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Life at HKU SPACE Memorabilia

Bringing Art to the Community

The 1960-61 prospectus cover designed by John Warner

Wucius Wong

In the 1950s, there were few if any art-related activities in the city. But when the DEMS started to offer art courses in 1958, there was a keen response from the community which laid the foundation for a wide range of art courses that remain hugely popular to this day.

John Warner, the first curator of the Hong Kong Museum of Art in 1962, could not find a better way to promote art Hong Kong but to teach at the DEMS from 1958 until 1963, before the opening of the Museum.

Later, two famous Chinese ink painters Lui Shou-kwan and Wucius Wong also taught courses at the DE MS which included “A Survey of Art” and a “Basic Painting Workshop”.

1976, Laurence Tam who succeeded John Warner as curator of the Hong Kong Museum of Art also taught numerous courses for the DEMS from 1969 until 1977, such as “Chinese Painting”, “Basic Painting” and “History of Chinese Art”.

John Warner, Lui Shou-kwan, Wucius Wong and Laurence Tam spent much of their lives on art development in Hong Kong, leaving footsteps for their apprentices to follow through. The School’s art courses were so well-established by all the past tutors, making it possible to have Chinese calligraphy courses and courses in sculpture added later and taught by other renowned tutors such as calligrapher Wong Chai-lok who started teaching in 1996 and was awarded for his excellence in teaching; calligrapher Yip Man-yam who started teaching in 1991 and Chinese ink painter Hung Hoi who started teaching in 1984. These three inspiring artists and teachers are still conducting classes today.