Sunday, November 21, 2021

M+ celebrates its opening ahead of its public launch

M+ celebrates its opening ahead of its public launch

M+ celebrates its opening ahead of its public launch

M+, Asia’s first global museum of contemporary visual culture in the West Kowloon Cultural District of Hong Kong, opens to the public on Friday, 12 November 2021 with three weekends of celebratory programmes for everyone to enjoy. The West Kowloon Cultural District Authority (WKCDA) and M+ today (11 November) invited guests and media to inaugurate this monumental addition to Hong Kong and Asia’s cultural landscape. 

The media preview of M+ was followed by a ribbon-cutting ceremony, officiated by Carrie Lam, Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR); Wang Songmiao, Secretary-General of the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the HKSAR; Henry Tang, Chairman of the Board of the WKCDA; John Lee Ka-chiu, Chief Secretary for Administration of the HKSAR; Victor Lo, Chairman of the M+ Board; Ronald Arculli, Vice Chairman of the Board of the WKCDA; Caspar Tsui, Secretary for Home Affairs of the HKSAR Government; Betty Fung, Chief Executive Officer of WKCDA; and Suhanya Raffel, Museum Director, M+. Other guests attending the event included members of the WKCDA Board, the M+ Board, the Board of the Hong Kong Palace Museum, committees and panels of the WKCDA, government officials, and other stakeholders. 

Mrs Carrie Lam, Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region said, “M+ is the much-anticipated flagship project for the local and international visual arts sector. The museum’s scale is second to none in Asia. It houses and displays visual culture collections from Hong Kong, Mainland China, Asia and other regions. Looking ahead, we have the grand opening of the Hong Kong Palace Museum scheduled for mid-2022, so along with the newly renovated Hong Kong Museum of Art, Victoria Harbour will soon be home to three spectacular world-class museum facilities, paving the way for Hong Kong to become a global landmark for visual art and culture.” 

Henry Tang said, ‘The opening of M+ completes a major milestone in the development of West Kowloon, making a vital contribution to the future of Hong Kong as one of the world’s leading art hubs, and a world-class tourism destination for local, regional, and international visitors. Together with other arts and cultural facilities in the West Kowloon Cultural District, M+ will offer visitors an arts and cultural journey with a holistic experience, creating multiple synergies with regional and international cultural partners that will help revitalise Hong Kong’s tourism industry in a post-pandemic world.’ 

Victor Lo said, ‘For many years, M+ has nurtured the careers of artists from Hong Kong and Mainland China through the acquisition of works and by supporting emerging talent through our programme of awards, commissions and displays. We are delighted to open the doors of M+, Asia’s first global museum of contemporary visual culture, so that we can build on our role to enrich the lives of this region’s artists, makers, practitioners, and professionals while fostering cultural exchange between Hong Kong and the world.’ 

Suhanya Raffel said, ‘Our vision for M+ is to build a community of learning that encourages empathy, respect, multiple perspectives, and creativity through visual culture for all our audiences to benefit from. By offering an open and welcoming platform with creative learning experiences, M+ is dedicated to creating an active culture that connects people, objects and spaces. It is our hope that the museum inspires the city’s residents and international visitors alike.’ The opening displays feature M+’s pre-eminent collections of visual art, design and architecture, and moving image from Hong Kong, Greater China, Asia, and beyond. The presentations showcase approximately 1,500 works across thirty-three galleries and other spaces in the museum. 

