Artist Statement


Ono creates installations using time and memory as its 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 the world. We artists must face uncertainty and identify the subtle changes in this world, 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 marry the past to the present, and throw a gaze into the future.

‘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 portrayal of the unknown and the known, an acknowledgement of the uncontrollable nature of the world around us and also a chain of hope. I imagine my works to live through time and change over time, so the works naturally take a form of 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. My role as a creator is to give contour to a narrative by helping it make a poetic gesture.'