Summer Institute #4: The Future after the Pandemic

Summer Institute #4: The Future after the Pandemic

Date & Time

13 - 24 Oct, 2021 Please refer to Programme Timetable


Please refer to Programme Timetable


$500 (Seminars); Free (Public lecture)


Summer Institute is a two-week programme of tertiary student seminars and distinguished public lectures focusing on students from Hong Kong and Asia. Apply now for a unique chance to work closely with some of the most important art theorists and thinkers, curators, artists, and philosophers in the world.

As COVID-19 swept the globe, we must admit that so much philosophy we are familiar with has failed the pandemic’s test. There is an urgency for an alternative, and change is necessary. What are successful responses or inspirations for thought in the post-pandemic world?  Summer Institute #4: The Future after the Pandemic invites seven scholars to explore opportunities and challenges to art in relation to the post-pandemic future, environmental issues, new relations between art and technology, new kinship, and the adoption of alternative approaches in teaching and knowledge-making.

Application Deadline: 3 October 2021

Tuition cost: $500 HKD including 8 seminars, 1 public lecture and a certificate of completion. Tuition subsidies are available on a case by case basis.

Instructions for registration:
- All seminars and public lectures will be conducted in English; simultaneous interpretation from English to Cantonese will be provided for the public lecture.
- Please register online by filling out the form; selected candidates will be contacted.
- Please make sure that you can physically participate in all seminars and the public lecture, including the closing event.

The events will adhere to the latest health and safety regulations and enforce social distancing measures. If you have any questions, please email to

This project is conceived and organised by Veronica Wong, and coordinated by David Chan and Kylie Tung.

Programme Timetable








Seminar with Thomas Moynihan

From History's End to History's Beginning: How the Future Has Grown Throughout the Past

Room 206, Block 03, Tai Kwun



Seminar with Amy Cheung

Thought Experiments | Sculptors of a New Earth

Room 206, Block 03, Tai Kwun



Seminar with Nadim Abbas

(With special guest Emily Verla Bovino)

Shek O and the Miniature:  A Two-Part Case Study

Pt. 1-Shek O Bus Terminus

Room 206, Block 03, Tai Kwun



Seminar with Izumi Nakayama

Technology, Kinship, and Emotion in a (not yet) Post-Pandemic World

Room 206, Block 03, Tai Kwun 



Seminar with Thomas Moynihan

From History's End to History's Beginning: How the Future Has Grown Throughout the Past

Room 206, Block 03, Tai Kwun



Public Lecture: Tai Kwun Conversations x Summer Institute #4

A Dialogue on Art and Cosmotechnics between Yuk Hui and Hans Ulrich Obrist

JC Cube, Tai Kwun 




Seminar with Yuk Hui

Prolegomena to Planetary Thinking

Room 206, Block 03, Tai Kwun



Seminar with Nadim Abbas

Shek O and the Miniature:  A Two-Part Case Study

Pt. 2-Shek O Obstacle Golf Course

Shek O

Public Lecture

Tai Kwun Conversation invites the philosopher Yuk Hui, whose theoretical enquiries revolve around the question of technology, together with the renowned curator and artistic director of Serpentine Galleries, Hans Ulrich Obrist, to an engaging dialogue on the occasion of the launch of Yuk Hui’s latest book Art and Cosmotechnics (University of Minnesota Press, 2021).

Hui and Obrist have, over a number of years, engaged in a series of dialogues that took place in Berlin, New York, London, and Hong Kong, which focused on Hui’s work as well as their common interest in Jean-François Lyotard’s 1985 exhibition Les Immatériaux. In his latest book Art and Cosmotechnics, Hui charts a course through Greek tragedy, the logic of cybernetics, and the aesthetics of Chinese landscape painting, and addresses the challenge to art and philosophy occasioned by contemporary technological transformations. He poses the question: How might a renewed understanding of the varieties of experience of art be realised in face of the prevailing discourses around artificial intelligence and robotics? Departing from Hegel’s thesis on the end of art and Heidegger’s assertion of the end of philosophy, Hui outlines an unfamiliar trajectory of thought to arrive at a new relation between art and technology. In this dialogue, Obrist and Hui will touch upon various subjects in the book and beyond.