To inaugurate the new galleries, six exhibitions enable visitors to explore the overarching multidisciplinary and interregional themes and narratives at the heart of the collections M+ has built since 2012: Hong Kong: Here and Beyond (G, Main Hall Gallery) – divided into four chapters, Here, Identities, Places and Beyond, the exhibition captures the city’s transformation and unique visual culture from the 1960s to the present; M+ Sigg Collection: From Revolution to Globalisation (level 2, Sigg Galleries) – a chronological survey of the development of contemporary Chinese art from the 1970s through the 2000s drawn from the M+ Sigg Collection; Things, Spaces, Interactions (level 2, East Galleries) – a thematic and chronological exploration of international design and architecture over the last seventy years and their relevance to our lives today; Individuals, Networks, Expressions (level 2, South Galleries) – a narrative of post-war international visual art told from the perspective of Asia; Antony Gormley: Asian Field (level 2, West Gallery) – an expansive installation of tens of thousands of clay figurines created by the world-renowned British sculptor together with 300 villagers from a Guangdong village in five days in 2003, reflecting the country’s vast territory and population; and The Dream of the Museum (level 2, Courtyard Galleries) – a global constellation of conceptual art practices at the heart of M+’s unique Asian context.

Visitors will encounter additional new commissions upon entering the Main Hall by Taiwan’s leading calligraphy artist Tong Yang-Tze, and the Donor Wall Texture, a digital composition of text displayed on an LED screen by acclaimed Japan’s designer Nakamura Yugo. In the Found Space, M+’s subterranean display space for large-scale multidisciplinary works, the first in a dynamic series of installations will present the work of artists Chen Zhen and Danh Vo. 

A new M+ Commission by Haegue Yang features long braids of metal bells that hang from ceilings of different heights. Video highlights from the collection and a ten-part animation How to Build a Museum by Vincent Broquaire are featured on the M+ Facade. Designed by a global team of the world-renowned architecture practice Herzog & de Meuron in partnership with TFP Farrells and Arup, the 65,000-square-metre M+ building is among Hong Kong’s most iconic landmarks, both monumental in its architectural form and radically open in its position in the urban landscape. 

Located on the Victoria Harbour waterfront, the architecture consists of a striking terracotta tile-clad tower, featuring a dynamic LED media system on the south facade for the display of M+ content, defining the museum’s place within the urban landscape and contributing to the city’s vibrant night-time environment. To celebrate the opening of the museum, M+ will stage opening programmes for the public across three Fridays and weekends following the launch, featuring special tours, making workshops, sensory experiences, live performances, screenings, and digital engagement. The Grand Stair will screen the documentary Building M+, and host M+ Live Art x Hong Kong Ballet - Five Tiny Dances. A dedicated learning programme will engage families and audiences from different backgrounds and community groups in Hong Kong with the full breadth of its offer as a museum of visual culture. Visitors can explore M+’s collection of moving image works in the Mediatheque, selecting artists’ films and videos to watch, including works related to multimedia artist Nam June Paik. The M+ Cinema, which will be open early next year, is a unique addition to Hong Kong’s art house landscape, comprising a suite of three cinema houses of different capacities. All visitors will enjoy free admission to M+ exhibitions, except for special exhibitions and events, in the first twelve months after the opening date. Special exhibitions and events as well as cinema screenings may require separate paid tickets. For details on M+’s registration arrangements, opening hours and opening programmes, please visit the M+ website.

M+ would like to acknowledge the sponsors of its inaugural exhibitions, including Presenting Sponsors J.P. Morgan and Principal Financial Group, Major Sponsor Bloomberg Philanthropies, as well as Supporting Sponsors Chartwell Capital Limited and Hublot. Support for the museum’s learning and community programmes have been provided by The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation and Sino Group. M+ also acknowledges the General Sponsor of the museum opening, Goldman Sachs, as well as De Ying Foundation which supports a curatorial position. The public is welcome to join M+ Membership and support the development of museum through sponsorship, donations, and patronage. For members and patrons, the M+ Lounge, occupying level 11 of the M+ tower, is not only a comfortable space reserved exclusively to dine, drink and relax, but also a showcase of the Living Collection of Hong Kong-based artist and architect William Lim and his wife Lavina Lim.

For details, please visit the M+ website. M+ members will enjoy greater access to the museum and exclusive privileges. ### Notes to Editors Online presence Website https://mplus.org.hk/ Facebook M+, West Kowloon Cultural District Instagram @mplusmuseum Twitter @mplusmuseum YouTube M Plus WeChat MPlus 博物馆

Chinaallover.com