Much has been made of the similarities in the built environments of Hong Kong and Manhattan, both high-density coastal cities whose constrained footprints have encouraged remarkable vertical growth. So appropriately, though for the first time, the Hong Kong Institute of Architects (HKIA) is sending a traveling exhibition to New York City for Archtober: Beyond Territories: Made, Make, Making. Showing at Ideal Glass Studios at 9 West 8th Street from October 10–25, the exhibit explores the past 25 years of urban development in Hong Kong, which is precisely the amount of time that has elapsed since the British handed over control of the region to the People’s Republic of China.
Curated by Professor Bernard V. Lim of Architecture Design and Research Group Ltd.; Roger Wu, a veteran of architectural regeneration projects across Hong Kong, the Chinese Mainland, and the U.K.; and award-winning Hong Kong architect Stanley Siu, Beyond Territories focuses on the advances Hong Kong has made in the areas of urbanism and sustainability. On view is the output of some 25 firms, both from Hong Kong as well as international, whose work has defined the character of the city we see today. Organized into three zones—Made, Make, and Making—the exhibit explores not only the unique characteristics of the city’s high density and diversity, it also showcases the multidisciplinary nature of the contributors’ works, which verge into the realms of art, preservation, and sustainability.
Per the exhibition announcement, the “Made” zone connects the past with the present while documenting the fascinating history and essence of Hong Kong through the aesthetics and powers of modern design. It pays tribute to the well-known architectural masters by tracing their perspectives and appreciating their impact on the city. The “Make” zone unveils the vivid and creative environment of Hong Kong and the hidden stories of districts, showcasing the local culture and the collective projects resulting from cross-professional placemaking. Densely populated, Hong Kong is widely known for its landscape of skyscrapers which encourage exploring the diversified communities and examining the constantly evolving relationship between human beings and space while reflecting on humanity through the city’s architecture. The “Making” zone gathers innovative ideas and voices to transcend the boundaries of architectural frameworks. It concentrates on exploring the possibilities of increasing the city’s resilience to tomorrow’s unpredictable challenges for a better future.
“We are delighted to see these wonderfully dynamic works from our talented architects, designers, and artists, who have successfully showcased the unique beauty of Hong Kong’s past, present, and future,” said Professor Lim in a statement. “We hope to ignite the imagination for a new ecology of creative communities for our environment both locally and globally, and further reveal the contributions of architecture to our daily lives.”
New York is the third stop for this 6-month traveling exhibition, which already showed in Beijing and Huangzhou, and will wrap up in Hong Kong itself. HKIA is also putting on two symposia in New York that will explore the themes of Beyond Territories, which can be attended in-person or via zoom. The first is 4:30–7:30 p.m. on October 11 at the Center for Architecture at 536 Laguardia Place, the second from 10:00 a.m–12:45 p.m. at the Museum of Art and Design at 2 Columbus Circle.