Neonsigns.hk is an online exhibition presented by the M+ museum from the West Kowloon Cultural District in Hong Kong. The website features an interactive map that crowdsources neon sign photos submitted by the public. The online exhibition also contains essays, video documentaries, photo galleries, and a timeline, telling an in-depth multimedia story about neon signs' history and development.
The site builds a database of neon signs from the public, which can reveal patterns about the neon's geographical distribution, and the M+ museum is using the site's tagging system for research in the long run. Concurrently, the online exhibition raises the awareness of one of the threatened features from Hong Kong's streetscapes.
Neonsigns.hk provides an opportunity for users to digitally discover the neon signs in the city of Hong Kong. The public can easily submit photos of the signs to the neon map via Instagram, which are then organized by their corresponding districts and categories for others to explore in different, meaningful ways. The public can experience the neon signs erected in the streets of Hong Kong and help to digitally archive them via the crowd-sourcing capability of neonsigns.hk. Through the multimedia content in the online exhibition, the public gets exposed to more in-depth knowledge and stories behind the neon signs in different visual and cultural contexts.
Neonsigns.hk has received attention from a wide range of news outlets locally and internationally. Covered from design and culturally focused online publications such as FastCoDesign and Hypebeast, to established channels such as CNN, the Wall Street Journal, and the Financial Times, the online exhibition digitally introduces neon signs from Hong Kong to the rest of the world.
Through the multimedia experiences, the online exhibition reintroduces the neon signs of Hong Kong in different contexts. Due to the advancements of technology, neon signs in the streets of Hong Kong are slowly disappearing, replaced by LED signs or multimedia displays. By raising the awareness and inducing the appreciation of these nostalgic glowing tubes, neonsigns.hk brings hope to find alternate roles for neon signs to live on as part of our culture.
The multimedia content on Neonsigns.hk are curated and contributed by professionals across the cultural facets. From renowned cinematographer and photographers to respected novelist and professors, the team provides rich content for the online exhibition in forms of artwork, essays, videos, audio walks, and image galleries.
The site has received over 4000 submissions from 21 March to 30 June 2014, ranging from younger users active on Instagram, to nostalgic photos from the older generation, and pictures by professional photographers. Neonsigns.hk has received attention from a wide range of news outlets locally and internationally. Covered from design and culturally focused online publications such as FastCoDesign and Hypebeast, to established channels such as CNN, the Wall Street Journal, and the Financial Times, the online exhibition digitally introduces neon signs from Hong Kong to the rest of the world.