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Hong Kong Celebrated the Power of Art In-Person and Virtually, as Art Basel – the World’s Leading Contemporary Art Fair – Returned in May


HONG KONG & LOS ANGELES–()–In May, the Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) rolled out the “Arts in Hong Kong” to promote a series of in-person and virtual events throughout the month that have been arranged by fair organizers and cultural institutions around the city. Arts in Hong Kong ensured that audiences could reconnect with art and the vitality of Hong Kong, whether in person or abroad.

When event venues shut down globally during the pandemic, people flocked online in record numbers to satisfy their deep craving for art and culture. As the world cautiously looks to resume international travel and bring back events, it is fitting that art is a driving force to make this happen, with Hong Kong paving the way in the hope of safely staging large-scale events again.

Hong Kong is Safely Hosting Major International Events

After an absence of more than two years due to the pandemic, Art Basel is officially scheduled to take place from May 21-23 at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC). More than 100 galleries from Asia, Europe and the Americas have confirmed their participation. In addition, Art Central will run concurrently at the HKCEC for the first time, and is free to attend with registration. The annual French May offers ongoing cultural entertainment, with over 100 events running from May 1 to June 30.

To ensure that all fair participants have a stress-free experience, best-practice health and safety protocols will be followed, including mask-wearing, timed entry, reduced capacity, wider aisles and regular cleaning.

In October of last year, the HKTB launched a standardized COVID-19 hygiene protocol providing unified guidelines on hygiene and anti-epidemic measures for tourism-related industries in Hong Kong. Today, more than 2,000 businesses and outlets have adopted the new protocol that allows customers to easily recognize and understand the measures in place and strengthen visitors’ confidence in traveling to Hong Kong upon the resumption of inbound travel.

Art Events that Defy Borders and Barriers are Offered Online

Art has long had the power to break down boundaries, and unite and inspire people. Thanks to the depth of its imagination and creativity, Hong Kong’s dynamic arts community nimbly pivoted to offer hybrid physical and virtual events for people around the world.

In addition to Art Basel, which launched a new digital initiative, “Art Basel Live: Hong Kong,” in parallel with the physical show to amplify its international visibility, fairs that have adopted the hybrid format include Art Central and Yim Tin Tsai Arts Festival 2021. While Hong Kong Arts Festival’s PLUS programme has featured a diverse line-up of online and in-venue experiences, the soon-to-be-opened West Kowloon Cultural District’s M+ museum offered online movie screenings on demand.

HKTB Gets in on the Creative, Interactive Fun

Actively contributing to Hong Kong’s art revival, the HKTB created a dedicated campaign website, (www.discoverhongkong.com/Arts), which is a one-stop platform providing essential information about Arts in Hong Kong and introducing online showcases, art itineraries, an event calendar, artsy offers, interviews with art insiders, and more.

In the online showcases, curated virtual experiences, provided by both international fairs and local events, are all at the fingertips of viewers, regardless of where they are located. It also features an interactive microfilm presented by two local celebrities – multidisciplinary artist Ivana Wong and director Kearen Pang – at some of the city’s coolest attractions, including Tai Kwun, The Mills and the West Kowloon Cultural District.

While the world waits for international travel to resume, the wealth of virtual experiences on offer once again highlights Hong Kong’s diverse wealth of cultural treasures and underscores the city’s ability to remain agile in the face of unprecedented disruption.



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