Annual Report 2004 - Leisure and Cultural Services Department Brand Hong Kong - Asia's world city
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  Museums

The six major museums managed by the LCSD are the Hong Kong Museum of Art, the Hong Kong Museum of History, the Hong Kong Museum of Coastal Defence, the Hong Kong Science Museum, the Hong Kong Space Museum and the Hong Kong Heritage Museum. In the interests of study, education and enjoyment, the museums acquire, conserve, research, exhibit and communicate material evidence of people and their environment.

The department also manages the Hong Kong Film Archive and six smaller museums — the Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware, the Lei Cheng Uk Han Tomb Museum, the Law Uk Folk Museum, the Sheung Yiu Folk Museum, the Sam Tung Uk Museum and the Hong Kong Railway Museum.


The history of local rail transportation captures the attention of visitors at the open-air Hong Kong Railway Museum.
The history of local rail transportation captures the attention of visitors at the open-air Hong Kong Railway Museum.


Hong Kong Museum of Art

The Hong Kong Museum of Art aims to stimulate the public's interest in art through the presentation of a wide range of exhibitions and educational programmes. In 2004, the museum staged 20 exhibitions, comprising 12 special and eight permanent exhibitions drawn from local and overseas sources. The works exhibited included avant-garde digital art, Vietnamese paintings, Chinese paintings and calligraphy, antique Chinese treasures and paintings by local artists. Two digital art exhibitions: Topologies of the Instant — Digital Installation of N+N Corsino and Parallel Time — Multi-media Art Exhibition, provided new angles for audiences to understand the development of contemporary art. Vietnam Behind the Lines: Images from the War 1965-75, a joint presentation with the British Museum, displayed the most visible faces of Vietnamese art to local audiences. Liu Guosong — A Universe of His Own and Huang Yongyu at 80: An Art Exhibition, featured distinctive works of the two internationally renowned artists, who opened up new horizons in Chinese ink painting. Legacy of the Lingnan School Master — Homage to Yang Shen-sum and A Walk on the Path of Art — Donation of the Painting and Calligraphy by Lin Jiantong, were presented to celebrate the works of veteran Hong Kong masters.


Contrasts in art forms are dramatically depicted in Topologies of the Instant — Digital Installation of N+N Corsino (above) and Huang Yongyu at 80: An Art Exhibition (below) — two of the 20 exhibitions staged at the Hong Kong Museum of Art.
Contrasts in art forms are dramatically depicted in Topologies of the Instant — Digital Installation of N+N Corsino (above) and Huang Yongyu at 80: An Art Exhibition (below) — two of the 20 exhibitions staged at the Hong Kong Museum of Art.
Contrasts in art forms are dramatically depicted in Topologies of the Instant — Digital Installation of N+N Corsino (above) and Huang Yongyu at 80: An Art Exhibition (below) — two of the 20 exhibitions staged at the Hong Kong Museum of Art.

In collaboration with the Hong Kong Airport Authority, the museum and the Heritage Museum completed the display of art works from their collections at the Hong Kong International Airport. The museum also received a number of significant donations, including 75 ink paintings, calligraphies and research material from the family of the late artist, Lin Jiantong and four ink painting masterpieces from internationally acclaimed Liu Guosong.

The Hong Kong Museum of Art also took an active part in various major art extension programmes in 2004, such as the International Museum Day, the School Culture Day, the International Arts Carnival and the 2nd Asia-Pacific Art Education Conference. This participation was aimed at realising the museum's educational functions and mission to members of the public. The exhibitions, together with various educational and extension programmes, attracted over 270,000 visitors and participants.


Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware

Situated in Hong Kong Park, the Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware is a branch museum of the Hong Kong Museum of Art devoted to the display of Chinese tea ware and the promotion of tea culture.

As part of the museum's mission is to foster the culture of tea drinking and to enhance creativity in the art of pottery tea ware, a competition was organised inviting Hong Kong potters to design ceramic tea drinking vessels. The exhibitions, together with the education and extension activities, attracted more than 206,000 visitors during the year.


Creative works by local potters in a competition featured at the Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware.
Creative works by local potters in a competition featured at the Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware.


