Power 100

Most influential people in 2022 in the contemporary artworld


Chris Ho & John Tain

Curators - Director and Head of Research of Hong Kong’s Asia Art Archive

24 in 2022

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Courtesy Asia Art Archive (Tain); Courtesy Moving Image Studio (Ho)

After abandoning a search for new premises for Hong Kong’s Asia Art Archive – which Ho directs and at which Tain is head of research – the duo, together with AAA founder Claire Hsu, renovated the library, improving the space in which the public can browse 120,000 art-historical records. A very small selection of these were installed at Documenta in Kassel over the summer: footage relating to the postcolonial Faculty of Fine Arts in Vadodara, India, and to Womanifesto, a Thai feminist collective; and ephemera from performance-art festivals that emerged in East and Southeast Asia. Yet the real work of the archive is often more modest in scale, whether talks from AAA grantees on Punjab-era communist publications, the opening of Guangdong pioneer Huang Xiaopeng’s archives or a mobile library travelling from town to town in Nepal. The archive has fans too: this year it received $25,000 from the Hauser & Wirth Institute to process and digitise the papers of multifaceted Pakistani modernist Zahoor ul Akhlaq.

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