• Issue
  • Mar 01, 2023

Jes Fan: Precious Wounds

Detail of Mother of Pearl, 2021, color print on satin, 76.2 × 127cm. Photo by Daniel Vincent Hansen. All images courtesy the artist and Empty Gallery, Hong Kong, unless otherwise stated.

In late 2022, for the first time since the pandemic began, I was able to fly the 15 hours from the United States to Hong Kong with my mother to visit our family. We had been planning the reunion with my relatives for more than one year. Still, I could not have anticipated how emotional I would feel to be able to travel again to a place that had always felt like a cultural home. Just three months earlier, artist Jes Fan was making a similar journey from New York to reunite with his immediate family, whom he hadn’t seen in three years. He landed the day after the government ended Hong Kong’s quarantine measures. “I arrived with a full plane of babies,” he remembered, alluding to the many parents bringing their one- and two-year-olds back with them for the first time. “They were crying, but it was adorable.”