Intangible Cultural Heritage Office
The People's Republic of China ratified the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage (the Convention) adopted by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization in 2004. The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region agreed that the Convention should apply to Hong Kong.
With the enforcement of the Convention in April 2006, an Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) Unit was set up in the same year under the establishment of the Hong Kong Heritage Museum to undertake necessary work in compliance with the Convention. In May 2015, the Leisure and Cultural Services Department upgraded ICH Unit to the ICH Office.
Vision, Mission and Values
Dedicated to identifying, documenting, researching, preserving, promoting and transmitting ICH, as well as encouraging public participation to jointly promote the transmission and innovation of ICH.
- To record, document and research Hong Kong's ICH, identify and designate Hong Kong's ICH items to strengthen the safeguarding of ICH.
- To provide diverse programmes to showcase and promote Hong Kong's ICH to enhance the public's understanding and awareness of ICH.
- To promote community engagement and regional cooperation, and support the transmission of ICH to jointly safeguard and promote Hong Kong's ICH.
- Transmission and Innovation
- Cohesion and Collaboration
- Community Connections
Logo of the ICH Office
Designed by Stanley Siu, guest curator of the "Lost and Sound — Hong Kong Intangible Cultural Heritage" Exhibition Series and a young architect who has received a number of awards, the logo originates from the Chinese character "Fei" (非), which means "non-" or "not", as in the prefix "in-" in the word "intangible", and represents an abstract expression of the elements of humankind, community, inheritance and time. The character is connected by one stroke, which not only links the components on the left and right but also connects time and space. It creates coherence, demonstrating the harmony and balance between the past and the present, and explores the ways in which age-old traditions adapt to change, thus remaining alive over the generations.
Communities, groups and individuals are the essence of the practice and inheritance of ICH. Time flies and moments are fleeting. ICH assets and living traditions have evolved over time, constantly renewing themselves. The efforts of the bearers and masters of ICH in handing the baton down to the next generation have contributed to the continuity of the chain of transmission. Traditional cultural customs, including oral traditions, performing arts, rituals and festive events, as well as traditional craftsmanship, have been passed down through the generations and continue to evolve, becoming the intangible treasures of Hong Kong.
The logo of the ICH Office is interpreted in different patterns, representing the five domains of ICH stated in the Convention:
Oral Traditions and Expressions
Social Practices, Rituals and Festive Events
Knowledge and Practices Concerning Nature and the Universe