Hong Kong 3D Museum
The city’s first 3D museum has just opened! Photo opportunities abound in this crazy hall of illusion, which is based on the story of Hong Kong. Jayson Albano jumps in to find out more
Having just opened its doors to the public on July 7 in Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong’s first 3D museum offers visitors a chance to see the story of Hong Kong through a unique medium, while literally adding their own elements to its history.
The idea of opening a 3D museum (also known as a trick eye museum) in Hong Kong first came about when the co-founders went to Korea and visited one there. Realising that it was a popular tourist attraction, they thought about the possibility of introducing the same concept here.
“In terms of attractions in Hong Kong, we don’t have all that many,” Winston Lo, the Museum’s strategy and finance director, explains. “Some of the main ones we have are Disneyland, Ocean Park, Ngong Ping 360 and Madame Tussauds. There’s still a lot of room to develop the tourist attractions that Hong Kong has to offer.”
It was only a matter of months before their plan came to fruition. In a little over half a year, the 10,000sq ft museum was developed, housing over 70 original exhibitions categorised in different zones. These include paintings based on Hong Kong’s iconic scenery, from Victoria Harbour and the Bank of China Tower, to nostalgic landscapes depicting street hawkers, Queen’s Pier in Central (demolished in 1998), and the infamous old Kai Tak Airport.
To differentiate Hong Kong’s 3D museum from other trick eye museums, Lo mentions that they made sure to incorporate the essence of Hong Kong into each of the exhibits. “The other 3D museums don’t have art that depicts local culture. We want to emphasise the fact that we want local culture infused in our artwork. For example, we have one [exhibit] of the Tsing Ma Bridge and we have one of the old airport in Kowloon City. The planes were so near to the ground that you could almost touch themn.Now we have one of our exhibits showing just that,” says Lo. “Visitors to our museum can make it look like they’re holding on to the wing of the plane.” That’ll certainly ramp up the nostalgia.
Other zones in the museum present the history of Chinese culture, depicting traditional customs, festivals, architecture and natural scenery, as well as areas geared more towards loved ones – romantic settings for visitors to create their own love story – and an ‘imaginary wonderland’, where you’ll find paintings that will satisfy even the most picky of photographers.
“We designed it so that it would be suitable for families, lovers, friends – even for corporate training. You can even come and take selfies. It’s for everyone,” Lo declares. Expect new exhibitions to appear during festive seasons, such as Christmas and Valentine’s Day. Not only do people have a chance to interact with the art, they also get the chance to exercise their own storytelling and creativity. “Artwork has no boundaries. You can always put new topics into art,” muses Lo.
One feature of the paintings is that they incorporate an element of surrealism into the depicted scenes, which allows locals to see Hong Kong in a way they’ve never seen before. “We have a painting of Victoria Harbour, and we added a golden dragon coming out of the painting. You can do anything with it – you could stand behind the dragon or in front of it. Or the artwork of the Bank of China Tower – in real life you can only see it from far away, but in our artwork we made it look as though you’d be standing on it or touching the tip. So it’s something surreal as well.”
As if all this isn’t enough, you can also get your surreal rocks off at the ‘3D-experience zone’ where visitors can enjoy an assortment of simulations including an imitation starry sky, plus optical illusions ranging from a mirror maze to an infinity tunnel. We just hope you’ll be able to work out where the exit is when you’re done…
Hong Kong 3D Museum 1/F, Hilton Tower, Tsim Sha Tsui East, 3568 2827; hk3dm.com.hk. 10am-10pm. $149, $100 (conc).