2014 - 2015

M+ / Design Trust Research Fellowship Grant

Hong Kong as an Archetype: Revisiting Modernist Ideas of the City and its Urban Forms

Ling Fan / M+, West Kowloon Cultural District

Beginning 1 February 2015, US-based, Chinese architect and scholar Ling Fan begins six-month term as the inaugural M+/Design Trust Fellow, for which he will be based at M+ to conduct research on the topic ‘Hong Kong as an Archetype: Revisiting Modernist Ideas of the City and its Urban Forms’.

The M+/Design Trust Fellowship aims to support the work of a proven scholar or practitioner in contributing to the development of design and architecture-related knowledge, understanding and research relevant to Hong Kong and the Greater Pearl River Delta region. The Fellow, selected by a 5-member panel after a rigorous, open application process, receives a monthly stipend from Design Trust for between 3 to 6 months, as well as a one-time travel grant for overseas awardees. In addition to supporting his research, the Fellowship offers Fan and the Hong Kong community to engage each other, including through a paper and public talk to be presented by Fan upon completion of his Fellowship.

Fan’s Fellowship research aims to recuperate the idea of the ‘Chinese city’ as a modernist project that began in the 1940s by conceptualising it according to two extreme logics: one driven primarily by political power, as exemplified by Beijing, and the other being propelled by economic power, as in Hong Kong. The dialectics between Hong Kong and Beijing, representing the economic and the political, introduces an archetypal contrast that will appear and reappear throughout China’s recent history of urban development in ever-new incarnations. In this context, Fan will examine how Hong Kong, coming from its own, unique geopolitical situation, represents a critical passage for understanding the emergence of the contemporary ‘Chinese city.’

About the Partnering Institution:

M+ is the new museum for visual culture in Hong Kong, as part of the West Kowloon Cultural District, encompassing 20th and 21st century art, design and architecture, and the moving image from Hong Kong, China, Asia and beyond. From its vantage point in one of the world's most dynamic regions, M+ seeks, through its exhibitions, programming and permanent collection, to document the past, inform the present and contribute to the future of visual culture within an ever more interconnected global landscape.