Hong Kong Museum of History

In addition to The Hong Kong Story permanent exhibition, the Museum of History jointly presented a number of thematic exhibitions with museums and cultural institutions from the Mainland in 2004. They included Boundless Learning: Foreign-educated Students of Modern China, Treasures of the Chengde Summer Palace, and Hunting and Rituals: Treasures from the Ancient Dian Kingdom of Yunnan. Hong Kong's debut travelling exhibition to the Mainland, Bits of Old Hong Kong, was held at the National Museum of China in Beijing where it attracted 113,200 visitors. The joint ventures broadened the public's cultural horizons and facilitated cultural exchange between Hong Kong and the Mainland. The museum also jointly staged, with a local private collector of Greek coins, History Re-stored: Ancient Greek Coins from the Zhuyuetang Collection to give the public an insight into ancient Greek civilisation. During the year, the museum attracted 658,000 visitors.

The imperial life of the Qing dynasty is introduced in Treasures of the Chengde Summer Palace exhibition.
The imperial life of the Qing dynasty is introduced in Treasures of the Chengde Summer Palace exhibition.

A bronze relic from the Hunting and Rituals: Treasures from the Ancient Dian Kingdom of Yunnan exhibition at the Hong Kong Museum of History.
A bronze relic from the Hunting and Rituals: Treasures from the Ancient Dian Kingdom of Yunnan exhibition at the Hong Kong Museum of History.

In early 2004, the government acquired the Kom Tong Hall in Castle Road, Central, with the aim of converting the historic premises into the proposed Dr Sun Yat-sen Museum. The Museum of History undertook the preparatory work and launched the Collection Campaign Related to Dr Sun Yat-sen and the 1911 Revolution.


The historic Kom Tong Hall in Central is to be turned into a museum to honour the life and times of Dr Sun Yat-sen.
The historic Kom Tong Hall in Central is to be turned into a museum to honour the life and times of Dr Sun Yat-sen.

In an effort to promote public interest in the history and heritage of Hong Kong, the museum continued organising various educational activities and extension services, including guided tours, lectures, seminars, workshops, field trips, video shows, School Culture Day programmes, briefing programmes for in-service teachers, travelling exhibitions and school competitions. The museum and the Education and Manpower Bureau also jointly organised a training course for gifted secondary school students during the summer. This concluded with the reports being uploaded on the museum's website for public viewing.

Other than the Museum of Coastal Defence, the Museum of History also manages two more branch museums — the Lei Cheng Uk Han Tomb Museum in Sham Shui Po and the Law Uk Folk Museum in Chai Wan. These two museums attracted 43,900 and 36,900 visitors respectively.


Hong Kong Museum of Coastal Defence

Converted from the old Lei Yue Mun Fort in Shau Kei Wan, the Museum of Coastal Defence has three main areas — the Reception Building, the Redoubt and the Historical Trail. Its permanent exhibition, 600 Years of Hong Kong's Coastal Defence, depicts the history of Hong Kong's coastal defence from the Ming and Qing dynasties, the British period, the Japanese invasion to the period after Hong Kong's reversion to Chinese sovereignty. Visitors can also explore the military relics in the Redoubt and on the Historical Trail, such as the gun batteries, torpedo station, caponiers and magazines.

Four thematic exhibitions were held during the year — Archery Traditions of Asia, Hong Kong Port Development (jointly presented with the Civil Engineering Department), The East River Column and the Hong Kong-Kowloon Independent Brigade (jointly presented with the Museum of the Peasant Movement Institute) and Serving Hong Kong: The Hong Kong Volunteers (jointly presented with the RHKR The Volunteers Association).


The bow and arrow make a fearsome weapon in the Archery Traditions of Asia exhibition at the Hong Kong Museum of Coastal Defence.
The bow and arrow make a fearsome weapon in the Archery Traditions of Asia exhibition at the Hong Kong Museum of Coastal Defence.

The museum organised a rich variety of educational activities, including guided tours to the galleries and the Historical Trail, lectures on specific topics, family workshops, demonstrations, drill and military music performances and field trips to stimulate interest in the military history and coastal defence of Hong Kong. The exhibitions and educational activities attracted 182,300 visitors during the year.


