Island_Peninsula - Fieldwork Log Book on Fernperson Hongkongensis

Translated title of the contribution: 「島與半島」之草生人類:「香港蕨人」田野調查紀錄

Hoi-wood Howard Chang (Editor), Kwok-kin So (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Fernperson hongkongensis are among the easiest types of plantbeings to identify. Their living spaces and behavioral patterns follow these four core values of life in Hong Kong:

1) Land of Glamour: As a city founded by investors, merchants, immigrants, and refugees, Hong Kong’s love of glamour might have grown its roots from its ancestors’ quest for materialistic opulence. Luxury, as a symbol of economic success and social status, sets the theme for the built environment of Hong Kong, and brands real estate as desirable commodities.

2) Land of Efficiency: Hong Kong people commonly attribute the city’s success to its inhabitants near-religious pursuit of efficiency, especially in the domain of economic output. Hong Kong’s focus on efficiency of time and space puts it in one of the world’s top spots in terms of highest GDP per square meter of territory.

3) Land of Orderliness: Although the city’s inhabitants live, work, and move among each other in a high density environment every day, , the city still operates in an amazingly orderly fashion. Millions commute daily across the city, passing through turnstiles of MTR stations at peak hours, yet crowd safety has never been an issue. Hong Kong has developed its own mode of discipline and order.

4) Land of Constant Change: Hong Kong was founded as a colony of borrowed time, with its sovereignty transitioned between nations more than once. Living in a melting pot of Western and Eastern cultures, Hong Kong people have become highly adaptable to change. Flexibility and adaptability are the virtuous keys to survival. The city’s inhabitants keep inventing and reinventing their ways of life with the forever shifting landscape.

At the exhibition I studied the behavioral patterns of the 14 naturally occurring mutations of Fernperson hongkongensis, examined their interactions with their habitat, and identified the core value of each colony to confirm they were in fact Fernpersons of the hongkongensis type. Interestingly, the core value most dominant in each mutation all coincided with the core values as designed by the curators of the exhibition. This indeed provided solid evidence for my hypothesis that fernperson culture is heavily influenced by the architectural landscape they inhibit, but I could not help suspecting that there might be a secret supporter of my theory hiding among the curators. It seems to me that this supporter is using the architecture exhibition as a laboratory to cultivate fernpersons. Regardless of the supporter’s existence, a comparative study of the exhibition and the fernperson colonies would yielded important insight. I am sure I will be able to gain a better understanding of the typical patterns of behavior found among these Hongkongers, how these behaviors allowed them to adapt to their unique habitat, as well as exactly how Fernperson hongkongensis came into being.
Translated title of the contribution「島與半島」之草生人類:「香港蕨人」田野調查紀錄
Original languageMultiple languages
Number of pages104
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2019


  • Architecture
  • Literature


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