Two giant rubber ducks debut in Hong Kong in bid to drive “double happiness”

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A woman poses for a photo as an art installation, dubbed “Double Ducks” by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman, is seen in the background at Victoria Harbour, in Hong Kong, China June 9, 2023. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

HONG KONG (Reuters) – A pair of Rubber Ducks made a splash in Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour on Friday, part of an art installation dubbed “Double Ducks” by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman, who says he hopes the ducks will bring happiness to the city.

The inflatable yellow ducks, 18 metres (59 feet) high, will sail on the harbour for two weeks and come a decade after Hofman’s “Rubber Duck” sculpture drew crowds in the Asian financial hub in 2013.

Hofman said his pair of ducks represent “twice the fun, double the happiness” and bring new excitement to Hong Kong.

“I hope it will bring as much pleasure as it did in the past and in a world where we suffered from a pandemic, wars and political situation, I think it’s the right moment to bring back the double luck.”

Curator AllRightsReserved (ARR) said the ducks were like the symmetrical Chinese characters “xi” for happiness and “peng” for friends.

Hofman, who was inspired by a world map and rubber duck to create his giant inflatable rubber duck installation, began a world tour starting from the Netherlands in 2007, making stops in harbours from France to Brazil.

Stationed near Hong Kong’s central district and Tamar Park, the ducks swam across Victoria Harbour to the delight of dozens of bystanders.

Anna, a 40-year old woman, who was walking the promenade said she enjoyed seeing the ducks.

“We would like more installation art like the rubber ducks in Hong Kong. Right now there isn’t much space for art in Hong Kong if we compare it to Macau or Shenzhen, they have more art installations.”

A 40-year-old engineer named Kane said the ducks were positive for Hong Kong. “It’s a silver lining when the society is in such low spirits. It’s better the government to spend public money on this than on other areas.”

(Reporting by Justin Fung, Jessie Pang and Joyce Zhou; Writing by Farah Master; editing by Michael Perry)

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