Hong Kong Science Museum

Throughout the year, the Hong Kong Science Museum presented thematic exhibitions and a wide variety of programmes. Following on the successful Exhibition on China's First Manned Space Mission, a small exhibition titled China's First Manned Space Mission Exhibition II Gifts for Hong Kong was presented from December 2003 to March 2004. It showcased presents from the space mission delegation, including the working and training suit donated by astronaut Yang Liwei and two large satellite images covering Hong Kong and the Pearl River Delta. The exhibition also featured memorabilia produced for the aerospace exhibitions held in the museum in 2000 and 2003. Some 88,600 people attended the event.

Planetary Landscapes: Sculpting the Solar System, produced by the Chabot Space and Science Centre in Oakland, California, was a unique blend of art and science designed to inspire observation, exploration and inquiry. Artist Ned Kahn employed his scientific and technological skills to create 11 interactive kinetic sculptures. The sculptures and photographs invited visitors to investigate natural phenomena and the interplay between chaos and order that continue to shape the planetary landscape of the Solar System. The exhibition, from January to May 2004, attracted 78,300 visitors.


Planetary Landscapes: Sculpting the Solar System at the Hong Kong Science Museum provides a thought-provoking moment for young visitors to the exhibition.
Planetary Landscapes: Sculpting the Solar System at the Hong Kong Science Museum provides a thought-provoking moment for young visitors to the exhibition.

Since the 2001 premiere of the Ancient Chinese Astronomy exhibition at the Hong Kong Science Museum, the exhibition's elegant artefacts have been on display in the Dragon Skies exhibition at the Chabot Space & Science Centre in the US. Shown with these precious historical relics are scale models of the Armillary Sphere, the Ecliptic Armillary Sphere and the Celestial Globe, and computer interactive exhibits produced by the Hong Kong Science Museum. The exhibition is part of the exchange programme between the Science Museum and the Chabot Space & Science Centre that aims to bring quality exhibitions to their audiences through effective sharing of resources. The Planetary Landscapes exhibition was brought to Hong Kong in early 2004 under this programme. The Dragon Skies presentation will continue to tour several museums in the US until April 2007.

The long-term preservation of the human body through the relatively new technique known as plastination was the subject of the Body Parts exhibition from August to December. The technique has made a valuable contribution to the learning and teaching of anatomy. The exhibition featured over 100 plastinated human parts, as well as dye-injection and immersed specimens, to shed light on the elaborate, yet fragile, systems of the body.


The Body Parts exhibition at the Hong Kong Science Museum invites visitors to learn about anatomy and health by viewing human body parts preserved through plastination method.
The Body Parts exhibition at the Hong Kong Science Museum invites visitors to learn about anatomy and health by viewing human body parts preserved through plastination method.

With the aim of promoting the scientific research projects of local universities and disseminating knowledge on new technology, the museum's Science News Corner staged four exhibitions Extremes of the Universe, Photocatalytic Technology for Air and Water Purification, Climate and Sea Level Changes in Hong Kong during the Past 500,000 Years and Virtual Aquarium. The exhibitions, jointly developed by academics and museum professionals, were the result of a successful collaboration between universities and the museum to bring science to the people.

Highlighting the key message of 'learning science is fun', the Summer Science Week in August featured 80 activities including games, a 'science alive' exhibition, guided tours, experiment classes, workshops, family activities, and popular science lectures. In mid-October, the Science Museum, the Hong Kong Central Library, the China Association for Science & Technology and the Beijing-Hong Kong Academic Exchange Centre jointly presented the Distinguished Chinese Scientist Lecture Series. Five renowned scientists from the Mainland and Hong Kong shared their experiences and the stories behind their discoveries.

From December 1 to 4, the museum hosted the 5th Asia Pacific Network of Science and Technology Centres Conference, with the theme Science Centres: Nurturing Creativity. The four-day event was attended by over 100 delegates from more than 20 countries and regions and helped establish and strengthen collaboration between science centres in the Asia Pacific region.

During the year, the museum worked continually with academic institutions and professional bodies on a number of special projects to promote science. Among them were The Fun Science Competition, Robotic Carnival, Symposium on Environmental Issues for Schools, Technology Competition, and the 37th Joint School Science Exhibition.


The Fun Science Competition is one of the special projects promoting science to youngsters.
The Fun Science Competition is one of the special projects promoting science to youngsters.

In 2004, the museum's exhibitions and extension activities attracted more than 850,000 visitors and participants.


