by Wong Shun-Kit
June 1993 issue
This issue published work by two artists working in the film industry: Christopher Doyle 杜可風, cinematographer; Yank Wong 黄仁逵, art director for films. Cover photo by Ka-sing.
Work by Christopher Doyle
Work by Yank Wong
September 1994 issue
Summer of 98 was a theme set for three art directors from the advertising and design industry to produce photo-based work: Tan Khiang 陳騫, Stanley Wong 黄炳培 and Freeman Lau 劉小康. Cover photo by Ka-sing.
Work by Stanley Wong
May 1992 issue
Cover photo by Ka-sing. This issue published works by two avant-garde artists in the performance circle: Danny Yung 榮念曾, founder/director of Zuni Icosahedron 進念．二十面體; Peter Suart 彼得小話, member of the band The Box 盒子樂隊, which he formed with Kung Chi-Shing 龔志成 in the late nineties. In this issue Danny Yung manipulated a historical photograph by swapping heads of the Communist leaders, a sensitive treatment and we were told by Sylvia Ng that this issue might not be able to circulate in China.
Work by Danny Yung
March 1995 issue
Cover photo by Holly Lee. The issue examined the idea of Identity, in which three photographers who lived and studied abroad were invited to submit works: Lana Wong 黄家璧, Hiram To 杜子卿 and Kary Kwok 郭家熾. Kary’s work went into trouble. His fictitious half-naked, self-inflicted injury and suicide self-portraits were rejected by PHOTO PICTORIAL. The truth was just too much. At the end, after some negotiations, we agreed to take action, self-censoring Kary’s photographs by placing black blocks covering controversial parts. This triggered us an immediate response, to organize and produce a special theme for the upcoming April issue: On Censorship.
Work by Hiram To
Work by Kary Kwok
Work by Kary Kwok
April 1995 issue.
On Censorship. Essays by Madeleine M. Slavick, Patrick Lee, Lau Sheung-Yeung, Blues Wong and 今日子. An interview of Sylvia Ng by Phoebe Man. Featured at below, a selection of spead pages from the On Censorship issue: (1) Spread page, editorial note written by Lee Ka-sing, Madeleine M. Slavick’s article: A Space to Think? (2) Spread page: the interview with Sylvia Ng, editor of PHOTO PICTORIAL. (3) Spread page: article by Patrick Lee: A Voice from the wilderness. (4) Spread page: continued the article When Batman punishes the Joker by Blues Wong; the texts in red is a documentation of the symposium on “Photography and Obscenity” sponsored by déjà-vu magazine held in Tokyo. It explained, “It was organized in response to the events surrounding the 11-day detention of the director of a gallery for suspicion of importing and selling obscene materials specifically, copies of Araki Nobuyoshi’s catalog AKT-tokyo 1971-1991.”
April 1993 issue
This unique Postcard issue was designed with four postcards per page, in total 24 postcards were featured. It was printed on heavy card stock, featuring a main article: On Postcards by Matthew Turner, with Chinese translation by Josie Man. Twenty four artists participated in this project: Chan Fung-Chun, Leo Chan, Gary Chang, Victor Cheong, Eric Cheung, Bob Davis, Joseph Fung, K.H., Jen R. Halim, Oscar Ho, Lau Ching-Ping, Freeman Lau, Lau Pui-Yee, Warren Leung, Andrew Chester Ong, Angela and Carsten Schael, Stella Tang, Christopher Doyle, Kith Tsang, Mike Tsang, Blues Wong, Wong Chi-Fai, Mathias Woo, Clement Yick Tat Wa. Blank side of the postcards were designed by Chou So-Hing, Eric Chan and David Lui. Cover photo by Ka-sing.
May 1993 issue
The theme was Photo Installation. Cover photo by Ka-sing. Essays: O Happy Chance by Patrick Lee, The Music and the Myth by Sidney Pun. Featured artists: K.H. + Chan Fung-Chun, Warren Leung + Sara Wong.
Work by K.H. + Chan Fung-Chun
Work by Warren Leung Chi Wo + Sara Wong
August 1993 issue
Family Album was a thematic group project participated by eleven children of differing background. Obtaining sponsorship of Nikon AF600 QD cameras from Shriro HK Ltd., Agfachrome RS100 films sponsored by Agfa and lab support from Front Production House, we were able to give these little artists cameras and material needed to photograph their family - totally free-hand. In the editorial note of this issue Ka-sing wrote, “Jacky Kwok Yan-Chee 郭恩慈 provides this issue with a binding overview through her article on Children’s photography…Finally we asked 10-year old Iris Lee to design the cover. She was at first undecided between photography and computer illustration as her medium, then picked the latter and her favourite paint program, studio 32. As a point of reference Iris selected the Nikon AF600 camera, used by all the children contributing photographs to this particular issue.” Participants: Neil Lee Thompsett, Keith Cheung, Ian Chui, Thomas Hynes, Leung An-Wen, Mak Woon and Mak Ching, Larissa Davis, Lau Chun, Jonnic Lee Thompsett, Julian Shiu.
