Online users around the world can now explore 187 artworks from the collections of the Hong Kong Museum of Art and the Hong Kong Heritage Museum through the Google platform starting from this month. These two museums, under the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD), have joined the Google Art Project, which also includes internationally acclaimed museums such as the Tate Britain in London and the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
Speaking at an event held today (April 24) to celebrate the launch of the Google Art Project in Hong Kong, the Director of Leisure and Cultural Services, Mrs Betty Fung, noted that Hong Kong is one of the pilot cities in Asia joining this project.
Mrs Fung said that the LCSD's museums and Google both share the same mission of promoting art and culture. She said she was happy to see that the fabulous collections of the Hong Kong Museum of Art and the Hong Kong Heritage Museum, coupled with the cutting-edge technology of Google, have brought to Hong Kong the groundbreaking Google Art Project.
"Being a well-known visual art museum in the region, the Hong Kong Museum of Art showcases the essence of Hong Kong art, Chinese Art and ink art in particular. The Hong Kong Heritage Museum, on the other hand, gives visitors a kaleidoscopic experience of Hong Kong culture with its wealth of collections covering areas of Hong Kong living heritage and creative culture such as design, pop culture, photography, Cantonese opera and intangible cultural heritage.
"These two museums have brought to the Google Art Project 187 artworks, among which most are works of Hong Kong artists. Thanks to those participating artists and Google, Hong Kong art can be shared with a global audience in close detail through this virtual wall-less museum, anywhere, anytime," Mrs Fung said.
Among the 187 artworks in the Google Art Project, 90 pieces are from the Hong Kong Museum of Art while 97 pieces are from the Hong Kong Heritage Museum.
The Hong Kong Museum of Art selected most of the artworks from its Chinese fine art and modern art collections while the rest came from its historical pictures and Chinese antiquities collections as well as the K.S. Lo Collection of Museum of Tea Ware. They include masterpieces by prominent Chinese and Hong Kong artists like Wu Guanzhong, Ding Yanyong, Lin Fengmian, Huang Bore and Gao Jianfu.
The 97 artworks contributed by the Hong Kong Heritage Museum were selected from its collections of Chinese fine art, photography and poster design. They include important works by master of the Lingnan school of painting and calligraphy Chao Shao-an; works by leading Hong Kong designers like Kan Tai-keung, Alan Chan, Freeman Lau and Stanley Wong; and works by locally renowned photographers such as Chak Wai-leung, Ko Chi-keung, Wong Kan-tai and Wong Wo-bik.
Mrs Fung added that the LCSD has been leveraging on information technology and the Internet to promulgate information on museums and to present cultural and art exhibits.
"Apart from the Google Art Project, we have recently launched the Hong Kong Public Museums Portal, where user-centric information on all local public museums can be obtained at your fingertips.
"The department will also apply multimedia technology in two upcoming mega exhibitions to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region – 'A Lofty Retreat from the Red Dust: The Secret Garden of Emperor Qianlong' to be held by the Hong Kong Museum of Art and 'The Majesty of All Under Heaven: The Eternal Realm of China's First Emperor' to be held by the Hong Kong Museum of History, with the aim of giving the audience a brand new experience of visiting exhibitions."
"We will also launch a mobile app, 'My Culture', soon this year to enable the public to access information on performing arts and museums easily," Mrs Fung said.
Also present at the Google Art Project Launch in Hong Kong held today were the Head of Public Policy and Government Affairs for Google Asia, Mr Ross LaJeunesse; the General Manager of Google Hong Kong, Mr Philip Chan; the Chief Curator of the Hong Kong Museum of Art, Miss Eve Tam; and the Chief Curator of the Hong Kong Heritage Museum, Ms Belinda Wong.
To view the artworks from the Hong Kong Museum of Art and the Hong Kong Heritage Museum involved in the Google Art Project, please visit this website: www.googleartproject.com.
Ends/Tuesday, April 24, 2012