Ethnic diversity: Filipinos, Indonesians, Thai, South Asians, Africans, Mixed & Whites, and more…make 8% of the total population of Hong Kong (of 7.5 million people)!
*data from iNaturalist City Nature Challenge 2020
Get plugged into Nature!
Like you see on the map, Hong Kong is a multi-colored city.
This project invites women and men from different ethnic traditions, reflecting their different lens to see their second home and multi-cultural makeup of it through taking pictures of nature near them. More often, plants and trees, their scent reminds one of her or his childhood memory in home country. A gesture of insects can remind one to pray more; a white flower is a sign of memorial…
Photos & short reflections of nature near a few individuals from 5 nationalities will take us to streets, urban parks, somewhere near their homes, somewhere close to their hearts of memories, to one’s inner self.
Their stories will remind us to “stop, look & listen” to what’s around us. Accompanied by a watercolor postcard. Each story is retold by a slow process of painting, to celebrate that moment when we are closest.
Something small but beautiful in the middle of tall buildings
Wild mushroom @ Tamar Park – Central & Western district Promenade
“This makes me think about how small and vulnerable we are, living among huge things that we can’t understand and make us feel insignificant.
But in truth, we are all part of the beauty of God’s creation and we have a purpose.”
-Alfie Diaz from Argentina
He is a missionary from Argentina, has been living in HK for one year & 8 months.
Mogra…Jasmine Sambac…Arabian Jasmine…
"I found it growing on the roadside at the start of Bowen Road near Adventist Hospital in Wanchai District. Its fragrance wafting on a humid breeze draws my attention to the plants growing luxuriously on the roadside.”
“A fragrant flower that I know from my days growing up in India. We call it Mogra. We used it to make little garlands to wear in our hair and offer at the temple.”
-Amrita Shodhan from India
Amrita is a housewife (mostly full-time), and has been living in Hong Kong for 4 years.
The word “mantis” comes from the Greek word “prophet” (mantikos). This insect’s forelegs are clasped together as if they are in prayer. They are spiritual!
“I saw this praying mantis outside of our flat as I left to go to work. He got my attention and reminded me of praying everyday despite the unlikely situation we are all facing.”
-Ariel from the Philippines
Ariel Piñero from the Philippines. He works as a church worker in Shatin Church. He’s lived in Hong Kong for more than 4 years.
A tree that comes alive…!
This lust tree is growing out of a piece of dead wood log, being nourished, supported, standing tall. They once didn’t know one another, but now two become one, they can’t live without one another. Sometimes, we ain’t always be the good-looking tree, always on the top’ Are we willing to be this dead log? It looks dull and in the bottom; Yet, it makes another being come alive.
“I love this tree because it is growing up on a dead tree and it is in very good health.”
-Joel from Zimbabwe
Joel Chaukura is an asylum seeker from Zimbabwe. He and his family came to Hong Kong in July, 2019. They live in Kam Tin. As a devoted Christian, he often visited spiritual places and was inspired by nature.
Nature near a Mom
“On the way home, we always stop and my kids take their time to find the flower (Pink Frangipani) that has fallen from the tree but that is perfect for their mummy!”
“I never thought when I was growing up that I would like flowers so much as I do now! Coming from the Caribbean we have in our Island such a variety of colors and flowers, which I took for granted. Being in Hong Kong for the past 6 years, I’ve learned to appreciate little spaces where you can find these beauties, in the midst of an urban area to find these is a gift from God every day! I have taught my kids to appreciate these beautiful flowers and my husband is teaching them that if they can give it to me as a gift!”
-Francheasca Woodman from Puerto Rico
Fran is a missionary from Puerto Rico. Married to a Welsh man, she has two kids who are learning Cantonese at school! The family lives in Chai Wan.
“This year, I learned to see nature through the eye of a child – full of curiosity, asking questions: ‘Why, what? Wow, it’s so beautiful!’ is what my 3-year-old nephew always says. His innocent heart draws him to explore everything interesting around him”
Louisa is a local Hongkonger, she loves nature and cross-cultural stuff. She also likes to think, draw and walk around the city, capturing something ordinary, or extraordinary!
Special thanks to:
媽咪、信信、Fran、Joel、Ariel、Amrita、Alfie、星斗市民and God for his beautiful creation!
I thank you all for showing me part of your cultures, thoughts and traditions by taking part in this little project “nature near me”. It’s amazing to see how creative God is in everything he designs, no matter if it's small or big, in motion or in stillness. And he is sharing this beautiful creation with all of us! I also learned to appreciate my home city again…
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”
-Genesis 1:1, The Bible
Finding, keep on finding…the nature near you :)