Guided Viewing: Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Auctions

2023 marks Sotheby’s 50th anniversary in Asia, a milestone for which Sotheby’s will launch a year-long campaign of extraordinary exhibitions, events, and auctions in Hong Kong and beyond. Headlining the Contemporary auctions are a masterwork by Yoshimoto Nara, In The Milky Lake, as well as works from Roy Lichtenstein, Gerhard Richter, Alexander Calder, Huang Yuxing, Hao Liang, and many more.

Please join us on a guided viewing of the Contemporary works of art, as Sotheby’s unveils its Spring auctions and spearheads its year extraordinaire. The tour will be presented by Ms. Florence Ho, Head of Day & Online Sales, Contemporary Art.


Photo Credit:
Yoshitomo Nara, In the Milky Lake, 2012
Courtesy of Sotheby’s 

Artist Talk with Zhang XiaoDong and Guided Viewing of Zhang’s First Solo Exhibition in Hong Kong: “Flow”

The HKU Museum Society is pleased to present an artist talk with Chinese national treasure Zhang XiaoDong and guided viewing of Zhang’s first solo exhibition in Hong Kong: Flow.

This exhibition will showcase Zhang’s internationally acclaimed works Dragon scale binding “Diamond Sutra in 32 zhuan (seal) fonts” and “Dream of The Red Chamber” in Accordion-Dragon scale binding, there will also be 4 works that were never-before-exhibited that signposted the transformation and breakthrough in Zhang’s artistic career.

As the successor of the intangible cultural heritage Dragon scale binding and inventor of Accordion-Dragon scale binding, Zhang XiaoDong steadily created 8 binding works. From the Buddhist classics Diamond Sutra and Heart Sutra to “Dream of The Red Chamber” and “Poetry & Calligraphy of Mao Zedong” etc, Zhang brought the Dragon scale binding that budded in Tang, bloomed in Song and revived in the modern days to an international stage, and had his solo exhibition in the La Biennale di Venezia as a guest artist.

The curator of this exhibition — Sin Sin Man— put the focus on Zhang’s enlightenment of the heart and his inheritance of old to develop the new in his contemporary works. Zhang’s binding works are exquisite and demand great patience and self-cultivation for their making. The 4 new works are the extensions of the artist’s personal work “Thousand Pages” series, using tension-filled visuals and details that are intricate yet orderly, he leads the audiences into his world, voyaging through the abstract and the figurative, the intervention and the laissez-faire.


Photo credit:
Dragon scale binding “Diamond Sutra in 32 zhuan (seal) fonts”
Courtesy of Sin Sin Fine Art

Guided Viewing: “Fusion 2” – A Sculptural Exchange between Seravezza and Hong Kong with Artist Cynthia Sah

The HKU Museum Society is pleased to present a guided viewing of Fusion 2, a sculptural exchange at Asia Society Hong Kong. This tour will be guided by Artist Cynthia Sah and participating artists.

In collaboration with Arkad Foundation of Seravezza in Italy, Fusion 2 is the latest result of the Fusion project which received enthusiastic support from the Italian Cultural Institute and Consulate General of Italy in Hong Kong and the City of Seravezza. The exhibition brings together 10 talented young artists: five artists from Hong Kong and five of different nationalities, who lived and work in Italy.

Emphasizing the concept of “fusion”, specifically in integrating marble and wood, sculptors in Italy worked in marble while sculptors in Hong Kong worked in wood. Each artist was able to choose their preferred collaborative partner, working not only on their own sculptures but also on their partners’. The sculptural works are therefore the result of an unprecedented collaboration between artists who, with humility and enthusiasm, have accepted to place their own creations in the hands of another artist they have never met. 



Born in Hong Kong in 1952, Cynthia Sah grew up in Japan and Taiwan. After receiving her Master’s degree in the U.S., she has chosen to work in Italy where she lives since 1979. Her sculptures reflect the Chinese philosophy of essential equilibrium, often translated into marble or bronze, which takes shape as lightness and fluidity in space. Her artworks are in private and public collections such as Taipei Fine Art Museum, Farum International Sculpture Park in Denmark and Azuchi-Cho Cultural Center in Japan.

