Austrians in Hong Kong

Austrians in Hong Kong

‘Austrians in Hong Kong’ an oral history project encompassing portraits of Austrians who have lived in Hong Kong for a certain time, beginning with those who came in the late 1950ies and early 60ies. It is on the one hand about documenting the life and work of Austrians as well as their contribution to the development of the city. It is on the other hand a quite unique – Austrian – perspectives on events and developments of Hong Kong in the past decades. The interviews while documenting the lives of Austrians in Hong Kong and how they integrated into Hong Kong society, will constitute an important source of information for Hong Kong's contemporary history through the perspective of Austrians. The interviews – conducted in English - will be recorded on video and posted on a dedicated youtube channel.

  1. Henry Steiner (13 Feb 2018)
  2. Lothar Wesemann (29 Mar 2018)


Known as the father of Hong Kong design, Henry Steiner was born in Vienna and with the National Socialists' rise to power fled to and raised in New York. He was educated at Yale and at the Sorbonne. Steiner's experience and reputation are international, he is best known for designing the HSBC corporate identity and logo, as well as several series of banknotes for Standard Chartered Bank. Steiner was named World Master by Japan's Idea magazine, and one of Icograda's Masters of the 20th Century. He received the Governor's Award for Hong Kong Design in 1970; and in 2012, Steiner won the Asian Design Lifetime Achievement Award from the Hong Kong Design Centre. In 2006, Steiner received the Decoration of Merit in Gold of the Republic of Austria for design achievement and nearly 10 years later he got awarded the honorary title of Professor by the Federal President of Austria.

Founded in 1927, designaustria is Europe's third oldest design organisation with currently more than 1,300 members from various backgrounds. The organisation aims to raise awareness for design through exhibitions, teaching programmes, publications, and public relations activities, it promotes the benefits of design for society and the economy. design|er|leben is a book series published by designaustria, the series is dedicated to the generation of Austrian designers who shaped the design in the 20th century and beyond. In collaboration with the Hong Kong Design Institute (HKDI) the #18 volume of design|er|leben is dedicated to Professor Henry Steiner.