Clock Tower & International Commerce Center

L1010643 Panorama

The Clock Tower is a landmark in Hong Kong. It is located on the southern shore of Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon. It is the only remnant of the original site of the former Kowloon Station on the Kowloon-Canton Railway. Officially named Former Kowloon-Canton Railway Clock Tower (Chinese: 前九廣鐵路鐘樓), it is usually referred to as the Tsim Sha Tsui Clock Tower (Chinese: 尖沙咀鐘樓) for its location. (Source Wikipedia)

The Hong Kong International Commerce Centre (Chinese: 環球貿易廣場) (abbr. ICC Tower) is a 118-storey(see below), 484 m (1,588 ft) commercial skyscraper completed in 2010 in West Kowloon, Hong Kong. It is a part of the Union Square project built on top of Kowloon Station. As of 2013, it is the world’s seventh tallest building by height, world’s third tallest building by number of floors, as well as the tallest building in Hong Kong.  (Source Wikipedia)

Can you spot the Clock Tower in the panorama?

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“Hong Kong Parr” Exhibition – Guided tour at Blindspot Gallery

First off apologies for the crappy images in this post.  I was holding a pile of Martin Parr books (yet to be autographed) while single handedly taking photos with my iPhone. Luckily I wasn’t the one who was told by Parr to take the lens cap off his Leica film camera after he had taken a photo of Parr with the lens cap on. The good many there had a great laugh at the man’s expense.  Without missing a beat Parr said: “All good photographers throw away their lens caps.”

I learned a great deal on this guided tour about the photos on display and about Parr’s approach to photography. He professes that he takes “many more bad photographs then everyone in the room.” Yes and he definitely takes a lot more good ones as a result.  The “happy accidents” are the fruits of a disciplined work ethic which produces a prodigious amount of good photos.  Although he’s too humble to say a good sense of the moment and eye for composition also helps.

Parr is reluctant to talk about the meaning behind his photos. According to him, his first priority is to entertain. The “agenda biting at you underneath” is for you to figure out. Regarding the “Hong Kong” series of photos Parr explains they were commissioned by the Blindspot Gallery and some of the photos address the relationship between Hong Kong and mainland China. In particular the enormous amounts of wealth on display by the mainland Chinese in Hong Kong shopping for luxury items and expensive condos.

A few more interesting tidbits were offered up by Parr during the tour:

  • He always goes to Happy Valley (race course?) every time he is in Hong Kong
  • Each good photo has some sort of twist or story behind it
  • He uses very light flash to make the colors pop
  • When the subject looks at the camera it usually destroys the photo
  • Sometimes when the subject looks at the camera it works
  • Parr never hangs his photos at home and prefers to display works from others
  • He has over 800 prints from other photographers

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57 Years of History

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Starting from the top:

Leica T (2014)
Leica R8 (1996)
Leica M7 (2002)
Leica M9 (2009)
Leica R7 (1994)
Leica IIIg (1957)
Leica X1 (2010)

Classic Leica cameras with finishes from vulcanite to hand polished aluminium.  Need to add more models released from 1957 to 1994 to my collection!  Any recommendations?