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The Apple Doesn’t Fall Far From The Tree

Exhibition details

Opening / Event Date:
28 January, 2022
11:00 am - 6:00 pm
Closing / End Date:
12 March, 2022
Event Category:
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Over the Influence is thrilled to debut The Apple Doesn’t Fall Far From The Tree, a new painting exhibition by Austin Harris. This marks the artist’s first presentation in Hong Kong, and the second with the gallery. This series dives deeper into Harris’s relationship with his childhood and explores the tropes of modern-day toxic masculinity.

Harris’s practice is an exploration and critique of the environment he spent his formative years in. Growing up in a rural community, the artist was surrounded by hyper masculine behavior, drugs, alcohol, violence, and misogyny from both his peers and family. As time went on, Harris began to understand these values and behaviors were not authentic to himself and was consequently becoming a product of this environment. While his peers seemed to be following in their parents’ footsteps, the artist began to work against the perceived norm.

Throughout this exhibition, Harris critiques themes of toxic masculine traits, behavior, and heroes. Harris expresses his empathy and continues hope for change through scenes and poignant figures that are imbued with a wry humor. The clown motif seen throughout the series exemplifies the hyper-masculine performance that Harris felt his father, friends, and himself acted to fit in. In The Apple Doesn’t Fall Far From The Tree, the namesake of the series, Harris conveys a father son relationship that is overrun by this performative masculinity.

While the son still dons the clown costuming, showing he is innately following in his father’s footsteps, the artist shows there is still hope for the boy. While the father is still chained metaphorically and literally to his outdated beliefs, the son is free from chains. This conveys hope to the viewer; hope for the boy, the father, and oneself, that we are all not destined to be products of our environments, and we have autonomy over who we become.


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