The heir to one of Hong Kong’s greatest fortunes is putting art in his malls and has set up an academy to support young Chinese talent. Designed by Adrian Cheng, K11 is the world’s first mall-museum concept. Find out all about this new Hong Kong arts center.
About K11 Art Mall and its expansion to 9 Chinese cities by 2023
Located in Tsim Sha Tsui, in the Kowloon district, the K11 Art Mall is already ranked among the best artistic malls in the world. Its founder is called adrian Cheng, heir to one of Hong Kong’s greatest fortunes. At 35, this Harvard graduate and former UBS banker now spends most of his time running the family business. His grandfather and his father then created NWS, an empire of commerce, real estate and transport. Forbes values the family’s fortune at over US$14 billion. In March, Adrian Cheng Chi-kong, by his full name, was promoted to vice-president of NWS, known to the general public in particular for its jewelry boutiques, Chow Tai Fook, whose red walls border Hong Kong, and also many cities.
Recently ranked No. 46 on the Art Review Power 100 list of the 100 most powerful people in the art world, Adrian Cheng announces the expansion of K11 to 9 Chinese cities by 2023, to put education, imagination and inspiration within the reach of new segments of the population and thus promote dialogue between the artistic world and the public.
Assistance to Chinese Artists
With the K11 Foundation, Adrian Cheng has defined two objectives. The first objective is to support the development of contemporary Chinese art in the world. The second concerns the promotion of world art to the public in China. It should be noted that his institution was, in 2010, the first art foundation in China “not controlled by the State”. By combining Malls and a foundation, he was able to create a new hybrid model, combining art and commerce. Exhibition and works of art are installed in the public space. The foundation does not only organize exhibitions. It also runs a kind of artist incubator. Near Wuhan, 800 km west of Shanghai, Adrian Cheng has created 11 studios for talents he considers “promising” and whom he hosts in residence in order to relieve them of all material worries.