Giant inflatable ducks make a splash in Hong Kong

Two giant inflatable ducks are making a splash in Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbor, in the return of a pop-art project that sparked a frenzy in the city a decade ago

Pop-art project returns after 10 years – inflatable ducks

HONG KONG — Two giant inflatable ducks made a splash in Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbor on Friday. Marking the return of a pop-art project that sparked a frenzy in the city a decade ago.

The two 18-meter-tall yellow ducks by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman resemble the bath toys many played with in their childhood. Shortly after their launch, dozens of residents and tourists flocked to the promenade near the government headquarters in Admiralty to snap photos of the ducks.

Hofman said he hopes the art exhibition brings joy to the city and connects people as they make memories together.

“Double duck, double luck,” he said. “In a world where we suffered from a pandemic, wars and political situation. I think it is the right moment to bring back the double luck.”

The inflatable ducks will stay in Hong Kong for about two weeks.

Many Hong Kongers at the promenade recalled the happiness his work brought to the shopping district of Tsim Sha Tsui in 2013. Some were excited to see a pair of ducks on Friday instead of just one duck like the earlier exhibition.

Among the visitors was artist Laurence Lai, who brought paint brushes to make watercolors of the ducks. Lai said the city was full of negative vibes in recent years during the COVID-19 pandemic. And that it’s time for the city to move on.

“With life returning to normal, the ducks can bring back some positivity,” the 50-year-old said.

Shenzhen resident Eva Yang and her young daughters were also happy to see the ducks, saying they made their sightseeing in Hong Kong more memorable.

In 2013, residents and tourists packed streets near the Tsim Sha Tsui pier to catch a glimpse of Hofman’s duck.

That duck’s stint in Hong Kong unintentionally turned political on the social media platform Weibo around the anniversary of Beijing’s Tiananmen crackdown in 1989. Chinese censors blocked searches for the term “big yellow duck” after netizens shared an image in which the tanks in the iconic “ Tank man” image were replaced with a line of oversized giant rubber ducks.

Hofman’s rubber ducks have been on a world tour since 2007.

Organisers behind Hong Kong’s giant rubber ducks say they deflated 1 of duo following safety inspection

The organisers behind two giant rubber ducks anchored in Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour on Saturday. Said they had decided to deflate one of the duo after an inspection found its surface had stretched due to the hot weather.

Scores of residents flocked to the waterfront between Central and Wan Chai to catch a glimpse of the installations under the scorching sun. Only to find one of them remaining. The ducks arrived in the harbour a day ago.

The art show titled “The Double Ducks by Florentijn Hofman”, featuring the 18-metre (59-foot) figures, is organised by Hong Kong-based art studio AllRightsReserved. Which had said it hoped the display would spread “double happiness”.

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