(left) Larissa Davis, daughter of Bob Davis, age 4. (right) Leung Anwen, daughter of Leung Ping-Kwan, age 8.
September 1993 issue
This issue, titled Fabrication 揑造專號, we’d invited Oscar Ho 何慶基, the exhibition director of the Hong Kong Arts Centre, to create work based on the aforementioned theme. Back in October 1992, we had already done an issue with the same name, this would serve as our on-going study on the subject “Fabrication”. Essay: Fabrication by Oscar Ho. Cover by Ka-sing.
October 1995 issue
Guest curated by David Clarke 祈大衛, the issue was named Revisions. Cover and publication design by Eric Chan. A number of artists were invited to submit a pair of images, one from the past, and the other taken after they’d been invited to this project. David Clarke wrote an essay on the concept of Revisions. Artists invited: Lo Yin-Shan, Edwin Lai, Mo Man-Yu, Alfred Ko, Wong Wo-Bik, Ken Wong, Albert Li, Yvonne Lo, Chan Wei-Man, Osbert Lam.
February 1994 issue
Pinhole Photography issue. Editorial note by Ka-sing. Cover design by Freeman Lau. Perhaps, this might be the first time a magazine cover printed in all black. Besides, a small hole was drilled in the centre of the publication going through the 16 pages. The AGFA advertisement on the back cover was photographed by Bobby Sham with a pinhole camera. With pinhole photography dedicated to the whole issue, we had participants from the Art Camp (on pinhole photography) in the Hong Kong Art Centre mentored by Joseph Fung 馮漢紀; and pinhole photographs by Bobby Sham. In this issue Joseph Fung also talked about the making of pinhole cameras and the required technique in creating an image. Photographers featured: Joseph Fung, Benjamin Lui, Vincent Chan, Angie Tsui, Carmen Yim, Bobby Sham.
February 1995 issue
PHOTO BOOTH Issue. Cover photo: Holly Lee. Editorial note by Wong Wo-Bik. Opening Spread: Editorial note and photo booth pictures. (bottom) spread of an inside page. Participants in the project: Phoebe Man, Victor Chiu, Craig Au-Yeung, Carsten Schael, Stephen Cheung, Leo Chan, Yvonne Lo, Wong Chi-Chung, Eliza L. Leung, Warren Leung, Brenda Turnnidge, Lau Ching-Ping, Albert Li, Dung Kai-Cheung, Paul Sabol, Kith Tsang, Gary Chang, Wing Shya, Wong Wo-Bik, Chan Yuk-Keung, David Clarke, Stanley Wong, Almond Chu, Holly Lee, Tan Khiang, Lo Yin-Shan, David Lui, Patrick Lee, Bobby Sham, Osbert Lam and Jadee Bow,Hisun Wong, Wang Hai, Evangelo Costadimas, So Hing-Keung, Ringo Tang, Sara Wong, Comyn Mo, Ning+Blues
The nine volumes of NuNaHeDuo DISLOCATION in the Second Stage (1996-1999)
Volume 5, 1996 (96 pages). Documentary: Facts Fiction Fantasy.
Cover photo: Leung Chi-Wo, Warren. Essays by Suen Shu-Kwan, Leon 孫樹坤, Patrick Lee 李志芳, Blues Wong 黄啟裕, Chung Chi-Leung 鍾智樑. Over forty artists appeared in this volume. Under our loupe: Our Lady of Joy Monastery (Trappist) by Patrick Lee; Photo Diary by David Clarke (photo & text); 10 Portraits for a Serial Killer (a found fiction presented by K-Theory); V.C. & k.h. Please, please…什麼的
Volume 6, 1996 (48 pages). Sequence.
Cover photo: Kith Tsang 曾德平. Essay: Et Sequentia by Eric Otto Wear. A creative project using images and texts in the form of a renga. Participating artists: Wong Chi-Fai 黄志輝, Holly Lee 黄楚喬, Kith Tsang 曾德平 , Hiram To 杜子卿, Phoebe Man 文晶瑩, Lo Yin-Shan 盧燕珊, Law Wai-Ming 羅維明.
Volume 7, 1996 (48 pages). New Beijing Photography.
