Posts tagged with "Hong Kong":

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Art Basel Hong Kong avoids full cancelation by going online

Museums, galleries, and other art-related events across the world are closing to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, yet one institution has devised a clever strategy for continuing its operations with relatively little interruption. Rather than canceling Art Basel Hong Kong 2020 outright, the international art fair has launched Online Viewing Rooms, their very first virtual viewing experience that features over 2,000 artworks collectively valued at over $270 million that would have been on display in the physical setting. “Welcome to Online Viewing Rooms,” the website reads, “our digital platform connecting the world's premier galleries with collectors around the world. Log in now with your Art Basel account and discover a wide array of curated rooms featuring thousands of high-caliber artworks.” The Online Viewing Rooms are currently exhibiting the artworks for sale from 234 galleries based across the world—about 90 percent of the galleries that had originally agreed to participate in the art fair at no cost. “I am so pleased that we are able to provide our exhibitors with an alternative platform to show the wonderful work that they had been working so hard to bring to Hong Kong this spring,” Adeline Ooi, the director Asia for Art Basel’s show in Hong Kong, told Artforum. The concept was developed in 2017 by German art dealer David Zwirner for the online exhibition of his galleries in New York, London, Paris, and Hong Kong. When explaining the alternative viewing experience, he told the New York Times that, “in a funny way, the art world is late to the party if you think about other retail experiences.” Aside from furthering its commitment to the global retail market, the Online Viewing Rooms can also potentially increase attendance while significantly reducing the overall carbon footprint attached to the event. While the exhibition was originally scheduled to be on display at Hong Kong’s Convention and Exhibition Center from March 17 to March 21, the virtual version will run from March 20 to March 25. Time will tell if this year's other art fairs, which are currently feeling the pressure to cancel if they haven’t already, will consider establishing online viewing rooms of their own.
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This seaside kiosk in Hong Kong uses robotics armatures for a cinematic effect

Hong Kong-based firm LAAB Architects has realized the robotic Harbour Kiosk along the Avenue of the Stars, a stretch of the city designed as a tribute to Hong Kongese cinema, on the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront. Originally asked to create a 108-square-foot food kiosk, the architects instead opted to combine the kiosk with a nearby mechanical room. The new 56-foot stretch allowed LAAB to pack in even more functions to the Harbour Kiosk, including a counter, planters, info panels, and drinking fountains. To develop the Harbour Kiosk, LAAB spent four years prototyping and optimizing parametric designs. They didn’t just have to create a structure that could not only accommodate the kiosk’s various uses—including housing equipment for the entire Avenue of Stars—but that would be strong enough to withstand typhoon season.  But perhaps what stands out most is the kiosk’s moving facade. Inspired by local market stalls, red balau timber fins open to grow the kiosk’s size during the day, and close to make it more compact at night. More radically, however, the exterior undulates throughout the day thanks to 49 robotic armatures, which move systematically to mimic the waves in the harbor and help “to establish an emotional connection between the people, the architecture, and the surrounding natural environment,” according to the LAAB team. It was designed to “transform the local street into a kinetic and cinematic scene” in honor of “the action movies that Hong Kong is famous for.”
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The HKIA brings Hong Kong architecture to L.A. in Island__Peninsula

