Hong Kong’s highly anticipated M+ will open its doors on November 12; from Uli Sigg’s colossal collection to its Instagram-friendly cafe, here’s what to expect at the West Kowloon museum
M+ opens on November 12 and rivals London’s Tate Modern and Paris’ Centre Pompidou. Comparable with the large scale of New York’s MoMA, the M+ building houses a whopping 65,000 square metres of space with six thematic exhibitions, a Mediatheque that displays moving images and more to await. Here are five things to look out for among the plethora of attractions
Domestic Transformer, Gary Chang
Exploring the prevalent issue of crowded living conditions in Hong Kong, architect Gary Chang modelled his real-life stainless steel home, titled Domestic Transformer with ingenious structural solutions that optimise living in tiny flats.
In a previous interview, Chang defined the space as one that “transforms from one scene to the other”, which defies the domestic norm of moving from one room to another to perform different tasks. With movable walls, viewers get an immersive experience in Chang’s innovative home with multifunctional furniture.
Henry Steiner’s works
Dubbed the “Father of Hong Kong graphical design”, Austrian graphic designer Henry Steiner’s corporate branding designs etched an imprint on the expression of identity through branded design in Hong Kong. From HSBC’s logo to the city’s banknotes, his pioneering works, which combined Eastern elements with Western designs, continue to influence the city today.
Featured in the Hong Kong: Here and Beyond exhibition is Steiner’s 1982 project—his creations for the I Club, a private members’ club located at the Bank of America tower in Central, founded by Alfred Siu. From matchboxes, membership cards to brochures, invitations and lounge menus, Steiner shaped I Club’s visual identity and captured the city’s character in the 1980s.
M+ Sigg Collection: From Revolution to Globalisation
Swiss businessman and diplomat Uli Sigg is one of the world’s most prolific contemporary Chinese art collectors; his 1,500-piece collection found a permanent home at M+ and has helped put the museum on the international art map.
Featuring artworks by more than 350 Chinese artists, including Bloodlines and Family by Zhang Xiaogang and The Second State by Geng Jianyi, the M+ Sigg Collection tells the evolution of contemporary Chinese art from the 1970s early to 2012, from revolution to globalisation. In the conversations that artists sought to engage with international audiences, socio-economical changes are reflected along with experimentation of revolutionary ideas and unconventional practices that are tradition-defying.
Not only is M+ a treat for the eyes, but it also offers a wide range of indulgences for your palate. Other than restaurants lining the promenade of the West Kowloon Cultural District, Hong Kong-based lifestyle brand Curator brings its experimental menu to M+.
The Curator Creative Café serves an abundant assortment of food and beverage from a diverse selection of coffee such as the Artsy Print Coffee (for the gram, of course), the Rose Strawberry Cappucino to a fusion of Asian delectable snacks including the Glutinous Chicken with Mushroom and Black truffle sauce, Pork Siu Mai with Thai Pomelo Salad and Sakayaki Fish Balls.
The Other Shop
If you’re a lover of museum souvenirs, The Other Shop offers artsy merchandise that is meticulously crafted to enrich visitors’ daily lives. From apparel such as scarves and fishnet bags, keepsakes like art-printed postcards, and insightful contemporary art reads to elegant vases and artisans alike, M+ visitors get to bring home a symbol of Hong Kong visual culture.