Christie’s Education Asia Pacific welcomes you to join us in Hong Kong for an extraordinary series of art & luxury courses, and specialist-led guided tours. From Saturday 26th November, come by our learning hub during Christie’s Hong Kong Autumn Auctions at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, and let us take you behind the scenes of the fascinating art world.
We had a conversation with Sara Mao, Director of Christie's Education Asia Pacific about the exciting programmes!
- Can you please tell us a bit about yourself and your role at Christie’s Education?
My name is Sara Mao, I am director of Christie’s Education Asia pacific, where we curate programmes in art and luxury, on connoisseurship, history, markets and in specific categories, often relating to the auction categories at Christie’s, as well as the market trends of the time (e.g. digital art and NFT’s). We also host programmes in art law and art business. Apart from public programmes, we also cater to private clients and corporates who can request bespoke programmes suited to their individual needs. Christie’s Education is unique in that we are able to offer academic knowledge together with the most up-to-date market knowledge, for participants to have a deeper understanding in their area of study, whilst gaining insight into the commercial world as well.
- Why is Hong Kong a good city to study art in Asia?
Hong Kong has transformed itself from its past as being a cultural desert to a cultural oasis in the past few years! There are over a hundred local and international galleries, institutions such as Tai Kwun and Asia Society host regular art shows, while Asia Art Archive is a great resource for those wishing to research on the recent histories of art in Asia. Hong Kong Museum of Art had a facelift two years ago and houses some of the best Chinese paintings and works of art collections from notable Hong Kong collectors, with its location right in the centre of town by the harbourfront. And of course, we have the West Kowloon Cultural District, with the M+ museum showcasing contemporary art, and the Hong Kong Palace Museum featuring top Chinese art pieces, with exquisite pieces on loan from the Beijing Palace Museum. In addition to galleries and public institutions, there are also various private museums and organisations such as the K11 Art Foundation, that host lectures, symposiums and exhibitions.
- What is the highlight of the HK autumn auction week and how it reflects on our courses?
There are so many highlights it’s really hard to pinpoint on a specific programme! We are lucky that we can curate our programmes around key auction lots and non-selling exhibitions, so that we can offer academic lectures together with an up-close viewing and handling of the objects. And because of that, it’s different every season! This season we’re delighted to be offering programmes and tours on Chagall and T-Rex.
- Tell us about the learning outcomes - What can the participants expect during the lessons?
We hope that students, especially those who are able to be in Hong Kong, can experience our unique and interactive approach to learning. For example, most of our Chinese works of art programmes include a handling session – through tactile learning, participants can understand the weight, body, glaze and texture of the object much better than just learning through slides. This is probably the most unique and prized aspect of our programme, that can’t be delivered in many other places!
- If I am not in Hong Kong, can I join virtually? Will this influence the learning experience?
- Yes, joining virtually is always an option for our Asia Pacific programmes. Given our past experience in hosting programmes virtually during the pandemic, we believe that students will benefit from the same academic knowledge and interaction with lecturers and other participants, in our virtual classroom and chatroom. We have become quite adept at using our webinar tours to host virtual tours and handling sessions, though of course it would be nicer to be in person to attend those sections!
See the full programme, please click here.