An exhibition commemorating Bruce Lee’s life, cut short by his sudden death forty years ago when he was 32, opens today in Hong Kong.
The iconic martial artist’s yellow track suit and nunchaku, a Japanese weapon he popularized in his films, are among hundreds of items on display in the exhibit, which will run for five years at the Hong Kong Heritage Museum.
“He was on the cutting edge of film making, martial arts, fitness, philosophy,” said Shannon Lee, Bruce Lee’s daughter and chairwoman of the Bruce Lee Foundation, at the opening ceremony yesterday. “But I think his true relevance holds in the example of his life, his legacy, and also in his philosophy, which has continued to inspired so many people around the world.”
The exhibition, “Bruce Lee: Kung Fu. Art. Life”, recreates famous scenes from Lee’s movies, including the mirror fight scene in “Enter the Dragon,” the final film Lee completed. It also features Lee’s letters written in different stages of his life and to different people, sometimes to himself.
“I, Bruce Lee, will be the first highest paid Oriental super star in the United States,” Lee wrote in a letter dated 1969. “In return I will give the most exciting performances and render the best of quality in the capacity of an actor.”
Lee was born in San Francisco and grew up in Hong Kong, where he began training under Chinese martial arts master Yip Man at the age of 13, according to the foundation website. He taught kung fu to support his study at the University of Washington, where he majored in philosophy, and later opened a number of kung fu schools around the U.S.