With an ever-increasing number of new independent galleries opening in Hong Kong, and the first phase of its sprawling West Kowloon Cultural District expected to be completed within the next three years, contemporary art heavyweights continue to set up shop in the fast-paced city. Set to open on the heels of White Cube Hong Kong, which will launch with "London Pictures" by Gilbert and George on March 2, and joining the likes of Perrotin, Simon Lee and Platform China, Artinfo notes this week that the Shanghai-based collector and proponent of Chinese contemporary art, Pearl Lam (Jing Daily interview), will debut her new eponymous gallery in Hong Kong on May 15.
To be located in the landmark Pedder Building in Central -- already home to Gagosian, Ben Brown Fine Arts and Hanart TZ (and soon the American mass-market brand Abercrombie & Fitch) -- Lam's decision indicates to Artinfo that the collector is "confident that the harbor city is now rising to the cultural opportunity provided by its position as Asia’s art market hub."
In preparation for the opening of Pearl Lam Gallery, Artinfo adds that Lam is now, "by way of a soft opening, and to give the city a taste of the kind of work she is planning to show," presenting an exhibition of abstract ink work by Shanghai-born US-based artist Zheng Chongbin at the Pao Galleries in the Hong Kong Arts Centre. Opening on the eve of ARTHK12, which runs this year from May 16-20, Pearl Lam Gallery Hong Kong -- along with White Cube and others -- indicates Hong Kong's emergence as a regional art hub is gaining serious credibility.
However, perhaps anticipating future developments, Lam for one is hedging her bets by planning to open a gallery in Hong Kong's long-time commercial (and now cultural) rival, Singapore, in 2013.