Hong Kong property developer New World Development is bringing a flagship store of New York’s The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) to Hong Kong this year.
The 6,000 sq ft store, MoMa’s largest in Asia, is to open in K11 Musea, the retail part of Tsim Sha Tsui’s Victoria Dockside, which New World wants to develop as a culture and arts district.
“We look forward to welcoming a wide community of Hongkongers, visitors and tourists, who can explore innovative good design,” said Thomas Randon , general manager of retail division at The Museum of Modern Art.
Adrian Cheng, New World’s executive vice-chairman and general manager, is a board member of MoMa PS1 and led on the introduction of the store in Hong Kong, according to the developer.
“Adrian, behind the scenes, sewed up the deal and asked [MoMA]: why don’t you open in Hong Kong? So they decided to open here. And we offered this space to MoMA [at K11 Musea],” a spokeswoman for New World said.
The company denied any suggestions that rent was lowered for MoMa because of Cheng’s links with the arts institution.
Founded in 1929 as an educational institution, the New York museum is one of the world’s best-known art museums and an important cultural institution, with 2.8 million visitors in 2016. MoMA has two other stores in Asia, in Tokyo and Kyoto.
The museum’s Hong Kong store will sell merchandise such as Yayoi Kusama’s Yellow Trees Skateboard Triptych. K11 Musea will also host Asia’s first Festival de Cannes Film Week, in association with one of the three biggest international film festivals, again thanks to Cheng.
Mariana Kou, head of China education and Hong Kong consumer research at brokerage and investment group CLSA, said the MoMA store could add variety, broaden the offering and enhance the cultural experience for locals and tourists.
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“Hong Kong is a key art auction market. We have had a number of interesting projects in recent years, such as PMQ and Tai Kwun, and have seen the growing popularity of events around Art Basel,” Kou said. “We also have an exciting pipeline – the Palace Museum and M+.”
(Source: South China Morning Post)