Access Denied


–by WU Pak Cheong Issac

Artist Biography

Isaac Wu is a native of Hong Kong. He studied business and law at the University of Hong Kong. During his university studies, he taught himself how to draw his favorite style of art – black-and-white sketches. Having lived in Hong Kong for 20 years since his birth, he draws his ideas and inspiration of art from the fast-paced, stressful living environment of the city. He sees art as a depiction of reality and an emotional outlet, where he uses the black-and-white tone to sketch out his day-to-day life and feelings.

Artist Statement

Art to me is a depiction of real life and an outlet of emotion. My work is a way for me to express my complicated feelings which words are not capable of illustrating.

This artwork is inspired by the way people and I react to negative emotions in life. This sketch is an appropriation art of an online Photoshop artwork titled “Large (8)” by artist dibandgazbrothersis. To better illustrate the negative atmosphere, I chose pencil sketches to make use of the black-and-white color tone. Also, as pencil sketch is a simple art form, it is suitable for depicting our rawest feelings at the moment of sadness.

“Access Denied” is a Windows error that appears when we try to access protected files without permission. Here, it means the access to the girl’s feeling is denied because she is defending herself. Refusing the truth is the key message of this artwork. After her initial anger towards the fact that she has cancer, the girl refuses to accept this dramatic change in life. This is a clear sign of denial. In the picture, she is not wearing much clothing, this represents her vulnerable state of mind. Her phone and laptop are all switched off, meaning that she is avoiding the reality by refusing contact with the real world. She is curling up in bed, which is a defensive position, as can be seen throughout the collection. Another linkage throughout the collection is the umbrella lying on the ground, which symbolizes defense – the crux of denial.

When you look at this work, you can easily relate to this girl, because refusing the truth is a common and relatable reaction towards denial.