Private Viewing: “Eternal Enlightenment: The Virtual World of Jiajing Emperor” with Collector Anthony Cheung Kee Wee and The Hong Kong Jockey Club Series: “Joan Miró – The Poetry of Everyday Life” (Conducted in Cantonese)

The HKU Museum Society is delighted to be extended a private viewing of Eternal Enlightenment: The Virtual World of Jiajing Emperor with Collector Anthony Cheung Kee Wee and  Curator Hilda Mak, and The Hong Kong Jockey Club Series: Joan Miró – The Poetry of Everyday Life with Assistant Curator Amy Chan.

Eternal Enlightenment: The Virtual World of Jiajing Emperor

2022 marks the 500th anniversary of the Jiajing Emperor, Zhu Houcong’s (1507 – 1567) ascension to the throne. During his reign, the Ming Dynasty was plagued by internal strife and foreign threats. In the 21st year of the Jiajing period (1542), the emperor moved to West Park and lived there until his death in 1567. After retreating to the West Park, built to resemble an immortal land on earth, the Jiajing Emperor devoted himself to pursuing immortality and building temples and palaces. The imperial porcelain designs during this reign were greatly influenced by his Daoist belief. A total of nearly six hundred thousand pieces were produced during this period. The forms and patterns of these wares reflected the hopes and wishes of the Jiajing Emperor and mirrored the predicament and uncertainties of reality at the time. Through his design of the West Part, usage of vast quantities of wares, and practice of Daoist rituals, the emperor was seemingly building his idealized immortal world just like a virtual world nowadays, where he could one day transcend the temporal realm and achieve immortality.

Joan Miró – The Poetry of Everyday Life

As one of the most renowned Spanish artists of the 20th century, Joan Miró’s love for all kinds of everyday objects and their intrinsic poetic qualities is apparent throughout his long and fruitful career. Linking art to life was one of his greatest aspirations, which was realised by his unique ability to perceive the poetic qualities possessed by the most humble of objects. This exhibition presents 94 artworks (including paintings, sculptures, drawings, textiles, lithographs, posters) and audio-visual materials, many of which come from the Fundació Joan Miró, an institution founded by Miró himself in 1975.

To complement the exhibition, the Museum has invited local artists GayBird and Leelee Chan to create installations in response to Miró’s art, and local illustrator Zoie Lam to create Miró-inspired illustrations for an education booklet and a special display with elements of augmented reality effects. Artworks from the Museum’s own collection are also showcased in juxtaposition with Miró’s art to create a unique dialogue between the East and the West.


Photo Credit: Courtesy of Hong Kong Museum of Art

Charger with the Three Friends of Winter and fu character design in the underglaze blue
Ming dynasty
Collection of Hong Kong Museum of Art

Sobreteixim 6
Collection of Fundació Joan Miró, Barcelona


Guided Visit to Art Central 2023

Join us on a special visit led by Joyce Ng, Executive Committee Member of HKU Museum Society.

Art Central’s eighth edition will host a diverse group of ambitious galleries from around the globe – from Hong Kong to Busan, Johannesburg to New York, Madrid, Tokyo and beyond, Art Central 2023 will be a truly multicultural event at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.

This year’s fair will also host an exhilarating five-day programme of talks, performances, and media art in partnership with Asia Society Hong Kong Center. 


Discover Hong Kong’s Living History with Cheng Po Hung On Board the Green Antique Tram (Conducted in Cantonese)

Mr. Cheng Po Hung, a renowned Hong Kong historian, will guide us on a fascinating sightseeing journey on board the Green Antique Tram.  This private tour will take us along the northern coast of Hong Kong Island from east to west, through bustling streets, ultra-modern cityscapes and attractions as Mr. Cheng shares stories tracing their early history and development, connecting Hong Kong’s colourful history and modern culture.

Route (round trip):     Whitty Street > Shaukeiwan > Happy Valley > Whitty Street

*Itinerary is subject to change with or without prior notice




屈地街電車廠 > 筲箕灣 > 跑馬地 > 屈地街


Workshop: “From School to Stage” – A Social Enterprise Project with CEDAR-Workshop and Les Beatitudes

The HKU Museum Society is pleased to present a meaningful workshop “From School to Stage” to create your own unique wooden lamp that is being used on stage.  The aim of the workshop is to provide a place to connect with different groups to positively address social issues and the environment, and to support women and groups in need through art & craft. 

