The Tortuous Path to Preservation

The Tung Fat Building seemed like the perfect opportunity for Victoria Allan to venture into property development. The nine-storey, 1960s-era building was a classic example of Hong Kong’s postwar tong lau tenements, known for their minimalist Streamline Moderne architecture, and it occupied a prime spot on the waterfront of fast-gentrifying Kennedy Town. But Allan, who […]

Posted in: Architecture, Art and Design, Asia Pacific, Heritage and Preservation, Interior Space by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on The Tortuous Path to Preservation , , , , , ,

Hong Kong’s Problem with Heritage

Kowloon Station, 1981. Photo by Loose Grip 99 It’s one of those mid-summer days when it seems impossible to escape the heat, so it comes as a relief to step into the air-conditioned room that houses Sparkle! Can We Live (Together), an oddly-named exhibition that explores the relationship between artists and the communities in which […]

A Police Dormitory Reborn as a Design Hub

Hong Kong’s design scene is thriving, but like many of this city’s creative endeavours, it exists beyond the spotlight, in old factory buildings and back alley studios. That could soon change. After two years of renovations, the former Police Married Quarters on Aberdeen Street has been reborn as PMQ, a design hub that aims to […]

Posted in: Architecture, Art and Design, Asia Pacific, Heritage and Preservation, Interior Space, Public Space by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on A Police Dormitory Reborn as a Design Hub , , , , , ,

China’s Heritage Policy: Missing a Step

The 18 steps (十八梯) in Chongqing form a wonderfully atmospheric alleyway. It’s one of many older streets sunk down amongst the thrusting skyscrapers of this rapidly growing city which feel saturated with history, in contrast to the modern development all around. Clambering up the steps, I feel like I’ve found the traditional China I’ve been […]

Posted in: Architecture, Asia Pacific, Heritage and Preservation, History, Society and Culture by Nicholas Olczak Comments Off on China’s Heritage Policy: Missing a Step , , , , , ,

Rethinking Urban Renewal in Hong Kong

This is a feature story that was originally published in the July 2010 edition of Muse magazine. The photos accompanying this article were taken around the Graham Street Market in Central. Standing in the soggy heat of a late spring afternoon, Katty Law reflected on the irony that it took a movie a mere two […]

Saving an Historic Site — Then What?

When Cynthia Lee Hong-yee found out that her family planned to sell her grandfather’s private garden to developers, she returned from the United States to take photos of the lush greenery and eclectic Western-influenced Chinese architecture. “I was capturing some of the details and I realized I just couldn’t capture Dragon Garden’s greatness,” she said. […]

Posted in: Architecture, Art and Design, Asia Pacific, Heritage and Preservation, History, Public Space, Society and Culture by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on Saving an Historic Site — Then What? , , , , ,

Save Our City’s Kitsch!

The Orange Julep. Photo by afternoon_sunlight Montreal has lost one of its more remarkable pieces of kitsch architecture: today, the Canada Motel, a 47-year-old landmark on Taschereau Blvd. on the South Shore, closed its doors for good. The motel, topped by a giant neon sign, is designed in the style of a typical Quebec farmhouse, […]