New Website & The Archive Project

Para Site is delighted to launch our new website (www.para-site.art), designed by Wkshps. Revamping the institution’s digital look and making it more user-friendly, the new site provides improved and much expanded visual content (particularly in relation to historical exhibitions and programmes), including bi-lingual descriptions of every exhibition and programme implemented at Para Site since 1996. This substantial new material is the result of an ongoing Archive Project, that recuperates, organises, and shares the materials produced throughout the history of the institution. Unfolding through its more than 250 exhibitions in Hong Kong, dozens of publications, countless public programmes, residencies, and numerous exhibitions organised around the world, it reveals Para Site‘s unique contribution to shaping the local and international context since its inception. The results of the research for the years 1996-1998 are already fully available on the new site and a major upload of materials from subsequent years will be online by September, making this extensive and coherent overview of Para Site’s historical programming readily accessible to artists, curators, and researchers, both locally and internationally.

The Archive Project consists of several still ongoing actions: restructuring Para Site’s archives (photographs, VHS & cassette tapes, ephemera, internal documents and minutes, etc); digitising, annotating, and translating original materials; and uploading and editing all relevant images and materials online. The next phase will also focus on producing new interviews and collecting further materials from the personal archives of a large number of artists, critics, curators, former staff and collaborators from the past 23 years. The fragile and ephemeral nature of some of the early archival materials underscores the urgent need for digitisation, both to preserve and to make these materials more widely accessible.

As Para Site is approaching its 25th anniversary, we are engaging in a broad process of reflection, revisiting the past quarter century of our institutional history, and its deeply interwoven relationship with the history of the Hong Kong art scene, which has also seen its most lively quarter century during this period. Para Site’s archives contain a unique overview of the development of contemporary art within Hong Kong since 1996. Para Site’s 25th anniversary, in 2021, will also see the opening of a new major museum in our city, and we are very much interested in laying the groundwork for collectively writing the history of the next 25 years, together with the entire arts community of Hong Kong.

We also warmly invite individuals and organisations with archival materials related to Para Site, including but not limited to exhibition catalogues, videos, and other ephemera to contact us at archive@para-site.art in order for them to be included in this extensive digital archive.

The Archive Project is financially supported by the Project Grant of the Hong Kong Arts Development Council. The Hong Kong Arts Development Council fully supports freedom of artistic expression. The views and opinions expressed in this project do not represent the stand of the Council.

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