Handcrafted wooden lamps and decorative material will be prepared by CEDAR-Workshop, a social enterprise owned by Ebenezer School & Home for the Visually Impaired and operated by their own alumni.  Participants will design the collage for the lamp with recycled necktie and scarves material and will be supported by sewing mothers trained by Les Beatitudes. The workshop will also explain the project of creating 108 lamps specially designed for the famous Cantonese Opera The Floral Princess for their 65th-anniversary performance at Xiqu Center in June 2023.

This project is a collaboration between Les Beatitudes Foundation (a non-profit organization) and CEDAR-Workshop. A portion of the cost of the workshop will be donated to CEDAR-Workshop and Les Beatitudes.


More information about CEDAR-Workshop can be found here:

More information about Les Beatitudes Foundation can be found here: 

Guided Viewing: Prix Pictet: “Fire – The Global Award in Photography and Sustainability”

Join us on a special gallery tour led by Joyce Ng, Head of Gallery and Exhibitions at Asia Society.

The Prix Pictet is the world’s leading prize for photography and sustainability. Its purpose is to harness the power of photography to draw global attention to critical sustainability issues that threaten humanity- and the planet that we share with the rest of the natural world. The ninth cycle of the award takes the theme of Fire.

Over 600 photographers were nominated for this photography prize by a global network of nominators. After a rich debate the international jury arrived at a final shortlist of 13 artists, now being presented at Asia Society Hong Kong Center.

As a group, the 13 artists appearing in this cycle present fire as the most capricious of the elements – the bringer of life but also the author of terrifying destruction. Their work is a vision of what lies ahead: not only what has been but what is to come.

Since opening its doors in 2012, Asia Society has hosted a variety of arts and culture, business and policy programming and exhibitions for the wider community in Hong Kong.

More information about Asia Society’s photography exhibition can be found here:


Lecture & Lunch: The Splendour of Tokugawa Period

The HKU Museum Society is pleased to present a lecture on the Tokugawa Period. This serves as a pre-trip lecture for our tour of Japan in March, but all are welcome. The lecture will be presented by Prof. Edwin Michielsen and Prof. Puay-peng Ho.


Lecture on Culture and Political Events

The Edo period or Tokugawa Period (1603 – 1868) was an enormous rich and transformative period out of which the modern nation-state Japan eventually emerged. The period witnessed the establishment of a new capital in Edo where shoguns together with the bakufu administration and daimyo ruled large parts of the archipelago. Their rule brought peace and stability, which allowed urban centres such Edo, Kyoto, and Osaka to grow rapidly and trade and culture to flourish across the islands. This talk will provide an overview of major political and cultural events throughout the Edo period by examining domestic and international affairs under the bakufu government as well as several notable political and culture figures.


Professor Edwin Michielsen obtained an MA in Japanese Studies from Leiden University in the Netherlands and a PhD in East Asian Studies from the University of Toronto in Canada. He joined the Department of Japanese Studies at HKU in July 2022, where he researches and teaches modern Japanese and East Asian literature and culture. His book manuscript tentatively titled “Symbiotic Solidarity: Proletarian Arts and the Assembling of a Global Movement in East Asia” examines theories and practices of international solidarity during the 1920s and 1930s in East Asia found in various proletarian literary writings and cultural activities.


Lecture on Art and Architecture

Culture thrives in stable political and economic environments. Coming out of the long conflicting and insecure situation during the Sengoku (Warring States) period, Edo period ushered in 265 years of stability under the Tokugawa Shogunate (1603-1868). And Edo city (present-day Tokyo) was the centre of the united country and the seats of fifteen generations of Tokugawa shogunate. While the society had been placed under the policy of sakoku (chained/locked nation) with minimum contacts with foreign countries, many forms of culture flourished within the country with the peaceful atmosphere ensued by the long Tokugawa rule. As the society was strictly hierarchical, different forms of culture were popular among different classes of the society. The aesthetic of the ruling class is certainly for the ostentatious and the flamboyance. While most of Edo architecture in Tokyo had been destroyed in great many natural and manmade disasters, there are buildings outside of Tokyo remaining to showcase the achievement of Tokugawa ruling aesthetics, such as the sacred complexes at Nikko serving as mausolea for the Tokugawa shogun and supporting shrines and temples with the decorative expressions contained within. Such spirit of ornateness can be seen too in the culture of the lower classes, the samurai, commoners and merchants. The formalization of kimono, kabuki, garden art, sumo-wrestling, and the beginning of ukiyo-e, and advancement of lacquer art and technique are some examples of the bourgeoning Edo culture. At the same time, there were art and architecture schools that respected the Japanese tradition of simplicity and the spirit of wabi. The monochromatic paintings of the Kanō school, the rustic pottery bowls for tea ceremony and even simple Shōin style architecture. This lecture will string together different art and architectural forms that will showcase the multiplicity of the splendor of Edo Japan.


