Miniature as Method: Learning from Hong Kong Urban Design in Micro-Scale

“Miniature as Method: Learning from Hong Kong Urban Design in Micro-Scale” by Emily Verla Bovino investigates Hong Kong miniature through exhibition histories, interviews and conversations. Micro-scale models of everyday life are sponsored by companies whose investments facilitate the vanishing of customs and environments that miniatures celebrate. Through case studies and ground research on micro-modellers, miniaturists, enthusiasts and collectors, the project sheds light on Hong Kong miniature as both a design field and a means to study, and encourages more interest in urban design.

“Miniature as Method: Learning from Hong Kong Urban Design in Micro-Scale” by Emily Verla Bovino investigates Hong Kong miniature through exhibition histories, interviews and conversations. Micro-scale models of everyday life are sponsored by companies whose investments facilitate the vanishing of customs and environments that miniatures celebrate. Through case studies and ground research on micro-modellers, miniaturists, enthusiasts and collectors, the project sheds light on Hong Kong miniature as both a design field and a means to study, and encourages more interest in urban design.

The M+ / Design Trust Research Fellowship programme consists of two separate fellowships investigating issues related to architecture and design. One supports research projects focused on Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area in an Asian or global context, and the second supports research projects related to Asia more broadly, closely in line with the curatorial position of M+, the Hong Kong museum dedicated to visual culture of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Past fellows include: Ling Fan (2015); Joseph Grima (2016); the team of Daniel Cooper and Juliana Kei (2016); Thomas Daniell (2017); Hugh Davies (2018); the team of Fan Lok Yi and Sampson Wong (2018); Yasmin Tri Aryani (2019) and Oliver Elser (2019); Farzin Lotfi-Jam and Mark Wasiuta (2020); Jason Lau (2020). ‘Miniature as Method: Learning from Hong Kong Urban Design in Micro-Scale’ by Emily Verla Bovino

More details about M+ / Design Trust Research Fellowship here

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2021
Fellow: Emily Verla Bovino

Emily Verla Bovino, an historian, urbanist, artist and writer who spent formative years in Hong Kong, researches the Hong Kong miniature. Working with a curatorial approach to design ethnography, she focuses on collectible model buses, precision replicas of street life, and designer toys as a means to explore the social life and affective dimension of architecture and urbanism in the city.

Organisation: M+, West Kowloon Cultural District, Design Trust

About M+
M+ is a museum dedicated to collecting, exhibiting, and interpreting visual art, design and architecture, moving image, and Hong Kong visual culture of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. In Hong Kong’s West Kowloon Cultural District, we are building one of the largest museums of modern and contemporary visual culture in the world, with a bold ambition to establish ourselves as one of the world’s leading cultural institutions. Our aim is to create a new kind of museum that reflects our unique time and place, a museum that builds on Hong Kong’s historic balance of the local and the international to define a distinctive and innovative voice for Asia’s twenty-first century.

About the West Kowloon Cultural District
Located on Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbor, the West Kowloon Cultural District is one of the largest cultural projects in the world. Its vision is to create a vibrant new cultural quarter for Hong Kong. With a complex of theatres, performance spaces, and museums, the West Kowloon Cultural District will produce and host world-class exhibitions, performances, and cultural events, as well as provide twenty-three hectares of public open space, including a two-kilometer waterfront promenade.

About Design Trust
Design Trust was established in 2014 by Hong Kong Ambassadors of Design, a registered charity in Hong Kong since 2007, as a grant-funding platform. Design Trust supports creative projects that develop expertise and build research initiatives and content related to Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area. Working across a multiplicity of design disciplines, from graphics, media, and architecture to the built environment, Design Trust aims to actively accelerate creative research, design, and the development of meaningful projects that advocate for the positive role of design.