Cover photo: Lee Ka-Sing. Letter to Danwen by Holly Lee. Essay: 此在的圖像誌 by 島子. Photographers featured: Liu Shu-Yung 劉樹勇, Xu Zhi-Wei 徐志偉, Yuan Dong-Ping 袁冬平, Rong Rong 榮榮, Xing Danwen 邢丹文, Liu Zheng 劉錚.
Volume 8, 1997 (112 pages). On Hong Kong.
Cover and publication design: Luk Chi-Cheong 陸志昌. Essays by Carmen Li 李筱怡, Warren Leung, Lo Kwai-Cheung 羅貴祥, Matthew Turner (with translation from Lydia Ngai and Phoebe Wong). Photographers featured: Karl Chiu 趙嘉榮, Almond Chu Tak-Wah 朱德華, Alfred Ko Chi-Keung 高志强, Lau Ching-Ping, Patrick Lee Chi-Fong, Lee Ka-Sing, Holly Lee, Warren Leung Chi-Wo, Yvonne Lo Yuen-Man 盧婉雯, Bobby Sham 沈嘉豪, So Hing-Keung 蘇慶强, Ringo Tang 鄧鉅榮, Kith Tsang, Ducky Tse Chi-Tak 謝志德, Wong Chi-Fai 黄志輝, Blues Wong, Ken Wong Kan-Tai 黄勤帶, Norman Jackson Ford.
Volume 9, 1997 (80 pages). In Resident.
Publication design: Luk Chi-Cheong. Essay: Photographers Meeting by Norman Jackson Ford. Cited from the editorial note, “In these past few years, there have been photographers passing through Hong Kong - some to reside for only a brief period, and some take roots and make Hong Kong their homes. And in the course of pursuing their photographic art they have imposed certain influences for Hong Kong photography. Dislocation will feature the work of some ten photographers who fall into this category.” Photographers featured: Hoshino Hiromi 星野博美, Tomoko Kikuchi, Norman Jackson Ford, Madeleine Slavick 思樂維, Patricia Kay, Ernst Logar, Ric Kallaher, Dickson Yewn 翁狄森, Serge Clément.
Volume 10, 1998 (48 pages). New Voice.
Publication design: Luk Chi-Cheong. Essay: Teaching and Learning: The Odd Couple? By Kith Tsang. “…On the other hand, there emerge a new breed of young photographers who have the will to disregard old aesthetics; although these images appear years after Japan and North America, we could feel the pulse of this city when deciphering their down to earth Portfolios. In this volume we feature a selected new and notable photographers with common academic background (mostly come from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University)…” excerpted from editorial note. Photographers featured: Fan Yuk Ki, Chan Ho Fung, Cedric, James Law, Tony Ko, Sunny Yan.
Volume 11, 1998 (48 pages). Taiwan Contemporary Photography 1998.
Publication design: Luk Chi-Cheong. Essay: The Art of Taiwanese photography after the 90’s by Wu Jia-Bao 吳嘉寶. Photographers featured: Ho Ching-Tai 何經泰, Chou Ching-Hui 周慶輝, Yao Jui-Chung 姚瑞中, Albert J.L. Huang 黄建亮, Lin Pei-Hsun 林佩薰.
Volume 12, 1998 (48 pages). Recent Work.
Publication design: Luk Chi-Cheong. Essay: Hong Kong’s stifled Art Spaces by John Batten. Showcasing 23 photographers’ recent work: Patrick Lee, David Clarke, Ng Sai-Kit 吳世傑, So Hing-Keung, Serge Clément, Hoshino Hiromi, Anthony Lam, Wong Hung-Fei 黄鴻飛, Mak Fung 麥烽, Lee Ka-Sing, Ducky Tse, Almond Chu, Eric Carrera Lowe, Hisun Wong 王希慎, Blues Wong, Chan Wai-Man 陳偉民, Norman Jackson Ford, Andrew Chester Ong, Josiah Leung, Kith Tsang, Evangelo Costadimas, Bobby Sham, Do Do Jin Ming 金旻.
Volume 13, 1999 (48 pages). Travel Photography.
Publication design: Luk Chi-Cheong. Editorial note by Lau Ching-Ping. Essay: Travel • Hong Kong • Photography written by Warren Leung. This issue explored the diversity and pluralistic possibilities in travel photography. Invited participants: Sean Dougherty, Janet Fong Man-Yee 方敏兒, Teresa Chan, Cheung Tsui-Hung, Gloria, Lai Tat-Wing, Patrick Lee, Fung Wai-Yan, Sonia Tsang, James Ting, Pang Sin-Kwok, Beatrix, Au Tse-Keung, Johnny, Cheung Kin-Wai, David, Wong Hung-Fei.