TRANSITION


Transitions manifest before a turn. They are the in-between: the progression, the regression, the metamorphosis that transpire ahead of change. As intermissions, transitions are forgotten because they are so brief—neglected, because all eyes have shifted to what has transpired. As extended lulls, transitions offer space for rumination, guided by the transformation in sight. As indefinite pauses, they trap one in limbo, where the only constant is uncertainty.

In literature, transitions signal change, bonding rows of text together as one. In science, they are the movement from one state of matter to another. In nature, transitions are the graduation from one stage in a life cycle to another; the cumulation of air, heat and moisture ahead of a storm; the moment before a child is born.

Across the globe, diplomatic affiliations are shifting; governments are changing hands; energy systems are inching towards sustainability; alternate gender identities and sexualities are preparing for their time to shine. Meanwhile, the lives of millions of displaced individuals continue to be put on hold. In Hong Kong, a transition occurred when a fishing village morphed into a metropolis; when its sovereignty was transferred from Britain to China; when autonomy was brought into question. The transfer of sovereignty came with the promise to leave the city unchanged for five decades—but in a city of transition, any promise of changelessness could sound empty. For the rest of us, transitions simply mean the progression from one life stage to the next; waiting in one line after another, constantly transitioning, until we wander into the queue for a final resting place.

We now invite you to capture the shift, the transformation, and experience the in-between—however fleeting, however endless, they may be.


Zoher Abdoolcarim

Based in Hong Kong, Zoher Abdoolcarim was appointed as Asia Editor, TIME International, in June 2008 overseeing TIME’s award-winning Asia edition. Prior to this role, he was a senior editor at TIME Asia, a position he held since 2002 where he helped shape all aspects of TIME’s coverage of Asia. His cover stories include a June 2007 article on the 10th anniversary of the British handover of Hong Kong to China, a November 2011 lead essay comparing China and India, and a prologue on India ahead of its landmark May 2014 elections. Zoher also writes commentary on Asian affairs for TIME.

Prior to joining TIME Asia, Zoher was managing editor of Asiaweek and an editor at Singapore-owned Asian Business. Over the course of his career, Zoher has been a foreign correspondent based in Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore, with reporting assignments in the Philippines, India, Brunei and Hong Kong. He has been involved in watershed Asia stories including the Ninoy Aquino assassination, the ousters of Ferdinand Marcos in the Philippines and former Indonesian President Suharto, the Tiananmen Square crackdown in Beijing, Hong Kong’s handover to China, the Asian financial crisis and the continuing impact of the rise of China on the region and the world. Over the years, Zoher has interviewed many of Asia’s leaders.

An ethnic Indian born and raised in Hong Kong, Zoher is a fluent Cantonese speaker and a British national. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Jacqueline Francis

Jacqueline Francis, Ph.D., is a writer, curator, art historian, and educator. She is the author of Making Race: Modernism and “Racial Art” in America (2012). With Ruth Fine, she co-edited Romare Bearden: American Modernist (2011). With Kathy Zarur, she co-curated the contemporary art exhibition “Where Is Here” for the Museum of the Diaspora in 2016-17.

Francis presently serves on the Advisory Boards of Panorama: Art and Visual Culture of the United States, Third Text: Critical Perspectives on Contemporary Art and Culture, and San Francisco’s Luggage Store Gallery. She is also Board President of the Queer Cultural Center (QCC), a resource and site for LGBT artistic expression in San Francisco.

Francis is an Associate Professor and Chair of the Graduate Program in Visual and Critical Studies at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco.

Yumi Goto

Yumi Goto is an independent photography curator, editor, researcher, consultant, educator and publisher who focuses on the development of cultural exchanges that transcend borders.

She collaborates with local and international artists who live and work in areas affected by conflict, natural disasters, current social problems, human rights abuses and women’s issues. She often works with human rights advocates, international and local NGOs, humanitarian organizations and as well as being involved as a nominator and juror for the international photographic organizations, festivals and events.
She is now based in Tokyo and also a co-founder and curator for the Reminders Photography Stronghold which is a curated membership gallery space in Tokyo enabling a wide range of photographic activities.