Hong Kong Space Museum

2004 was an exciting year for the Hong Kong Space Museum when it opened its doors to some 3,000 people to witness the Transit of Venus on the final day (June 8). It was the first transit of the planet across the Sun's disc since 1882. Visitors were able to view the phenomenon through the museum's solar telescope and other equipment. The museum broadcast this rare astronomical event over the Internet in conjunction with the Hong Kong Observatory.


Amateur astronomers queue at the Hong Kong Space Museum to witness the rare Transit of Venus in June 2004.
Amateur astronomers queue at the Hong Kong Space Museum to witness the rare Transit of Venus in June 2004.

In May, a 'sidewalk astronomy' session, organised together with astronomical societies, was held on the podium of the Museum of Art to allow the public to view the passage of the recently discovered Comet NEAT. About 40 telescopes were set up to view the comet by some 350 passers-by.

In appreciation of a donation of $20 million to the government by Dr Stanley Ho in August, the Hong Kong Space Museum's Space Theatre has been named the Stanley Ho Space Theatre for the next 15 years. The donation was made under the Home Affairs Bureau's Facility and Programme Donations Scheme for sponsoring the arts and culture, recreation and sports and community building. The official naming ceremony took place on December 28.


Dr Stanley Ho presents a cheque for $20 million to Secretary for Home Affairs, Dr Patrick Ho during the official naming of the Stanley Ho Space Theatre.
Dr Stanley Ho presents a cheque for $20 million to Secretary for Home Affairs, Dr Patrick Ho during the official naming of the Stanley Ho Space Theatre.

During the year, the museum published the Astrocalendar 2005. It launched two Sky Shows, four Omnimax films and five School Shows which attracted some 380,000 viewers. The museum also organised 190 extension activities that had over 27,300 participants. Eight temporary special exhibitions, together with the permanent exhibits in the Hall of Astronomy and Hall of Space Science, attracted more than 380,500 visitors.


Hong Kong Heritage Museum

The Hong Kong Heritage Museum fosters the cultural identity of the local community and promotes Hong Kong's heritage to overseas visitors. It features a wide variety of programmes on local history, arts and culture.

Design was the theme of the museum's programmes in 2004-05. A series of exhibitions and educational activities was organised in 2004, including Banknotes that Tell a Story, which featured the transformation in the design of Hong Kong's banknotes over the years; Flip: Chinese Contemporary Book Design, showcased some 500 celebrated contemporary publications from the Mainland, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan; Visual Dynamic: Hong Kong International Poster Triennial, displayed over 450 outstanding posters from 29 different countries and regions; and building hong kong redwhiteblue, provided a visual platform showing Hong Kong's spirit by using the red-white-blue fabric.


Perceptions of the Hong Kong spirit through the eyes of local creative talent using red, white and blue fabric is portrayed in building hong kong — redwhiteblue.
Perceptions of the Hong Kong spirit through the eyes of local creative talent using red, white and blue fabric is portrayed in building hong kong — redwhiteblue.

Other major exhibitions staged during the year included Let's Drink to Our Pleasure: Pu'er Tea and Teaware, Fine Dining: Ancient Chinese Culinary Ware, Hong Kong Foodscape: TextImageInstallation, Four Bronze Animal Heads from Yuanmingyuan and Memories of Home: 50 Years of Public Housing in Hong Kong.


Memories of Home: 50 Years of Public Housing in Hong Kong brings back interesting images of the government's early efforts to re-house hundreds of thousands of people.
Memories of Home: 50 Years of Public Housing in Hong Kong brings back interesting images of the government's early efforts to re-house hundreds of thousands of people.

Famous Cantonese opera artist, Ng Kwan Lai, who donated 3,000 Cantonese opera artefacts to the Heritage Museum, was the subject of a special exhibition in December. A Synthesis of Lyrical Excellence and Martial Agility The Stage Art of Ng Kwan Lai was organised to review Ms Ng's career and celebrate her distinguished artistic achievements in Cantonese opera. The exhibition featured over 170 valuable items selected from her donation.

The museum's educational and extension services involved 1,257 activities, including seminars, lectures, field trips, performances, demonstrations, art camps, workshops and competitions. The MuseKids scheme, which was launched in 2003 to provide children from kindergarten level to Primary 6 with opportunities to explore the history, art and culture of Hong Kong, has expanded steadily. By the end of the year, 6,100 children had become members.


