Co-founder / Executive Director of Design Trust
(an initiative of the Hong Kong Ambassadors of Design)
Our heritage has been our grounding, and has brought us innovation. Design Trust Futures Studio 2019+ is engaged within and around the historic 1936 Haw Par Mansion in the Tai Hang neighborhood, an entry point into analysing Hong Kong's rich heritage, researching the legacy of individuals to the collective community in shaping our city's future. Through design dialogues and workshops, we engage the public with exciting public programmes, curated tours - free and open to the public. There is no power for change greater than a community discovering and understanding of “heritage is innovation”. Hong Kong-based designers, grant recipients and mentees of DESIGN TRUST have been exploring these themes through deep research, experimentation and critical making, catalysing and engaging in an in-depth process to create something new, without boundaries yet with support on free exchange of ideas. The site-specicity, design parameters and the creative energy of the partners involved, the advisory community to artisans have sculpted the designer-mentees' current practice, thinking and ideology on heritage, innovation and identities for the last year and it has been most inspiring to witness. Contributing to the larger creative culture and outreach as a public exhibition, this year-long initiative showcases our design journey and process.
DESIGN TRUST's mentees have been embracing the challenges of learning new methods of production, reusing and reinstating artefacts from the Haw Par archive; working within the local micro-factory system and the wider design ecology.
Our programme partner Tai Ping has been generously sharing their expertise in carpet making allowing our community of designers to examine making and craftsmanship by taking inspiration from the past and now to build new dialogues within the context of the Haw Par Mansion in Hong Kong. Our partner foundation Haw Par Music as generously opened up the site, sharing their own conservation practice and architectural design explorations, contributing to the process of design research and curatorial approach. From workshops, round-tables, visits to the Hong Kong Heritage Archive, Xiamen Tai Ping factory, and the research trip to Singapore, the designers explored the crossing between cultures and different design disciplines, linking educational, aesthetic, mythical, inspirational and economic legacies. We invite you to revel and be inspired by the incredibly innovative prototypes, installations and narratives present in this exhibition and event series, and something we hope can continue as a pilot collaboration model between the nonprofit sector, educators, larger community and designers in and around Hong Kong and beyond. Without heritage, there is no innovation; heritage is innovation.