The heavy-hand of Hong Kong’s Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD) stunts the enjoyment of many of the city’s public spaces. LCSD guards have told us we couldn’t “frolick”, lean over railings (to better view the fish pond), or even sip from a juice box at Nan Lian Gardens. They have warned us away from the edge of a turtle pond in Hong Kong Park. By observation, I have deduced that their general policy is to discourage all of the sorts of things kids like to do in public open spaces.
In striking contrast, the Moble M+ INFLATION! exhibit is a wonderland of freedom and bliss. At “Inflation!” the public is allowed to walk, skip or (even) run through what feels like a swiftly tidied up construction site — uneven surfaces(!), clumps of tall weedy grass (!), mud (!) — to see, touch and explore a series of huge, irreverent inflated sculptures.
The real surprise highlight is what appears at a distance as simply an inflated Stonehenge replica.
But which turns out to be a massive “bouncy castle” that everyone can (and does!) jump on:
Old and young alike delight in running, jumping, sitting and falling all over the sculpture’s green, bouncy surface. It’s all smiles and just a few common sense restrictions:
The whole experience is unexpected, mind-freeing, and fun.
Go now, before a net of rules is thrown over the whole thing. It’s on through June 9th at the West Kowloon Cultural District (which, fortuitously, is not managed by LCSD).