An upcoming exhibition will bring together two vastly different cities on opposite sides of the same ocean. Organized by the Hong Kong Institute of Architects (HKIA), Island__Peninsula is a 14-day public exhibition which aims to compare the contrasting urban landscapes of both Los Angeles and its Chinese counterpart while illustrating what they believe to be a unique “Hong Kong style”.  Sixteen exhibits have bene organized under four themes that encompass the architecture of Hong Kong: glamor, efficiency, orderliness, and constant change. The exhibits will be displayed in the form of “islands”, a concept inspired by a 1975 novel, Island and Peninsula, by Liu Yichang which explores fragments of daily life in the Chinese city composed of 263 islands.  Accordingly, Island__Peninsula will offer a range of both built and conceptual work at various scales from individual homes, high-density towers, streetscapes, and community facilities. Works on view will include a theater emphasizing the traditional Chinese craft of bamboo scaffolding, speculations on transit-oriented developments, and how a university project adapts to the undulating hillside terrain of the city.  Under the “Land of Efficiency” theme, one exhibitor opened a dialogue between the two cities through a project called “Case Study Tower”. Employing the symbolism of Art & Architecture’s Case Study Houses, Chiu Ning and Lau Wai Kin multiplied and composed imagery and drawings of the homes to visualize a fictional tower typical of Hong Kong’s residences.  In concurrence with the exhibition, an interactive installation titled “Skyline Cello” will be on view at Hysan Place in Hong Kong. The artist, Keith Lam, “uses the skyline of Hong Kong and Los Angeles as musical score”, encouraging visitors to create their own "music of the city."  Island__Peninsula was co-curated by Chang Hoi Wood and So Kwok Kin and will run from September 19 through October 2 at the Westfield Oasis Space at Westfield Century City, Los Angeles. 
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Hong Kong's newest opera house makes waves with an aluminum fin facade

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The Xiqu Cultural Center, located in Hong Kong’s Kowloon district, was developed as a regional hub for traditional Chinese opera. The project, designed by Vancouver and Hong Kong–based architecture firm Revery Architecture, was inspired by the diaphanous theater curtains. About 13,000 curved aluminum fins, arranged as a series of waves, clad all of the structure's elevations. The project rises as a box-like volume enclosing a multi-story entrance atrium and performance spaces. The flowing character of the facade, paired with subtle openings at each corner, produces a dynamic enclosure that floods the interior with natural light. Costing over $300 million, the project is the first of dozens of cultural centers planned for the area surrounding the newly opened West Kowloon railway station.
  • Facade Manufacturer & Installer SINGYES/MRW
  • Architects Revery Architcture
  • Facade Consultants Front Inc.
  • Location Hong Kong
  • Date of Completion 2018
  • System Custom-unitized curtainwall and rainscreen aluminum panel system
  • Products Marine-grade aluminum alloy 5754
Every panel is of a similar dimension, approximately 8-feet wide and 20-feet tall, and is composed of CNC-cut marine-grade aluminum. Because of the marine-grade aluminum, the facade is capable of withstanding the intensely humid environment of Hong Kong, which naturally corrodes weaker aluminum products. Venelin Kokalov, principal-in-charge of Revery Architecture, said the goal of projecting a natural appearance was crucial to the design team. “The original design was based on copper, which proved to be too expensive. This propelled the search for ways to use a more common material like aluminum and a means to bring out its natural qualities.” To this point, the aluminum was glass-bead blasted rather than painted or glazed with a coating. The facade's fins are structurally glazed to a steel-reinforced aluminum frame and are further supported by intermittent welded studs. The aluminum frame is, in turn, hung off the primary structure with three-way adjustable unitized curtain wall brackets. Working with facade consultant Front Inc. and manufacturer SINGYES/MRW, the design team developed a parametric model to ensure the utmost cost-effective design, fabrication, and installation methods for the facade. The aluminum half-pipes are essentially cut in two to create two identical pieces, each installed with their flat ends facing each other.  Following the fabrication and bead-blasting of the fins, Revery constructed a full-scale mock-up of a facade section for review. "It was only after viewing the full-scale mock-up that we, together with the client, were convinced that this was the right material, and the stainless steel brackets were further modified to reduce the scale of the bracket," continued Kokalov. "We were pleasantly surprised at how much the fins’ appearance varies in different light conditions, seeming to change from grey to pink to gold depending on the ambient light."
 
