RED-WHITE-BLUE AS THE CORE OF HONG KONG

HF Crewon June 14, 2014 at 5:34 pm

The combination of red-white-blue (RWB) may instantaneously draw you to the alluring France, but for the vast majority in the territory (especially those who were born and raised locally), the union of the three colors is perceived to trigger their stream of consciousness reminiscing the time when people carried their RWB baggage around.

Indeed, RWB transcends temporal and geographical constraints. It stands as a timeless testimony to witness the ever-blossoming and prospering Hong Kong. The light goodies became popular in the early 70s, which was mainly used as a temporary sheltering for farms. When agriculture eventually faded out and economic boom takes place, the three-color-striped canvas was transformed into a user-massively-friendly baggage of all sizes. This cannot be done without the owner of “Wah Ngai Canvas,” Lee Wah, who created the indispensable goodies for us, especially the busy travelers commuting between Hong Kong and Mainland China. With the multi-faceted function that the almost weightless bag can offer, it is no wonder the RWB bag is hailed as one of the MUST-haves in Hong Kong. In this light, to say that almost every household has one RWB bag (then, if not now) is definitely not an overstatement.

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While we are often amazed at how light yet overwhelmingly durable the three-color-striped bag is, it is time to peruse how the nylon-canvas bag epitomizes the Hong Kong spirits. Its light, water-proof and unbreakable characteristics (under normal circumstances) act as the best epitome of Hong Kongers’ adaptability, endurance, flexibility, perseverance and the list goes on and on. Like the RWB, Hong Kongers can overcome the hardship, chin up, and keep marching on at all times.

Yes, RWB is never out-of-phase. Its status and significance in the modernity can be manifested on the art projects leaded by Stanley Wong (Anothermountainman). Hailed as the father of RWB, Stanley endeavored to revitalize RWB by adding in contemporary artistic elements. We can always take the best vantage point to peruse Stanley’s aesthetic and architectural realization of the RWB concept in our vibrant city.

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The collaboration (RWB 330 Concept Store) between Stanley and the New Life Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association is yet another realization of the contemporary RWB art with a good cause. Apart from perpetuating the culture of RWB and the associated Hong Kong spirits, the social enterprise, RWB 330 endeavored to make a public statement about the positive Hong Kong by helping people in recovery of mental illness integrate into our society.  At the store, you can find a wide array of products in the fashionable RWB print.

TEXT: ROSA M
GRAPHICS: CHRIS Y/ HOKK FABRICA
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