Hong Kong Through the Lens of John Thomson

15 November 2018 - 30 April 2019

Library Opening Hours - http://www.lib.cuhk.edu.hk/

Exhibition Area, G/F, University Library


3943 7305 or email: spc@lib.cuhk.edu.hk

Event Details:

This is an exhibition devoted to the images of Hong Kong taken by John Thomson (1837-1921), a pioneering Scottish photographer, geographer, and traveler.

Born in Edinburgh in June 1837, after his schooling Thomson worked for an optical and scientific instrument maker. He first travelled Asia in 1862, and undertook numerous journeys photographing countries including Siam, Cambodia, Vietnam and many areas in China over the next 10 years. In 1868, he established a studio in Hong Kong at Commercial Bank Building, Queen’s Road Central. He photographed Hong Kong’s landscapes, buildings, harbor and people. His excellent work in China and other Asian countries established him as a pioneer of photo-journalism and one of the most influential photographers of his time.

His collection of 700 glass plates travelled back with him to Britain in 1872 and since 1921 has been housed and preserved at the Wellcome Library, London. This exhibition includes fourteen images from the Wellcome Library’s collection and twelve colour images taken by the Photographic Heritage Foundation that commissioned photographs of John Thomson’s photo sites in 2015. The exhibition also features the Chinese University of Hong Kong Library’s collection of old photographs of Hong Kong. It is hoped that through this exhibition, the audience can better understand Hong Kong’s past and present.

Event Photo 1