Monthly Archives: March 2013


BLOG – How to Tell the Time from the HK Skyline 6

Photographer Patrick Beekers explains how onlookers can tell the time (albeit very roughly, to an interval of 15-minutes) simply by glancing at Central Plaza. The building was completed in 1992, features 78 floors and remains the city’s third tallest skyscraper. It also contains the world’s highest church…

“The part of the summit between the roof and the mast itself functions as a clock; incorporated in the mast’s four spandrel neon bands is a high-tech and high-profile lighting system that changes colouring in a regular sequence every quarter of an hour.

The system works according to a six-hour colour cycle (6pm and 12am: red, 7pm and 1am: white, 8pm and 2am: purple, 9pm and 3am: yellow, 10pm and 4am: pink, and 11pm and 5am: green); every quarter of an hour one neon band changes its current colour to the one of the next hour, so for instance 6,30 pm would have two red bands (lower ones) and two white ones (upper).”

The following chart comes courtesy of Redditor carpediem

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PLACES – The Hakka Walled Village of Tsang Tai Uk, Sha Tin 8

‘Big House of the Tsangs’ or Tsang Tai Uk (aka Shan Ha Wai – the ‘Walled Village at the Mountain’s Foot’) is a Hakka walled village in Sha Tin, near Lion Rock Tunnel. It is a Grade I heritage site as of 2007, and is probably the most accessible village of its kind in HK…

Construction began in 1848 by the wealthy granite merchant and stonemason Tsang Koon-Man…

It took 20 years to complete, during a time when HK was awash with pirates. The original construction materials are still intact today, and much of the fortified village is still inhabited…


PHOTOGRAPHY – ‘Elite’ – Michael Chan’s Commentary on Education & Poverty 6

Michael Chan’s work makes a direct link between poverty in Hong Kong and its outdated education system, which emphasises constant assessment over creativity. His creative photographic series ‘Elite’ is best explained in his own words…

If the use of the word ‘poverty’ is meant to be understood as ‘absolute poverty’, then there may not be that many ‘poor people’ in Hong Kong. This kind of narrow interpretation differs from the social reality of Hong Kong today. To understand Hong Kong’s ‘poverty problem’, first we must clarify the definition of poverty.

The Gini index in Hong Kong is amongst the top five in the world, which means there is a serious gap between the rich and the poor. All shades of unfair social phenomena – such as educational favouritism, monopolies, real estate hegemony, difficulties facing the elderly and new immigrants, etc. – all contribute to the growth of poverty.


ART – Julianne Yang’s Citylines – Sketches of Unseen Strangers in HK 3

Julianne Yang’s Citylines is a new tumblr blog featuring sketches of Hong Kongers going about their day.

We do not meet her subjects in the photos, instead each person is rendered in blue or black ink giving us just an ‘impression’ of small, lonely moments in the life of our city…


PHOTOGRAPHY – More Aerial Shots of HK’s Coffin Homes, by Ko Chung Ming 14

Earlier this year, Benny Lam’s aerial shots of HK’s tiny, sub-divided homes went viral, drawing attention to the city’s dire housing crisis. A similar project by Ko Chung Ming also highlights the claustrophobic reality of HK’s poor in his 2012 series ‘Cents Mansion’…

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“A rooftop house in Tsuen Wan (only 7ft high) under threat from poisonous centipedes and potential ceiling collapse”

‘Cage homes’. ‘coffin rooms’, sub-divided dwellings and steaming-hot, illegal rooftop flats are becoming all the more common in a city renowned for having the most expensive rental property market in the world…