Kevin WY Lee

Kevin WY Lee is a photographer and creative director based in Singapore. He participates vigorously in photography and art across the region as a practitioner, curator, producer and editor. In 2010, he founded Invisible Photographer Asia (IPA), an influential platform for Photography & Visual Arts in Asia.

Kevin has been a curator and nominator for various festivals and programs, including the Angkor Photo Festival, Prix Pictet Award and PhotoQuai Biennale. He has also served as a jury for international competitions including the Feature Shoot Emerging Photography Awards, Singapore Creative Circle Awards, and Kuala Lumpur International Photoawards. Most recently, he authored the photobook Suddenly The Grass Became Greener.

Leung Po Shan, Anthony

Belonging to the last generation of university of students under the colonial rule, Leung studied Fine Arts at the Chinese University of Hong Kong but witnessed the Handover as a reporter. Weaving through art and politics, she teaches, writes, researches, cooks, meditates and takes to the streets. She was a member of Para/Site Art Space and In-Media (Hong Kong). Currently, she is a PhD candidate in Cultural Studies at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Her research interests include, among others, artistic labour, city space and cultural politics. Her essays and commentaries have been published in the Hong Kong Economic Journal, InMedia (Hong Kong), City Magazine, Leap, etc. Publications edited by her include Modern Art in a Colony: Narrated by Hon Chi-fan at the Millennium, Odd One In: Hong Kong Diary (by Pak Sheung-cheun), QK – Specimen Collection of Chan Yuk Keung, The Red Twenty-years of Ricky Yeung Sau-churk etc.

Profile Picture by Topaz Leung

Gladys Li

Gladys Li studied law at and graduated from Cambridge University. She was called to the Bar of England and Wales after which she practised as a barrister in chambers in London for 10 years before returning home to Hong Kong in 1982 where she entered full-time practice as a barrister. Shortly thereafter, she became a member of the Bar Council.

Her professional practice in human rights and administrative law began when she acted for Vietnamese asylum-seekers in the late 1980s and early 1990s. At the same time, she took a keen interest in Hong Kong’s future after the Joint Declaration and became a member of the Lobby Group set up to inform British MPs about the importance of the rule of law in Hong Kong, the absence of human rights protections and the lack of democracy.   In 1995 and 1996, she became Chairperson of the Hong Kong Bar Association.

As a member of the Article 23 Concern Group set up with fellow lawyers, she contributed to writing pamphlets to inform the public about the criminal offences  which the HKSAR was expected to legislate for under the Basic Law Article 23.   

She is a founding member of Civic Party and a member of HK2020, of which Mrs. Anson Chan, former chief secretary, is the convener.

She co-authored a chapter on the legal status of Functional Constituencies in “Functional Constituencies A Unique Feature of the Hong Kong Legislative Council”, published by Hong Kong University Press in 2006 and has appeared in cases before and after the handover challenging aspects of the functional constituency system of election.

She continues to practise in the field of constitutional and administrative law and human rights.  She is also a member of the Board of Civic Exchange. 

Sandra S. Phillips

Sandra S. Phillips is Curator Emerita of Photography at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. She has been with the museum since 1987, and assumed the position of Senior Curator in 1999. In 2017 she assumed the position of Curator Emerita. Phillips has organized numerous critically acclaimed exhibitions of modern and contemporary photography including Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera Since 1870Diane Arbus RevelationsHelen LevittDorothea Lange: American PhotographsDaido Moriyama: Stray DogCrossing the Frontier: Photographs of the Developing WestPolice Pictures: The Photograph as Evidence and An Uncertain Grace: Sebastião Salgado. She holds degrees from the City University of New York (Ph.D.), Bryn Mawr College (M.A.), and Bard College (B.A.). Phillips was previously curator at the Vassar College Art Museum, and has taught at various institutions including the State University of New York, New Paltz; Parsons School of Design; San Francisco State University; and the San Francisco Art Institute. She was a Resident at the American Academy in Rome and received a grant from The Japan Foundation in 2000.