About Kwai Fung Hin
Established in 1991, Kwai Fung Hin has developed into a cultural force of repute in Hong Kong through its long and distinguished history of advancing artistic exchange between the East and West.
With a dynamic network consisting of a highly-regarded art gallery, consultancy, publishing house, lithograph publisher and cultural foundation, over three decades we have launched over:
- 160 gallery exhibitions;
- 13 institutional exhibitions;
- 52 catalogues and monographs; and
- 133 series of lithographs,
earning a reputation for our particular expertise in 20th century modern art and Asian contemporary art.
We have worked with and supported a dynamic roster of over one hundred artists, including Zao Wou-Ki, Lalan, Li Huayi, Pan Gongkai and Ai Xuan, whose extensive cultural experiences and global perspectives bridge the West and the East in fresh and remarkable ways.
These artists have brought new dimensions to the canon of art history with their radical and uncompromising visions, overturning centuries-old traditions and ushering in a new era of artistic development.
Now in our fourth decade, we continue in our efforts:
to promote East-West artistic dialogue;
to support our artists and share their visionary work with audiences around the world through institutional collaborations and innovative cultural initiatives; and
to devote ourselves to developing educational opportunities and promoting dialogue within the artistic community in the city of Hong Kong and beyond.
Pioneering East-West artistic exchange
Introducing Western art to Hong Kong and mainland China
With its mission of bridging cultures, Kwai Fung Hin Art Gallery was the first gallery in Hong Kong to promote French art, focusing on École de Paris (School of Paris) painters.
In 1996, an era when Western art was rarely seen in mainland China, Catherine Kwai curated a milestone retrospective of École de Paris painter Marcel Mouly at Shanghai Art Museum. This was followed over the years by exhibitions of Art Informel painters such as Georges Mathieu, Gérard Schneider and Pierre Soulages.
Supporting exceptional modern and contemporary Chinese artists in search of new visions of modernity
Kwai Fung Hin has worked closely over the years with a roster of innovative and highly accomplished Chinese artists who share the common goal of advancing modernity in Chinese artistic culture.
Modernists such as Zao Wou-Ki, Lalan and Walasse Ting headed West in search of new forms of artistic expression. Their experiments with various western approaches, infused with traditional Chinese cultural spirit, opened a dynamic new chapter in the story of modern art.
China's rapid modernisation following the Cultural Revolution also led to radical new stylistic vocabularies and subjects: from the Political Pop and Cynical Realism paintings of Wang Guangyi and Zhang Xiaogang, to the finely-rendered realist paintings of Ai Xuan that meditate upon the landscapes and people of Tibet.
Others, like contemporary ink painter Li Huayi, have revitalised the spirit of traditional Chinese literati painting through experimental materials and Western conceptual approaches.
For each individual artist, Kwai Fung Hin has offered unreserved support in different forms.
Dedication to artists and art history
Exhibiting, collaborating and educating
Over three decades Kwai Fung Hin has organised more than 160 exhibitions honoring artists from a wide range of European and Asian countries.
Our curatorial strategy is based on a rigorous understanding of each artist's biography, creative philosophy and artistic development. Each project is executed with careful attention to concept design, exhibition installation and presentation, often involving the collaboration of top interior and lighting professionals.
We have a long history of supporting and collaborating with museums and institutions on large-scale retrospective exhibitions, to enhance the reach of our curatorial and educational programming.
Recent examples include:
- Contemporary Landscape: Li Huayi at Honolulu Museum of Art, 2019-20;
- Extended Figure: Art and Inspiration of Lalan at Asia Society Hong Kong Center, 2021; and
- Calligraphy Rhapsody – Retrospective Exhibition of Georges Mathieu at K11 Musea, 2021
These exhibitions are enriched by academic lectures and symposia to contextualise the impact of the artists and their work.
To broaden our curatorial and educational initiatives whilst partnering with curators, galleries, academics and institutions from around the world, we established Kwai Fung Salone in 2022.
Paying tribute to the artistic and literary gatherings (or 'salons') originating in 16th-century Italy, the Salone is a cross-cultural collaborative platform for art and cultural programming in Hong Kong that spotlights local talents as well as international masters across different artistic, literary and cultural disciplines.
With a firm belief in the value of quality art literature for connecting an artist with his audience, Kwai Fung Hin invests considerable resources in art book production, encouraging continued and engaging discourse around the oeuvres of its artists.
For such purposes, we established Kwai Fung Art Publishing House. We work with artists and their estates, academics, curators and critics to bring in-depth and authoritative research to readers, whilst collaborating with international publishers such as Flammarion and Rizzoli to ensure wider and systematic distribution of our publications.