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The Archigram archives are headed to M+ in Hong Kong

The archives of English architecture collective Archigram are headed to Hong Kong. After Archigram sold its archives to the not-quite-open-yet visual culture museum M+ for $2.37 million in March of last year, the archive was packed into shipping containers—where they sat for nearly a year while the museum waited for permission to export the collection. That’s all changed, as U.K. Culture secretary Jeremy Wright has approved an export permit. At the time of the sale, the Reviewing Committee on the Export of Works of Art and Objects of Cultural Interest, under UK's Arts Council, blocked the export of the archive. After hearing testimony from museum officials, the committee placed a temporary block on the archive’s export in the hopes that a U.K.-based buyer could be found instead. In the last review of the archives, the Reviewing Committee ruled that Archigram’s archives, while a precedent-setting work for contemporary architects, met the body’s three “Waverly criteria” standards. Those criteria are used to determine whether an object has enough national importance for the body to block its export. The archive spans over 10,000 images, half of which have being digitized and made available to the public for free by the University of Westminster in 2010. Ultimately, Secretary Wright made the decision to release the archives to M+, noting the difficulty in finding a buyer who would keep the collection together. M+’s purchase came at the direction of the museum’s curator-at-large Aric Chen. It’s expected that the collection of renderings, technical drawings, collages, drawings, models, ephemera will be accessible to the public, rather than shunted into a research archive. “We'd been working on this acquisition for a long time,” said Chen, “only to have this export issue throw us for a loop. On the bright side, I was happy for Archigram to see their importance reaffirmed in the U.K.—but I'm of course even happier the archive is coming to M+, where it will be equally appreciated, and where we'll work to shed new light on Archigram, from their interactions with the Metabolists of 1960s Japan to their resonance with Hong Kong's urban landscape and the work of many leading Chinese architects working today.” AN has reached out to Archigram members Michael Webb and Peter Cook for comment and will update this story as needed. Although the M+ purchase is a heady one, the museum’s physical headquarters in the West Kowloon Cultural District is still under construction. The 700,000-square-foot, Herzog & de Meuron–designed arts center is expected to open next year.
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Aric Chen steps down from founding Lead Curator role at M+

Architecture curator and former AN columnist Aric Chen has stepped down from his role as the lead curator for design and Architecture at M+ in Hong Kong’s West Kowloon Cultural District and has taken on the title of curator-at-large at the museum. In addition to M+, Chen will be focusing on other curatorial projects as well as teaching, including guest curating the 2018 Beazley Designs of the Year exhibition at London’s Design Museum, from his new base in Shanghai. M+, first proposed in 2007 but currently without a permanent home, is focused mainly on the visual culture of Asia, in a global context, throughout the 20th and 21st centuries. The museum’s collection includes a wide variety of pieces including paintings, architectural models, furniture, digital art, performance art, and more. Following an international design competition in 2013, Herzog & de Meuron were chosen to design M+’s permanent home in West Kowloon. The 700,000-square-foot waterfront museum will resemble a ceramic-and-glass-clad, upside down “T” once complete and will hold over 180,000 square feet of exhibition space, performance spaces, cafes, offices, three theaters, and a rooftop terrace. Construction has been fraught with delays, and there have been fears of cost overruns as the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority fired its main contractor earlier this month. While construction has been put on pause for six weeks as the authority searches for a replacement, the managing body has maintained that the museum will still open in 2020 as previously promised. Chen, who had served as M+’s lead curator since 2012, oversaw the formation of the museum’s design and architecture department and its acquisitions. He also led the establishment of the department’s programming and curatorial team. Chen also served as the first creative director for Beijing Design Week from 2010 to 2012.  His online exhibition NEONSIGNS.HK, an interactive catalog of Hong Kong’s vibrant neon sign ecosystem, won Chen praise when it was released in 2013, and it won a Webby. Chen’s most recent book, Brazil Modern: The Rediscovery of Twentieth-Century Brazilian Furniture, is available now.
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Pavilion in Hong Kong uses mirrored walls to blend into its surroundings

After winning a competition in 2014, the M+ Pavilion for the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority (WKCDA) in Hong Kong has just been completed. Drawing on design expertise from VPANG Architects Ltd., Tynnon Chow from JET Architecture Inc, and architect Lisa Cheung, the team delivered a flexible space that will play host a range of small-scale exhibitions and events. 

