Hong Kong: 24 Nov 2017: Mexican artist Jaime Ruiz has created an original 6 x 5 metre mural today at the iconic Peak Tower, one of Hong Kong’s most popular tourist attractions, to raise awareness about unsustainable consumption of seafood products in South China.
In the mural, Ruiz depicts two critically endangered marine species that are native to Mexico: the totoaba, a large fish, which is the target of illegal fishing as a result of Chinese demand for its high-value fish-maw; and secondly the vaquita, a small porpoise, which is nearing extinction at a rapid pace due to its entrapment in nets used to illegally fish totoaba. The mural also references the Golden Coin Turtle, a critically endangered species native to Hong Kong, the last remaining city it can be found in the wild. Conservation initiatives are undertaken for this species at the Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Gardens, with the support of the Agriculture, Fisheries & Conservation Department (AFCD) of the Hong Kong Government.
The Consul General of Mexico in Hong Kong, Damian Martinez, recognized the valuable support of many organizations in Hong Kong towards this project, particularly that of The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels, Limited (owner and operator of The Peninsula Hotels, The Peak Complex, and The Repulse Bay), which will undoubtedly help raise awareness about this important issue. “The Peak Tower is an iconic landmark in Hong Kong that attracts thousands of visitors each day. If only a fraction of these visitors can receive our message, we firmly believe change will happen,” said Martinez.
The Consulate General of Mexico has advocated in Hong Kong to help save the two marine species depicted by the artist in the mural. The Government of Mexico has made large-scale efforts to counter the illegal fishing and trafficking of totoaba in the Gulf of California, while enhancing its cooperation with international partners such as China and the Hong Kong authorities. It has also sought to avoid the extinction of the vaquita porpoise through a private-public coalition called Vaquita CPR (vaquitacpr.org).
“The sustainability of our oceans and the survival of marine life depends on the choices we make as consumers. We must change our personal and social habits,” said Martinez.
“On behalf of The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels, Limited, we are delighted to support this worthy cause and congratulate the Mexican Consulate on their steadfast efforts to raise awareness of critically endangered marine species. As part of our group sustainability efforts, we champion public art and collaborate with local artists around the world, and we work with several NGOs including WWF and Tenghoi to help identify and serve responsibly sourced seafood in our restaurants, as much as possible. This original mural project by Jaime Ruiz, which coincides with Hong Kong Art Week, offers an ideal opportunity to bring together our group’s art and sustainability objectives. We welcome visitors to view the mural at The Peak Tower over the next few months,” said Mr Martyn Sawyer, Group Director, Properties at The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels.
The mural painting is located next to the upper entrance of the Peak Tram station at the Peak Tower, and will be available to view from Thursday, November 23, 2017.
About the artist:
Jaime Ruiz was born in Oaxaca, México, in 1985. With studies in graphic design and visual arts, Jaime Ruiz deals with social issues such as the transition from rural to urban, the social and community based organization of work, citizen participation, urban expressions, cultural identity, and the long-lasting legacy of colonialism. He is also a university professor in Mexico and collaborates with different art networks and experimentation projects with various artistic subjects.
For further information, please contact:
The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels
Director, Corporate Affairs
Tel: +852 2840 7152
Mobile +852 6718 8219
Website: www.hshgroup.com www.peninsula.com
Manager, Corporate Affairs
Tel: +852 2840 7743
Mobile: +852 9611 0502
The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels, Limited (HSH)
Incorporated in 1866 and listed on The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong (00045), HSH is the holding company of a Group which is engaged in the ownership, development and management of prestigious hotel, commercial and residential properties in key locations in Asia, the United States and Europe, as well as the provision of transport, club management and other services. The Peninsula Hotels portfolio comprises The Peninsula Hong Kong, The Peninsula Shanghai, The Peninsula Beijing, The Peninsula Tokyo, The Peninsula Bangkok, The Peninsula Manila, The Peninsula New York, The Peninsula Chicago, The Peninsula Beverly Hills, and The Peninsula Paris. Projects under development include The Peninsula London, The Peninsula Yangon and The Peninsula Istanbul. The property portfolio of the Group includes The Repulse Bay Complex, The Peak Tower and St. John’s Building in Hong Kong; The Landmark in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; 1-5 Grosvenor Place in London, UK, and 21 avenue Kléber in Paris, France. The clubs and services portfolio of the Group includes The Peak Tram in Hong Kong; Thai Country Club in Bangkok, Thailand; Quail Lodge & Golf Club in Carmel, California; Peninsula Clubs and Consultancy Services which includes The Hong Kong Club, The Hong Kong Bankers’ Club and Butterfields; Peninsula Merchandising, and Tai Pan Laundry in Hong Kong.