Five volumes of Michael Wolf's Hong Kong Back Alley Encyclopedia have already been published - thematically ordered by chairs, mops, plants or umbrellas. However, this sixth volume in the series is special.
For Hong Kong Assemblage Deconstructed, Michael Wolf has photographed a typical roadside installation with hangers, colorful ribbons, rusty staples, umbrellas etc.. Then he disassembled the complete random installation into the individual parts and made an image of each object.
Each bent coat hanger, each scarred staple, every dirty glove, every textile strip, even an old clock and a battered plastic bottle - each object gets its solo performance. The variety of components illustrates the complexity of the constantly changing everyday sculptures. But taken out of context every single object - worn, adjusted, misappropriated or broken - carries the signature of street life in Hong Kong.
"Wolf is fascinated by the way that residents find utility and function in these spaces where there appears to be none. In particular, he has often focused on the interplay between the myriad different objects that can be found in these alleys, often creating structures so complex that they seem to transcend their utilitarian function into a form of vernacular sculpture. Combining a vast number of different objects, from coat hangers to mops and soiled workers gloves to clothes pegs, these urban assemblages have become regular features of the Hong Kong back alley, everyday monuments to the activities of those that inhabit and traverse these spaces." - Marc Feustel.