M+ Pavilion Courtesy of West Kowloon Cultural District Authority and M+, Hong Kong
HONG KONG.- The West Kowloon Cultural District Authority yesterday celebrated the completion of M+ Pavilion, the first permanent venue for exhibitions and arts events in the West Kowloon Cultural District, marking a significant milestone in the development of the art hub.
At the dedication ceremony, Mrs Carrie Lam, Chairman of the WKCDA Board, was joined by Mr Duncan Pescod, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of WKCDA; Ms Suhanya Raffel, Executive Director of M+ designate; Mr Doryun Chong, Deputy Director, Chief Curator and Acting Director of M+, and Mr Vincent Pang, Managing Director of VPANG Architects Ltd., to cut the ribbon to commemorate this historic moment.
Commending the project team for completing the facility on time and within budget, Mrs Lam said, “The M+ Pavilion is the first permanent facility to open in the West Kowloon Cultural District (WKCD) since the Development Plan was approved in January 2013. Although this facility is modest in scale, its completion marks a significant milestone in the development of this major cultural undertaking in Hong Kong. The opening of the M+ Pavillion will soon be followed by the opening of the Xiqu Centre in 2018, the Art Park including the Freespace with a black box theatre and an outdoor stage from 2018 in stages, as well as the M+ Building in 2019. The Lyric Theatre Complex has also entered detailed design stage and is expected to complete in 2020 and open in 2021. We will continue to develop the WKCD into a world-class art and cultural hub where everyone may relax, be inspired and enjoy an extraordinary cultural experience.”
“WKCD is a long-term strategic investment by the Hong Kong SAR Government to promote the development of art and creative industries, meet the growing cultural needs of the public, attract and nurture artistic talents, and strengthen Hong Kong’s position as an international art and cultural metropolis. Such a vision and commitment is something that should make us proud,” added Mrs Lam.
Mr Pescod expressed his gratitude for the concerted efforts by various parties – in particular members of the M+ board, WKCDA and M+ staff, architects, designers, and contractors, in realising the M+ Pavilion. “The dedication of M+ Pavilion is a small yet important step. This is a clear statement that we are going to deliver this ambitious project for the people of Hong Kong. Surrounded as it is by the construction of the Art Park, the M+ building and the excavation works for the Lyric Theatre Complex basement, it is clear for everyone to see that WKCD project as a whole is firmly underway.” said Mr Pescod.
The M+ Pavilion is designed by a team of three Hong Kong-born, young and energetic architects: Vincent Pang from VPANG architects ltd, Tynnon Chow from JET Architecture Inc and Lisa Cheung. After they won the first prize in the international design competition for the Pavilion, they have been appointed to work with the WKCDA to design and bring to fruition the Pavilion which will provide a flexible space to stage small-scale exhibitions and events.
Located within the Art Park amid public space, the M+ Pavilion is designed to offer a respite from hectic city life with a smart simplistic approach that allows it to blend into its environment. Mirrored external walls reflect the surrounding expanses of greenery and immerse the building in the Art Park setting. To further this experience, the Pavilion’s main exhibition space is elevated, allowing it to float above the foliage, creating the opportunity for artwork to be appreciated against a backdrop of the unparalleled Hong Kong Island skyline with spectacular views of Victoria Harbour. Inside, the gallery space feature polished concrete floors and white walls – a flexible backdrop for multidisciplinary art exhibitions and performances.
Apart from building hardware, M+ has already organised an array of exhibitions and public programmes including the well-received “Mobile M+: Live Art”, “M+ Sigg Collection Exhibition” and “M+ Rover”, to name just a few. M+ is also fully committed to teaching and nurturing the younger generation through docent volunteer programmes and regular internship schemes.
In the run-up to the opening of M+ in 2019, the Pavilion will host a series of thematic exhibitions displaying selections from the M+ Collection encompassing the three main areas of visual art, design and architecture, and moving image for public viewing. The inaugural exhibition in September will be Tsang Kin-Wah: Nothing, a new commission by the Hong Kong artist ollowing his critically acclaimed exhibition The Infinite Nothing, which represented Hong Kong at the 56th Venice Biennale in 2015. Other thematic exhibitions that follow will highlight M+’s growing design collection and present a project on Hong Kong popular culture.
After the opening of the main M+ building where the museum will be housed, the Pavilion will be available for Hong Kong’s vibrant creative communities ― artists, designers, architects, and other organisations to stage exhibitions and events.