Since 2006, we have published over 50 monographs and exhibition catalogues, including Zao Wou-Ki: 1935-2008 (2010), the most complete monograph available on the artist.
Kwai Fung Foundation, the non-profit arm of Kwai Fung Hin, was established in 2020 to build and manage the archives of outstanding Chinese modern and contemporary artists, and to ensure comprehensive public access to information and materials on their work.
The Foundation's milestones to date include launching the online catalogues raisonnés and archives of Chinese-French multidisciplinary artist Lalan and Chinese contemporary ink painter Li Huayi. The Foundation is happy to offer guidance and support on any research enquiries.
To support the development of Chinese contemporary art, in 2002 we established the Kwai Po Collection.
Asia's first dedicated publisher and international distributor of lithographs, the Kwai Po Collection was an original and innovative project. We worked closely with Chinese contemporary masters including Wu Guanzhong, Wang Guangyi and Zhang Xiaogang, with production supported by renowned long-established print studios in Paris. Our first artist proof ('AP') was acquired by France's Bibliothèque Nationale.
Serving the art market
Alongside its support of artists, Kwai Fung Hin Art Gallery provides services to private and corporate collectors in building and developing remarkable art collections of both aesthetic and academic value.
Our long-established global network of collectors, dealers, galleries, foundations and public institutions facilitates the sourcing of modern and contemporary masterpieces from around the world.
With our strong in-house research team and trusted expertise in assessing the academic and market value of an artwork, we are experienced in managing the acquisition and sale of artworks (from single pieces to entire collections) both privately and at auction, as well as advising on ancillary issues such as archiving and exhibition loans.
Serving our community
A commitment to education underpins the Kwai Fung Hin philosophy. Kwai Fung Foundation supports advanced level education in Hong Kong in the fields of art and culture (as well as technology, humanities and legal studies) through scholarships and other forms of donation.
Our milestones since the Foundation's inception include:
establishing the Kwai Fung Scholarship at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology;
establishing the Kwai Fung Foundation Award for Master of Arts in Art History Students at the University of Hong Kong's Faculty of Arts; and
donating to the Hong Kong Art History Project at the University of Hong Kong's School of Humanities.
FOUNDER - MS. CATHERINE KWAI
Born and raised in Hong Kong, Catherine Kwai has developed her passion for art and philosophy since childhood. After a successful 10-year career in the banking industry, she established Kwai Fung Culture & Communications in 1991.
Over three decades, her business has developed into four separate companies, each with its own direction and mission in art: Kwai Fung Hin Art Gallery, Kwai Fung Art Consultants, Kwai Po Collection and Kwai Fung Art Publishing House. In 2020, Catherine set up Kwai Fung Foundation for the advancement of education, research and intellectual exchange on Chinese modern and contemporary art in Hong Kong. This was followed by the establishment of Kwai Fung Salone in 2022, a cross-cultural collaborative platform for art and cultural programming in Hong Kong that spotlights local talents as well as international masters across different disciplines.
Aside from gallery exhibitions, Catherine has also collaborated with renowned museums and cultural institutes in China and Hong Kong, curating and co-organising many high-profile and influential exhibitions. Recent examples include curating Calligraphy Rhapsody - Retrospective Exhibition of Georges Mathieu organised by K11 Art Foundation (2021), and serving as consultant for Extended Figure: Art and Inspiration of Lalan at Asia Society Hong Kong Center (2021).
Catherine's contributions to art and cultural exchange between the East and the West have earned her the awards "Knight of the National Order of Merit" (Chevalière de l'Ordre National du Mérite) by the French Government in 2011 and "Knight of the Order of the Star of Italy" (Cavaliere dell'Ordine della Stella d'Italia) by the Italian Government in 2021.
Catherine is committed to charitable works and public service. Her recent engagements include:
• Chairperson of the Advisory Committee of the Indra and Harry Banga Gallery of City University of Hong Kong
• Member of the Board of Governors of City University of Hong Kong Foundation
• Member of the Court of City University of Hong Kong
• Member of the Court of The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
• Italy Government-appointed Member of the Chinese-Italian Cultural Society
• Advisor of Our Hong Kong Foundation
• Executive Vice-Chairman of the Federation of HK Jiangsu Community Organisation
• Member of the Board of Directors of the Association Culturelle France Hong Kong (2012-2019)
• Co-President of the Hong Kong Art Gallery Association (2019-2021)