Professor Puay-peng Ho is currently the Head of the Department of Architecture, College of Design and Engineering at the National University of Singapore. Previously, he was Professor of Architecture at The Chinese University of Hong Kong. He received his First Class Honours degree in Architecture from the University of Edinburgh and Ph.D. degree in Art History from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.


Guided Viewing of Two Exhibitions at UMAG: “Alberto Reguera: Homage to Aert van der Neer” and “Red and Blue and White: Yuan and early Ming Dynasty Ceramics from the Jinglexuan Collection” with Dr. Florian Knothe

The HKU Museum Society is pleased to organize a viewing of two exhibitions at UMAG. The first exhibition Alberto Reguera: Homage to Aert van der Neer is presented with support of the HKUMS 30th Anniversary Endowment Fund. The second exhibition is Red and Blue and White: Yuan and early Ming Dynasty Ceramics from the Jinglexuan Collection. We will be guided by Dr. Florian Knothe, Director of UMAG.


Alberto Reguera: Homage to Aert van der Neer

Dazzled by the twilight of 17th-century painter Aert van der Neer’s (1603–77) Moonlit Landscape with a Road beside a Canal (1645– 50), contemporary Spanish artist Alberto Reguera created a new series of paintings as an homage to the celebrated artist of the Dutch Golden Age. Each of Reguera’s paintings displays an in-depth study of the representation of light and sky in the European tradition of painting while engaging in a dialogue with Van der Neer’s Moonlit Landscape.

The sensitive depiction of light in the night sky most inspired Alberto Reguera, in part because of the similarities to his own work. These new paintings examine and connect directly to Van der Neer’s masterpiece, and the important painterly achievements of the Dutch painter’s generation. While the Golden Age landscapes have been widely discussed and imitated over the past three centuries, it is Reguera’s particularly intense form of study and thoughtful application of style that has culminated in these highly personal and accomplished works.

The exhibition and accompanying publication is the second collaboration between the University Museum and Art Gallery and Alberto Reguera. While the first exhibition Blue Expansive Landscape (2015) was notable for the display of the painter’s two- and three-dimensional works, and his innovative ways of painting beyond the canvas, Homage to Aert van der Neer is a similarly complex endeavour that has been achieved through a successful partnership with the Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza and the artist, and the financial support of the University of Hong Kong Museum Society


Red and Blue and White: Yuan and early Ming Dynasty Ceramics from the Jinglexuan Collection

This exhibition documents the advanced development of red-and-white and blue-and-white Chinese ceramics. These treasured artefacts are highly sophisticated and they led to a production of unprecedented importance both for the domestic and, eventually, the foreign market.

Interestingly, while the surface decoration exemplifies technological advances in glaze materials and firing techniques, the depicted iconography employs a vocabulary of symbols long known and celebrated in Chinese culture. Rare examples stand out for they also display stylistic features adopted into the manufacture of export wares that were, like some of the decorative bottles and bowls, sent to patrons in the Middle East and show more Islamic than Chinese shapes and motifs.

At the University Museum, this selection of early red-and-white and blue-and-white ceramics prefaces and extends the museum’s own collection and the array of further developed forms and colours that characterise later Ming and Qing dynasty porcelains. We are grateful to the Jinglexuan Collection for this opportunity to curate such an exceptionally expansive and educational display.



Dr. Florian Knothe teaches the history of decorative arts in the 17th and 18th century with particular focus on the social and historic importance of royal French manufacture. He has long been interested in the early modern fascination with Chinoiserie and the way royal workshops and smaller private enterprises helped to create and cater to this long-lasting fashion. Dr. Knothe worked at The Metropolitan Museum of Art focusing on European Sculpture and Decorative Arts, and on European and East Asian glass at The Corning Museum of Glass, before his current position as Director of the University Museum and Art Gallery at HKU.


Images: Courtesy of UMAG

PEQUEÑAS FANTASÍAS CROMÁTICAS II . Alberto Reguera & Yuhuchun Vase, Yuan dynasty