1954 © Jackson Wong Estate. Wong’s drawing during his time as a HKU student
M+, a museum of visual culture in the West Kowloon Cultural District, has been building its collection since 2012. More than 6,000 modern and contemporary art and design works can be viewed in its digital gallery.
Historically important HKU alumni and professors, who shaped Hong Kong’s cityscape, are represented in M+’s archives.
Shirley Surya, curator for design and architecture at M+, said that “the impact of HKU’s architecture school is evident in the contributions its graduates made in designing key architectural and infrastructural projects that have shaped Hong Kong’s built environment today.”
She added the “most historically significant” architects were those who trained in the founding years of HKU Architecture in the 1950s.
Classmates Jackson Wong 王澤生 (BArch 1955) and Ng Chun Man 伍振民 (BArch 1955) were the first HKU graduates to establish a major architecture firm in the city. Their company, Wong & Ng Associates, later became Wong & Ouyang.
One of the earliest architecture-related pieces in M+’s collection is Wong’s student sketch of a “Chinese professor’s courtyard house” in 1954. The archives also include designs for Adventist Hospital, Hutchison House and the iconic Lippo Centre towers in Admiralty.
The Wong & Ouyang portion of the collection includes one of the few works by a female HKU Architecture alumna, Nora Leung 梁幗平 (BA(ArchStud) 1978; BArch 1980). ▼
Andrew Lee 李景勳 (BArch 1956), who was a star athlete during his youth at HKU, designed the HKU Kadoorie Agricultural Research Centre. He was named an HKU Honorary University Fellow in 2000. Andrew Lee King Fung & Associates Architects is represented by 31 pieces in the M+ collection, including models, posters, drawings, photographs, books, periodicals and archival documents. They reflect urban development in the 1970s and 1980s, from housing blocks in Sha Tin to the Jing An Hilton Shanghai. ▼
© Andrew Lee King Fun & Associates Architects Limited, Rendering,
interior atrium perspective, Jing An Hilton Hotel (1984), Shanghai, China
Simon Kwan, Hong Kong Government Public Works Department, Photograph, perspective drawing, Hong Kong Coliseum (1972–1983)
Simon Kwan 關善明 (BArch 1967; PhD 1989) shaped the city’s early performance venues with designs for the Hong Kong Academy for the Performing Arts and the Hong Kong Coliseum – both of which are featured in the M+ collection. Dr Kwan was named an HKU Honorary University Fellow in 1999. ▼
Interior fountain of Mei Foo Sun Chuen. © Wong Tung & Partners; M+, Hong Kong. Gift of Wong Tung & Partners Limited, 2013
Edward Ho 何承天 (BArch 1963) was a partner at Wong Tung & Partners, a firm whose footprint can be seen in mass housing estates and public open spaces across Hong Kong. Ho has served as an Executive Council member, board member of the MTR Corporation and president of the Hong Kong Institute of Architects The M+ Archives includes 46 works by Wong Tung & Partners, including residences that still house tens of thousands of Hong Kongers, from Tai Koo Shing in Island East to Mei Foo Sun Cheun in Kowloon. There are also designs for Hong Kong Park and the Sheraton Hotel in Tsim Sha Tsui. ▼
Eric Lye 黎錦超, (1934 to 2003) a native of Malaysia and pioneer of Hong Kong architecture, served HKU from 1976 until his death in 2003. He was a chair professor and dean at the Faculty of Architecture, as well as an instrumental figure in shaping the architecture programme at HKU, HKU SPACE and the mainland. Ten of Prof Lye’s works are included in the M+ Collection.
Surya, the curator, also cited the importance of works by Rocco Yim 嚴迅奇 (BA(ArchStud) 1974; BArch 1976; HonDSocSc 2013) and
Gary Chang 張智強 (BA(ArchStud) 1985; BArch 1987). “These two talents contributed to a new building and housing typology rooted in their keen observations of Hong Kong’s unique traits of dynamic multi-use of space and urban dynamism, density, and inter-connectivity,” she said. ▼
Founder of the EDGE Design Institute, Gary Chang 張智強 is known for his commitment to innovative exploration of modernism with tradition, nature with metropolitan and art with adaptability. He is known for his design, The Domestic Transformer, which can turn into “24 rooms” within a limited space of 32 sq.m. and it is now featured in the M+ collection.
Currently showing in the M+ Main Hall Gallery are Rocco Yim, Edward Ho and Nora Leung. Other featured works by HKU Architecture alumni include the ATL Container Freight Station in Kwai Chung by Dennis Lau 劉榮廣 (BArch 1970) and the Verbena Heights public housing estate by Anthony Ng 吳享洪 (BA (ArchStud) 1970; BArch 1972). ▼
Dennis Lau & Ng Chun Man Architects & Engineers (HK) Limited, first floor plan, ATL Container Freight Station (now ATL Logistics Centre) 1989 – 1994
Dennis Lau 劉榮廣 (BArch 1970) , Chairman and Managing Director of DLN Architects limited (DLN). DLN is known for complex, large-scale buildings and urban developments in the commercially demanding and hyper-dense context of Hong Kong, including the ATL Container Freight Station (now ATL Logistics Centre) (1979–1994), whose design is currently on display in M+.
Projects by Dennis Lau are examples of distinctive experiments in 1970s Hong Kong architecture. These include the Chung Chi Hall Student Centre at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, a development of private houses at Repulse Bay, and a development of houses at Tai Tam Crescent, Stanley. ▼
Anthony Ng Architects, Schematic design model, Verbena Heights (1992–1997), Hong Kong 1992
Anthony Ng 吳享洪 (BA(ArchStud) 1970, BArch 1972), whose project, the Verbena Height, is on show now, is the first environmentally-responsible housing estate in Hong Kong that was designed with solar mapping and wind tunnel modelling. The height and facade of the buildings were carefully designed to increase wind flow and to block direct sunlight. ■
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