This talk is a crossover event of Tai Kwun Conversations and Summer Institute #4. Tai Kwun Conversations is a monthly event that brings together brilliant minds from the fields of contemporary art, architecture, heritage, among many others. Join us to discover new artistic exchange and outstanding practices in heritage conservation. 

This public lecture will be conducted in English, with English to Cantonese simultaneous interpretation.

Learn More

Artist Bio

Nadim Abbas
Emily Verla Bovino (Online)
Amy Cheung
Yuk Hui
Thomas Moynihan(Online)
Izumi Nakayama
Hans Ulrich Obrist (Public Lecture Special Guest,Online)

Nadim Abbas examines the mercurial properties of images and their ambiguous relationship to reality.  This has culminated in the construction of complex set pieces, where objects disappear into their own semblance and bodies succumb to the seduction of space.

Previous exhibitions include: Participation Mystique (McaM, Shanghai), Phantom Plane (Tai Kwun, HK), Poor Toy (VITRINE, Basel), Proregress (12th Shanghai Biennale), Interval in Space (OSAGE, HK) Blue Noon (Last Tango, Zurich), CloudsForests (7th Moscow International Biennale of Contemporary Art), Camoufleur (VITRINE, London), Chimera (Antenna Space, Shanghai), The Last Vehicle (UCCA, Beijing), 2015 Triennial: Surround Audience (New Museum, New York), Unseen Existence (HK Arts Centre), Going, going, until I meet the tide (2014 Busan Biennale), The Part In The Story Where A Part Becomes A Part Of Something Else (Kunstinstituut Melly, Rotterdam), Tetraphilia (Third Floor Hermés, Singapore).

Emily Verla Bovino is an art historian, artist, and writer with a background in urban studies and ethnographic methods. She received her PhD in Art History, Theory and Criticism from the University of California, San Diego where she was a grantee of the University of California Institute for Research in the Arts. In Hong Kong, she started the curatorial initiative Art Now! (2018-2020) at SCAD Hong Kong (the former North Kowloon Magistracy) where she taught art history, architectural history, and visual culture. In 2021, she was awarded the M+/Design Trust Research Fellowship for a project on miniature and the Research Grants Council Postdoctoral Fellowship for research on curating in the city. Her writing has appeared in Ocula, Mousse, Pin Up, Frieze, Spike Art Quarterly, Architectural Review, Art Margins Online, Art Papers and and her research has been published in the Journal of Chinese Contemporary Art and Museum Anthropology. As an artist, she has presented work with soundpocket (Hong Kong), SOMA (Mexico City), Fieldwork: Marfa (Texas), Futura (Czech Republic), Casco Office for Art, Design and Theory (Utrecht), Altar Projects (San Francisco), the Gulf Labor Coalition (New York), the & Now Festival of New Writing (San Diego), Robert Walser Zentrum (Bern), Kunstraum Oktagon (Bern), Viafarini (Milan), ETC galerie (Czech Republic) and ApexArt (New York), among others.

Amy Cheung is a conceptual artist who had previously taught forensic architecture in the department of architecture at the University of Hong Kong, and creative workshop in the department of fine art at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. She was selected as Beck’s New Contemporaries in the UK and was a UNESCO-Aschberg Laureate, awarded by UNESCO’s International Fund for the Promotion of Culture in 2004. She represented Hong Kong in the 52th Venice Biennale, and received the Outstanding Young Artist Award (Visual Arts) from the Hong Kong Arts Development Council and the Lee Hysan Foundation Fellowship from the Asian Cultural Council.

