Artist Statement


Ono creates installations, photographs and films using time and memory as his central medium, and addresses themes of human condition, geopolitical boundaries, and the history which the world has forgotten or de-experienced. In his decade filming Asia as a news cameraman, Ono had witnessed the rapidity with which stories and images decay as well as the role of society and the media in discouraging some stories. Ono creates his work in response to this past experience as a journalist.

'This generation refuses absolute explanations and the rule of political philosophies, but wishes to affirm men and women in their flesh and in their striving for liberty. This generation does not believe the achievement of universal happiness and satisfaction is possible, but it does believe in diminishing human sorrow. It is because the world, in its essence, unhappy, that we need to create some joy. Because the world is unjust we need to work towards justice. And because the world is absurd, we must provide it with all its meaning.' -Albert Camus (1946)

'I think the current state of the world is not so different from how Camus looked at it in 1946, and I do not think my generation is any different from his generation in how we feel about this world. This world of ours rolls on. Life is easier if we let other people think. I believe artist(s) must do the opposite. We must carefully observe the world; uncertainty, absurdity and cruelty that exists in it. We must identify the subtle changes, and must strive to deliver our views and the ideas with honesty, more sensitivity, more justice and more empathy,’ Ono has said.

Time plays an active role in the unfolding of Ono's work. Many of his ongoing projects mark time and tell durational stories that tie the past to the present, and throw a gaze into the future that is just yet to become present.

‘My chief medium is time, and I make collages with time and memory (that of either individual or collective.) The work I produce today is a view, a perspective, a portrayal of the unknown and the known, an acknowledgement of the uncontrollable nature of the world around us. And, I feel that it is also a chain of hope... My work revisits the past, lives the present moment and creates the memories of the future. I encourage my work to live through time and change over time, so it is natural that they become a durational experience. Every form will pass away, but there remains the essence. The essence is in an idea, in our thinking and in our imagination.'

'I see my role as a creator is to give contour to a narrative by helping it make a poetic gesture and create a slightly more lasting resonance.'