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Carp & Dragon

In this continuation of our serial, we examine the social context of art in the MTR stations. Successful artists provoke shared memories and emotions, expose us to different perspectives and enrich our environment by providing appealing reminders of our cultures. 

Japanese artist Akira Yoshida unifies the Japanese affiliation for dogs with the Chinese affiliation for carp and dragons to create this original sculpture for the City One MTR station. In Japanese folklore, a dog can identify and warn of demons. This eventually led to the practice of creating Inu Hariko, that is, papier-mâché dog charms to protect children. Over time, Inu Hariko came to be cute toys.                           

For this installation, Yoshida sculpted the traditional shape of the Inu Hariko and on their sides exquisitely airbrushed patterns of carp, which represents success and hard work, and dragons, which represent strength and fortune. The results are adorable sculptures that invite touching hands and photographs. 

Text Martin Wray / Photos Dave Chung