The MuseKids Scheme gives children an opportunity to learn more about the history, art and culture of Hong Kong.
The MuseKids Scheme gives children an opportunity to learn more about the history, art and culture of Hong Kong.

The exhibition programmes, together with the educational and extension activities, attracted more than 632,000 visitors and participants in 2004.

The Heritage Museum manages three branch museums, the Sam Tung Uk Museum in Tsuen Wan, the Hong Kong Railway Museum in Tai Po Market and the Sheung Yiu Folk Museum in Sai Kung. Together they attracted almost 700,000 visitors during the year.


Hong Kong Film Archive

The Hong Kong Film Archive's major functions are to acquire, preserve, catalogue and document Hong Kong films and related material. With a gross floor area of 7,200 square metres, its major facilities include a cinema, an exhibition hall, a resource centre and a number of temperature-controlled collection stores. The archive has already catalogued nearly 632,000 items, mainly from donations and deposits.

In 2004, nine exhibitions, including Novel Drama Melodrama; Time and Tide Changes in Hong Kong Cinema of the 70s; Fame Flame Frame Jupiter Wong Foto exhibition; and Tricky Wonderland, were organised; and more than 430 screenings were held at the Hong Kong Film Archive. Complementing the exhibitions and screening activities, the archive also collaborated with local educational and cultural institutions in the organisation of seminars and workshops for film students, researchers and the public. As part of its research into Hong Kong cinema, the Film Archive conducted oral history interviews with film veterans, and published a number of film-related publications. It also participated in programmes and exchanges with other local and overseas film organisations and archives in fostering the public's appreciation of cinematic arts. The archive's resource centre, equipped with computers, independent video booths and a rich collection of film-related reading material, was well patronised by the public.


The Hong Kong Film Archive organises nine exhibitions, including Novel • Drama • Melodrama (above) and Fame Flame Frame — Jupiter Wong Foto exhibition (below), to promote an appreciation of cinematic arts.
The Hong Kong Film Archive organises nine exhibitions, including Novel • Drama • Melodrama (above) and Fame Flame Frame — Jupiter Wong Foto exhibition (below), to promote an appreciation of cinematic arts.
The Hong Kong Film Archive organises nine exhibitions, including Novel • Drama • Melodrama (above) and Fame Flame Frame — Jupiter Wong Foto exhibition (below), to promote an appreciation of cinematic arts.

In 2004, the archive attracted 203,000 visitors.


Art Promotion Office

The Art Promotion Office organises wide-ranging activities to highlight local visual arts by focusing on public and community projects. The office places great importance on undertaking projects with different partners to further enhance art appreciation and participation among the public.

The 2003/04 Public Art Scheme was launched in late 2003 with two artwork proposals being selected that will be installed in the new Ma On Shan Public Library and the piazza of the Hong Kong Cultural Centre. The New Face of Heritage Installation of Public Artworks at Yat Tung Estate, Tung Chung Stage II, was jointly organised with the Housing Department. Ten artwork proposals were selected and will be installed in the estate in mid-2005. Together with the 16 artworks of Stage I, they will form an estate 'Artwalk'. The office also jointly organised the Camera Yuen Long: Art-in-Subways project with the Highways Department. Seventy-two photos by local photographers were selected through an open competition. The photographs will be further produced into pictorial tiles on the walls of six subways in Yuen Long to feature the district's highlights and enhance the public's interest in art.


Judges making the difficult decision in selecting outstanding entries in the photo competition for the Camera Yuen Long: Art-in-Subways project.
Judges making the difficult decision in selecting outstanding entries in the photo competition for the Camera Yuen Long: Art-in-Subways project.

The office is also responsible for the management of the Hong Kong Visual Arts Centre. Its facilities, including art studios and an exhibition hall, can be hired by the public at subsidised rates. The centre emphasises training in the visual arts. A third Art Specialist course lasting nine months and covering five disciplines — ceramics, printmaking, painting, sculpture and ink painting — was specially designed for general art lovers who wished to pursue structured professional art training. An exhibition featuring the works of the 53 graduates from the course will be held in early 2005. A prelude to the Olympics 2004: Exhibition of Sport and Art Contest was held during the summer to celebrate the 28th Olympic Games in Athens.

 
 
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2005© Important notices Last revision date: 24/11/11