See You Again Yin Lam - 再見彥霖

Ricker Choi (b. 1975)

See You Again Yin Lam
再見彥霖

Digital art print on PVC foam board
24 x 30 in.
Executed in 2022

On September 22, 2019, 15-year-old Chan Yin-Lam’s naked corpse was found floating in the sea. Her mother asserted that she killed herself but this was met with scepticism because Chan was an award-winning swimmer, hence unlikely that she killed herself by drowning.  At that time, the HK police had been exposed to have raped and tortured protesters in custody, and were now rumoured to have murdered Chan for participating in the 2019 Hong Kong protests.  Chan's body was cremated hastily, on the day after police had confirmed that Chan is the body found at sea.  This further stirred up suspicion that the police had murdered her.  In fact, former forensic pathologist Philip Beh Swan-lip commented that the circumstances surrounding her body’s discovery and its hasty cremation were suspicious: naked bodies discovered at sea are usually treated as suspicious and would generally lead to thorough investigations.

In this painting, the artist imagines Chan comes back home to visit Hong Kong on Sept 22, when Hong Kongers also say goodbye to her again so she will not be forgotten.  The Chinese title of this work is '再見彥霖', in which '再見' can means both "see you again" and "good bye".  (“彥霖” is her Chinese name).  She is riding on a yellow umbrella, a symbol of HK's pro-democracy movement because umbrella is used to defend against water cannon.