• What's On

In the Midst of a Storm: Hong Kong’s Early Typhoons

19 July to 25 September 2016
Throughout Hong Kong’s development from a small fishing village to its present state as a bustling metropolis, it experienced several tropical cyclones each year. In this part of the world, tropical cyclones are known as typhoons. This exhibition visually transports visitors into the past to learn about these catastrophic events and the 1874 and 1906 typhoons in particular. Historical images and artefacts will offer visitors a glimpse of these major weather events and how Hong Kongers dealt with and lived harmony with the natural world.
By showing the disastrous consequences of typhoons over a century ago, this exhibition aims to increase the public's awareness of the impact typhoons had on Hong Kong and to pay tribute to the many heroes who safeguarded the lives of people in Hong Kong during typhoons. The exhibition was initiated by the Master Mariner Michael J. Jones who has spent many years researching Hong Kong’s typhoons, and is supported by the Hong Kong Observatory.
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Corals: Our Underwater Living Treasures

08 Jun 2016 - 23 Oct 2016 

Corals: Our Underwater Living Treasure featuring the science, benefits, threats, and solutions facing corals in Hong Kong and the “Coral Triangle” in Southeast Asia, which includes the marine areas of Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Solomon Islands and Timor-Leste.

The Coral Triangle in Southeast Asia is also highlighted since it is the global epicentre of marine biodiversity, home to over 500 species of reef-building corals and 3000 fish species. At this exhibition, visitors will learn about where their fresh fish was born and lived before arriving on the dinner plate in Hong Kong.  Half of the live reef food fish eaten in Hong Kong, such as grouper, comes from the Coral Triangle.

This exhibition will also screen the latest episode of Conservation International’s Nature is Speaking short film series, titled Coral Reef.  International film and martial arts superstar Donnie Yen Ji-Dan (甄子丹) performs the voice of Coral Reef, lending his vibrant vibrato to personify the amazing, but oft-overlooked creatures which sustain one-quarter of all marine life. 

“Corals: Our Underwater Living Treasures” will not only feature graphical and video content created by CI-Hong Kong and SWIMS, but will also display coral skeleton samples obtained by scientists from within Hong Kong’s marine zone and pieces in the Hong Kong Maritime Museum collection.  The Hong Kong Maritime Museum will also conduct special events such as public lectures by coral experts and family workshops that will include hands-on activities for adults and children alike. 



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Shahzia Sikander: Apparatus of Power
16 March to 5 June 2016
Shahzia Sikander (b.1969) presents her first major solo exhibition in Hong Kong. This body of work explores Hong Kong’s colonial complexity, both historical and current. Installed within the Former Explosives Magazine Compound of Asia Society Hong Kong Center, Shahzia Sikander: Apparatus of Power includes drawings on paper and large-scale animations. The exhibition’s title refers to the potential of an image to communicate in multiple contexts, forms, and formats.
A satellite exhibition is on view at the Hong Kong Maritime Museum from March 16 to June 5, presenting a selection of Sikander’s work that explores the city’s unique cultural heritage within the global maritime trade. Highlights from the Museum collection of Chinese export goods and the East India Company are displayed as a cultural dialogue with her contemporary art.
The exhibition is curated by Claire Brandon, Ph.D. Candidate at the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University, with Ashley Nga-sai Wu of Asia Society Hong Kong Center as Assistant Curator.
Coolie Trade

In Search of Prosperity via Victoria Harbour 1842-1945

19 February to 6 March 2016

The Hong Kong Maritime Museum is holding the special exhibition ‘In Search of Prosperity via Victoria Harbour 1842-1945’ from 19 February to 6 March 2016, exploring the history of coolie trade in Hong Kong. By the early 19th century, continued unrest at home and news of exciting discoveries abroad stimulated many mainland Chinese to seek a better life at elsewhere. Some chose to work in cities close to their hometowns, such as Hong Kong and Macau while others moved overseas such as America, Australia, and Southeast Asia via Hong Kong. The mass immigration helped drive Hong Kong’s economic development and gave rise to new service industries in Hong Kong. Hong Kong was, and still is, a vital funnel through which talent, money, and ideas flowed.

Shaping the pot on a wheel

Trading China: Paintings of the Porcelain Production Process in the Qing Dynasty

23 October 2015 to 1 May 2016

Find out how porcelain was produced at the famous Jingdezhen kilns in the Qing dynasty (18th century).

This special exhibition showcases a series of 34 paintings recently acquired by the Museum that document the process of making and trading porcelain from the famous Jingdezhen kilns, from mining the clay to selling the porcelain to foreign merchants through local dealers. Painted for the Western market, these illustrations vividly capture the work of the many specialised labourers as well as the way in which the trade and transport of the finished porcelain was arranged.

From the 16th century, Western demand for Chinese porcelain, exported through Guangzhou, grew. The technique of overglaze enamel painting, which originated in the imperial workshops, was used at Jingdezhen from the early 18th century for the production of imperial, domestic and export wares, reinforcing its role as China’s largest porcelain production centre. This style was very popular and led to innovations in ceramic production in Europe.  


The Hong Kong Maritime Museum is grateful to the late Susan Chen Hardy for her generous donation of this collection of paintings. Susan was a long-time supporter of the Museum and a passionate connoisseur and collector of Chinese art. She and her husband Anthony Hardy have made significant contributions to the Museum and we are very pleased to welcome this exceptional series of paintings into our permanent collection.