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Higher [Dior- orDi]

printed 2015


Hiram To

Hong Kong, Australia

11 Jul 1964 – 13 Mar 2017

No image
  • Details

    printed 2015
    Media category
    Materials used
    photographic print face mounted on acrylic
    175.0 x 63.0 cm approx
    Gift of Scott Redford 2021
    Not on display
    Accession number
    © Hiram To
    Artist information
    Hiram To

    Works in the collection


  • About

    Born in Hong Kong in 1964, Hiram To lived in Scotland in the late 1970s and early 80s before settling in Brisbane, Australia in 1986. In Australia To quickly established himself within the local contemporary art scene by exhibiting in solo and group exhibitions in artist run spaces, commercial galleries, regional galleries and universities across the country during the late 80s and early to mid-90s.
    To returned to Hong Kong permanently in the mid 1990s and steadily built an international career by exhibiting at Taipei, London, Hong Kong, Düsseldorf, and Frankfurt. In 1994 he became the first artist from Hong Kong to stage a solo exhibition in a major contemporary art gallery in Britain (Camden Art Centre), and in 2002 he was featured in a survey exhibition at the Winnipeg Art Gallery in Canada. In 2007, To was one of three artists chosen to represent Hong Kong at the 52nd Biennale of Venice.

    To died suddenly and unexpectedly, in the prime of his career, at his home in Hong Kong in 2017.

    The self-portrait Higher [Dior- orDi] addresses one of the key concerns within To’s practice, the slick and seductive aesthetics of fashion and commercial advertising. In this work To riffs off an original Christian Dior advertisement for Dior’s ‘Higher’ men’s cologne. Dressed as the model, To inhales a bottle of the cologne, eyes closed in rapture. It is as if he is getting high off a drug, a play on the work’s title and a comment on the irresistable allure of fashion marketing. The work’s large scale – almost double life-size, intensifies the otherworldly and aspirational effect.

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 1 exhibition

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 1 publication

    • Joan Padgett, Hiram To: don't let me be misunderstood, Manitoba, 2002, 80, 92 (colour illus.), 93 (colour illus.), detail, 95, 97 (colour illus.), 122 (colour illus.), front & back cover (colour illus.).

Other works by Hiram To