She has exhibited in over 40 exhibitions locally and abroad since 1997. Notable projects include 72 hours sound and vision made in HK from 30 June to 2 July 1997, where she blindfolded herself for 3 days guarded only by audio-visual description of others to help her “witness” the political transition; Ashes Unto Pearls, a sound installation with 188 speakers simultaneously broadcasting random citizens’ ultimate questions; Face Machine, a robotic installation with a mechanical arm testing the faces of the elderly and their haunting memories on and off a faceless infant body; Toy Tank, an interactive shooting sculpture made virtually to destroy all artworks in the exhibition; $ on China, a fung shui project to materialise a “dollar” form building on a “China” shaped island to ensure business prosperity; Hankie Bank, an immersive performance of banking that enabled transaction of anything valuable, except money.

Yuk Hui is a philosopher working on the question of technology. He wrote his doctoral thesis under the French philosopher Bernard Stiegler at Goldsmiths College in London and obtained his Habilitation in philosophy from Leuphana University in Germany. Hui is author of several monographs that have been translated into a dozen languages, including On the Existence of Digital Objects (University of Minnesota Press, 2016), The Question Concerning Technology in China: An Essay in Cosmotechnics (Urbanomic, 2016), Recursivity and Contingency (Rowman & Littlefield, 2019), and Art and Cosmotechnics (University of Minnesota Press, 2021). Hui is co-editor of 30 Years after Les Immatériaux: Art, Science and Theory (Meson, 2015) and editor of Philosophy after Automation (Philosophy Today, Vol.65. No.2, 2021), among others. Since 2014, Hui has been the initiator and convenor of the Research Network for Philosophy and Technology and currently sits as a juror of the Berggruen Prize for Philosophy and Culture. He currently teaches at the City University of Hong Kong.

Thomas Moynihan is a UK-based writer. He is a research fellow at the Forethought Foundation; a visiting research associate in history at St Benet’s College, Oxford University; and works with Oxford University’s Future of Humanity Institute. His research looks at the historical development of ideas surrounding human extinction, existential risk, and the long-term potential of our species. Through his writings, he aims to tell the story of how—across the ages—people have woken up to the vastness of humanity’s potential in step with learning about its sheer fragility.

Thomas’s work has been supported by the Berkeley Existential Risk Initiative and the Long-Term Future Fund; he has been interviewed on CBC Radio, BBC Radio 4, and appeared on various podcasts such as 80,000 Hours and Hear This Idea; his writings have been featured in outlets such as The New Scientist, Aeon, The Conversation, The Guardian, The Independent, Salon, MIT Press Reader, Vice, and Tank Magazine.

Currently, he is working on a book exploring why concern for the far future—and our species’ vast potential—has emerged only relatively recently when considering the entire sweep of past human thinking…

Izumi Nakayama is Research Officer/Fellow at the Hong Kong Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Hong Kong. Her research interests focus on historical and contemporary notions of body, gender, technology, and ecology in Japan and East Asia, with ongoing projects on menstruation and labour science. She teaches on new reproductive technologies and its bioethical debates, and is currently exploring issues of biohacking, technologies of time and aging, and the relationships between ecology, non-humans, emotions, and the senses. She is on the editorial board of East Asian Science, Technology and Society: An International Journal, and a collaborator on international projects on East Asian soy sauce, everyday technologies, and the Greater Bay Area.

Hans Ulrich Obrist (b. 1968, Zürich, Switzerland) is Artistic Director of the Serpentine Galleries in London. Prior to this, he was Curator of the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris. Since his first show World Soup (The Kitchen Show) in 1991 he has curated more than 350 exhibitions. Most notable amongst these are the Do It series (1993–), Take Me (I'm Yours) in London (1995), Paris (2015) New York (2016), and Milan (2017); and the Swiss Pavilion at the 14th International Architecture Biennale in Venice (2014). Obrist has also co-curated the Cities on The Move series (1996–2000), Laboratorium (1999); the operatic group exhibition Il Tempo del Postino in Manchester (2007) and Basel (2009), and The 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 Rooms series (2011–2015). Obrist's recent shows include IT'S URGENT at LUMA Arles (2019-2021), and Enzo Mari at Triennale Milano (2020). The Handwriting Project, which protests the disappearance of handwriting in the digital age, has been taking place on Instagram since 2013 (@hansulrichobrist).

Photo Courtesy of Koo Jeong A, Nov 2020