All born in Hong Kong, the team of designers and architects met in New York in 1999 but since then had all gone their separate ways. The M+ Pavilion was an opportunity for the trio to meet up once again and "produce a design meaningful to Hong Kong."

Here, in the WKCDA, the group have employed mirrored external walls to reflect its verdant surroundings. Located within the the Art Park, the pavilion offers a welcoming space of respite from the frantic city life. The mirrors also allow the pavilion to blend into the sky. Floating above the foliage, visitors viewing art in the gallery can also take in views of Victoria Harbor and the Hong Kong skyline. The gallery itself uses polished concrete flooring and white interior walls, creating a space that can be used for a diverse array of events, including exhibitions and performances.

“The way the first prize winning design fitted into the landscape and frames the views of Hong Kong, creating an outdoor space, which easily flows into a well-proportioned space, are merits of the design," said Co-chairman of the awarding Jury Panel and Executive Director of M+, Dr. Lars Nittve said in 2014. "It also allows for certain design flexibility and consideration, essential for a small-scale exhibition space like this."

Mr Michael Lynch, Chief Executive Officer, added: “I am delighted that the winning design team is formed by three Hong Kong-born, young and energetic architects, and will look forward to seeing them make a significant contribution to the development of the WKCD site.”

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Sou Fujimoto crafts a stylish interior for a Hong Kong restaurant

Japanese architect Sou Fujimoto has realized his design for the interior of Potato Head, an Indonesian food chain in Hong Kong, his first project in the country. Drawing on traditional and minimalist styles, the open space houses a restaurant, retail space, music room, and coffee shop. At the entrance, display units made from white metal fixings stand alongside plantings. The vegetation is suspended in stainless steel planters creating a "floating forest"—a nod to Potato Heads tropical roots. Other references to the food chain's Indonesian heritage can be found with 700 hand-painted panels from the Toraja people that cover the walls. Externally, the building's facade displays a geometric pattern reminiscent of traditional window framing found in the area. The display units showcase Fujimoto's customary structural style, similar to the architect's 2013 Serpentine Pavilion. The eatery is located to the rear of the building. In this area, traditional Indonesian furniture lies adjacent to mid-century furniture icons such as leather armchairs from Marcel Breuer. Fujimoto used teak for much of the seating area of the building, creating a visually warm environment. Diverging away color palette of the store, wood panels have been painted with ornate patterns, and dark blue velvet has been used for some seating attached to the wall. Behind the restaurant, a hidden-away music room is accessible only through three side entrances. This space aims to be a hub for vinyl-lovers and audiophiles.
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Photographer Andy Yeung uses drones to capture the density of Hong Kong

Photographer Andy Yeung has been documenting the built environment ever since 2005. Eleven years and several awards later, he's using drones to amplify how we can can see his home city, Hong Kong.

This series of photographs, titled Urban Jungle, highlights the sheer physical mass of Hong Kong's urban environment while showcasing the array of colors used for its residential high-rises.

Prior to this, Yeung had been taking pictures from the opposite perspective. In his Look Up series, dizzying images show towers stretching up into the sky, amplifying their daunting qualities.

Other photos reveal facades in a different light, with repetitive patterns often being the focal point of his work.

Another series BeeHive again showcases the density of Hong Kong but from another different view point.

Yeung's work can also be found via his Facebook page, Instagram, and Google+ profiles.

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Goettsch and Lead 8 win competition for massive Shanghai complex

