The West Kowloon Cultural District Authority (WKCDA) is delighted to announce today a ground breaking arrangement in collaboration with the Palace Museum to launch a new museum in the West Kowloon Cultural District with long term loans from the Museum.  Under this special arrangement, the Hong Kong Palace Museum (HKPM) will be established by the WKCDA to be a new focal point of the District for displaying the visual culture of 5,000 years of historical Chinese art from the imperial courts.

Situated in the very heart of Beijing, the Palace Museum is a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its vast holding of over 1.8 million artefacts including paintings, ceramics, calligraphy, and antiquities belonging to the imperial collections.  The Palace Museum houses many nationally protected valuable cultural objects, but only a small fraction of this extraordinary collection is on display to the public at any given time given the space constraint.

The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSARG) considered the West Kowloon Cultural District the ideal location for establishing this unprecedented museum to showcase the collections of the Palace Museum.  As one of the world’s most ambitious cultural and infrastructure projects, the West Kowloon Cultural District offers a unique location for the presentation of treasures from the Palace Museum.  The HKPM will display work from the Palace Museum collection on a long-term basis.

The Memorandum of Understanding of Cooperation for the HKPM project was signed by the Board Chairman of the WKCDA, Mrs Carrie Lam, and the Director of the Palace Museum, Dr Shan Jixiang, in Beijing today (23 December).

At the press conference held after the ceremony, Mrs Lam said, “The HKPM is not only in line with the vision of the West Kowloon Cultural District to be the cultural hub of Hong Kong, but is also highly complementary to its core arts and cultural facilities under construction or planning, notably M+, as a rich tapestry of Chinese and western art in both traditional and modern genres would be showcased by the two museums.”

Expected to be opened in 2022, the HKPM will further strengthen Hong Kong’s position as the cultural metropolis. In addition, it will provide a valuable opportunity for collaboration with local institutions in research and education.  Through the establishment of these museums, M+ and HKPM will provide a broader scope to nurture the careers of emerging museum professionals across curatorial, educational and other professional areas of museum management in Hong Kong. 

The new HKPM will be a purpose-built museum in the West Kowloon Cultural District. It will provide permanent galleries devoted to showing the Palace Museum collections that highlight imperial life and culture as well as educational and ancillary facilities. The capital cost of the HKPM will be fully funded by a generous donation of HK$3.5 billion from the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust.

The HKPM will be managed by a wholly-owned subsidiary of the WKCDA with its own governance structure, Board and its own team of staff including curatorial, conservation, registration, exhibition, management and learning teams of specialists.

The HKPM will occupy a prime location on Hong Kong’s harbourfront within easy reach by public transportation, and will be adjacent to a proposed exhibition hub comprising an exhibition centre, hotels and offices.

The Board of the WKCDA has endorsed the appointment of Rocco Yim of Rocco Design Architects Limited as the architect to carry out the design of the HKPM.  Mr Yim has very good understanding of museums and Chinese arts, as well as the vision of the West Kowloon Cultural District.  He has received numerous awards for his works locally and internationally, including the outstanding designs of the Yunnan Provincial Museum and Guangdong Museum in the Mainland.

“This is an unprecedented opportunity which benefits Hong Kong in terms of cultural exchanges. We believe the addition of the Hong Kong Palace Museum will complement the contemporary collection at the M+ and will add to the District’s appeal and attraction. Both these museum institutions, through their proximity to one another with contrasting exhibitions, will provide programmes that access new audience through the dedicated development of innovative learning and digital programmes,” said Duncan Pescod, Chief Executive Officer of WKCDA.

Remarks

About West Kowloon Cultural District
Located on Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour, the West Kowloon Cultural District is one of the largest cultural projects in the world. Its vision is to create a vibrant new cultural quarter for Hong Kong. With a complex of theatres, performance spaces, and M+, the West Kowloon Cultural District will produce and host world-class exhibitions, performances, and cultural events, as well as provide 23 hectares of public open space, including a two kilometre waterfront promenade.

About M+


Hong Kong’s museum for visual culture – encompassing twentieth and twenty-first century art, design and architecture, and moving image from Hong Kong, China, Asia, and beyond – M+ will be one of the largest museums of 20th and 21st century visual culture in the world. Located adjacent to the future waterfront park of the West Kowloon Cultural District, the museum building, designed by Herzog & de Meuron, is scheduled to open in 2019.