Lai-Fong Wong
Scarith, 2021
83 Pages, 31 Illustrations
ISBN 978-1-7348659-2-9 Paperback

For BULK ORDERS, order directly from New Academia Publishing.

About the Author

Lai-Fong Wong 黃千芳is an art critic, writer, poet, art educator, aesthete and mixed media artist, as well as a hybrid of fashion and furniture designer.  Publishing in the areas of art, art criticism and poetry, she also exhibited her art works widely across Hong Kong and overseas. Lai-Fong graduated from The Chinese University of Hong Kong, majoring in philosophy, in 1976 and later gained her Diploma of Education in Art Section from the same University; Wong obtained her Bachelor of Fine Art degree in Art and Design from the Washington State University of Pullman in 1981; she has also gained a Master’s Degree in Aesthetics and Education for the Arts at the University of Bristol of the United Kingdom, and her Ph.D. at The Chinese University of Hong Kong, focusing on Comparative Study & Sociology of Art Curriculum Paradigm in 2004.

With a strong background in academic research and word publication, Lai-Fong served the lecturer, at the Hong Kong Institute of Education, in Creative Arts, from 1995-2004; she has been working as a Program Developer, Professional Trainer & Consultant for Arts Education/ Curriculum Development at the Education Bureau of Hong Kong, 2004-2016, and taken on the role of art curator for The Airport Authority Hong Kong, 2018-2019.

Having been named Chosen Artists for Winning Entry at the Contemporary Hong Kong Art Biennial Exhibitions, 1994, 1996, 1998, and honored with the Ideco International Painting Award in Spain (the Grand Prize) in 1997, Wong has extensive publications on poetry and art, including The Water Melon’s Mind – Dialogue between Paintings and Poems Form 1997-2003: Travelogue of Time: Napped in The Episode (2003) and Travelogue of Time: KongKong 7Macau 10 (2003), Poetic seeing: Implementing curriculum reform through the development of multimedia, London: Kogan Page (2001), Poetic Visions of Water & Soil Mutuality (1996).

Lai-Fong is currently the Chair of Moonz Art Creative Centre and has been the Art Director of ZIII Art & Playgame Ltd., which have been producing lines of artistic fashions, Installing and displaying of interior art in different series. By the combination of modern technology with traditional workmanship, the device of her designed works is to be styled for meeting with the unique context of both modern Pragmatism and Postmodern conception.

As an adjunct faculty member of the Educational Psychology Department at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Lai-Fong specializes in areas such as “Aesthetic Experience and Creative Expression”.  Her recent practice also focuses on “experimental urbanism”, integrating green art, 3D installment design and public engagement by connecting with local and international artists and poet.


About the book

“ZEN” (A Japanese term originated from the Chinese Buddhism “Chen” 禪) is implied to a sensual state of mind under a meditative phenomenon.  During the process of Zen practice, practitioners, at the highest levels, are expected to imagine sitting in the middle of the fire and keeping clam.  Hong Kong was in a social turmoil that the public thoroughly displayed an art of Zen on fire philosophically for its constant protesting activities during the year of 2019.

Most Hong Kong protesters have been willing to go through the “fire” for re-identifying themselves, whereas all personal senses are to be refining over the fire of love and hostility, passion and confusion, leading lives to enlighten for a new page of complete democratization on their homeland.  Such kind of devotion have successfully motivated a massive movement amid young people for turning their original weak habits into waves of diverse and activating strength, the calm be shock, peaceable be forceable, and vice versa. When lighting a fire on positive purpose, there is a paradoxical martyr’s emotion for aesthetically “burning into ash” as an ending.

Hong Kong’s temporal anti-extradition social movement has chronically been rooted on a dramatic shift of civilian identity and a sense of belonging since the United Kingdom handed over its 100-year-ruling colony back to Communist China in 1997.  Metaphorically, it generates symbiotic effects beyond a single regional defiance on itself and gradually extends to a totally unexpected universal context.


“Lai Fong Wong’s book is a contribution to history, literature and the human spirit; for, while the book speaks of current happenings, it relates to all time and all matter. Resistance and release exist at once, in this new world, defined by poems and illustrations that animate subjects beautifully and powerfully. How does one write of “essence” and “striving” both? Only the Zen experience can make words work these mysteries.  The poet uses compelling mathematical theories in the poem’s composition and at the same time she is a story teller, revealing ideals shattered within the patience of hope. How all this is managed comes only from a writer who has paved her own road, who has navigated the world of language, who is willing to look at the story of suffering; and who has the multidimensional gifts to balance all together. Modernism and lyricism bond here to create a bright light on a dark moment, and thus to transcend time with art, and to replace breakage with passion and focus, It is transformational, what this book beholds. This is a rare voice by one who has mastered the craft to create a world larger than we knew before.”—Grace Cavalieri, Maryland Poet Laureate

“In this astounding book of poems Lai Fong Wong brings language structures to emotions which allow the reader to experience the shatter of protest, love and even the act of meditation. It reveals the intimate, the separate and the desperate desire for humanity to be whole. She renders emotion in various geographies and mathematic equations that  create a stir in the mind and a longing in the heart to reshape what has been shattered. The mixed-and-matched parallels of sensation  are extraordinarily rendered as in the lines, when a tropical cyclone is centered/ a strong wind force blowing near/ upgradable signals no.3,5,8,/- her bitter lover. This collection is a whirlwind of rhyme and rhythm shaped for the taking in. Lai Fong’s poems move in sequences of time and lucky for us, it is on time for our struggling world!”—Sheila Carter-Jones, Ph.D., Author of Three Birds Deep; Former Professor of Education, Chatham University; 2012 Winner of the Naomi Long Madgett Book Award

“This collection of poems by Lai Fong Wong unite shattering loss and grief and a deep and hopeful resilience in the face of tragedy both natural  and man-made.  The poems employ a splintered syntax and mixed diction in lines informed by both ancient and contemporary idioms. In language and image, the opening section of this collection responds to the current, ongoing protest movement in Hong Kong. These poems embody the chaotic rush of humanity toward the ideal as it clashes with the brutal, blunt force of suppression. [Protest 6] ‘The Taoist…’ ends with these lines: ‘Leaderless/Timeless time/No big command/ Just favorite IPhone/ Non-programmatic platform/ It seems nothing to complywith/ But things take the course of their natural own.’ There are poems of love, too: the love of a daughter for her dyingmother to whom she gives a last drink of the juice of watermelon, ofthe bonds of friendship and the erotic touch of lovers. The pages inthis collection are sprinkled with photographic art that helps thisreader to more carefully ponder and reflect upon these deeply feltpoems.”—Ellen Wise, Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation Creative Fellow; Board Member for Perugia Press