Designs by Chicago-based Goettsch Partners, along with Hong Kong-based Lead 8, have been chosen for a 2,841,672-square-foot, mixed-use complex in Shanghai. The Financial Street Shanghai Railway Station Mixed-Use Development is spread across two parcels of land just north of the Shanghai Rail Station. The project provides pedestrian routes connecting the project to adjacent sites and public transportation hubs with above and below grade paths and bridges. David Buffonge, cofounder and executive director of Lead 8 explained that “Financial Street Shanghai creates a sustainable urban environment that will concentrate walkable, compact densities around a vibrant mixed-use site near Shanghai Railway Station.” On the eastern parcel of the project, a 161,459-square-foot office building is accompanied by 484,375 square feet of loft apartments, and 161,458 square feet of retail space. The western parcel includes 1,410,072 square feet of office space, another 581,251 square feet of retail,236,806 square feet of loft apartment space, and a 53,819-square-foot cultural center. These programs are spread through five main buildings surrounded by shared public spaces and green retail streets. The office buildings also connect with the outdoors with indoor-outdoor work spaces, specifically tailored to appeal to technology and start-up companies. Both Goettsch and Lead 8 worked on the master plan for the project. Goettsch is leading the design on all the office and residential portions of the western parcel and the exterior design of the eastern parcel, while Lead 8 is handling all of the retail portions. Lead 8 is a young office founded in 2014. Their name, a partial acronym, stands for living environments, architecture and design. With offices in Hong Kong, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, they focus on large-scale, mixed-use, and transit-oriented developments.        
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Winner of 2015 Curry Stone Design Prize Announced

Hong Kong–based nonprofit research and design firm Rural Urban Framework (RUF) won the Curry Stone Design Prize for its work rebuilding villages across China. Joshua Bolchover and John Lin, both professors at the University of Hong Kong, founded RUF in 2006. Their goal is to harness design to “stabilize, reinvigorate, and rebuild” China’s rural populations. Currently, China is experiencing a mass exodus of population from villages as people move to cities in search of better opportunities. In 1980, approximately 80 percent of all Chinese lived in villages. Today, more than half of the population lives in cities. According to research by Tianjin University, China loses approximately 300 villages every single day. Working closely with the locals, RUF has completed a variety of projects to meet each community’s specific needs, including bridges, schools, hospitals, houses, and even a garbage collection center. To date, RUF has worked in 18 villages to combat the effects urban sprawl and is designing and planning entire villages and prototype housing. “The work of RUF is addressing one of the most urgent current geopolitical issues, how to deal with the imbalances created by large mass migrations,” said Emiliano Gandolfi, the Prize Director. “Their work is exemplifying how architecture should establish a dialogue with the community and the environment in order to built structures that respond to their changing needs.” The Curry Stone Design Prize, founded in 2008 to celebrate socially-engaged designers and inspire others to use design, selects winners by consulting social impact experts and humanitarian advocates. RUF will receive a cash prize to aid its mission and projects in China. RUF will participate in a panel at the Chicago Architectural Biennial, led by Prize Director Emiliano Gandolfi on Friday October 2, from 2:30-4pm CST, taking place at the Claudia Cassidy Theater inside the Cultural Center. A short film produced by the Curry Stone Foundation about RUF’s work will also be shown during the panel.
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West 8 unveils plans for massive park in Hong Kong's West Kowloon

The West Kowloon Cultural District Authority (WKCDA) has released concept images for their waterfront park in the West Kowloon Cultural District. Once installed, the park will be a breath of fresh air (both literally and figuratively) for residents in the urban sprawl of Hong Kong, China. The park, designed by West 8, is merely one facet of a larger project to create the West Kowloon Cultural District, which seeks to create a cultural hub in Hong Kong. To establish this cultural atmosphere, the project's planners seek to insert several performance venues and art venues in the park. Upon its completion, the West Kowloon Cultural District will host multiple facilities to provide space for exhibitions and events, a park, and a waterfront path. The buildings will help to facilitate cultural celebrations and large-scale public events while the outdoor space will produce quality “green” space. Three confirmed venues for the park are The Arts Pavilion, Freespace, and The lawn. The Arts Pavilion will be situated on an elevated hill overlooking the Victoria Harbor and will house exhibitions and events that promote the cultural arts. The edifice was designed by VPANG architects and JET Architecture. The Freespace will be comprised of a black box and an outdoor stage, where open-air events and concerts can be held. The black box refers to a space at the center of the park that will seat up to 900 people. Finally, The Lawn will comprise the majority of the park and will be able to hold 10,000 standing visitors, making it ideal for outdoor concerts and festivals.