Edward Stokes speaking to the Foreign Correspondents Club in 2010, at the book launch for Hong Kong Nature Landscapes. The Foundation also publishes books on modern urban settings and nature landscapes.
‘Hong Kong As It Was, published by The Photographic Heritage Foundation, is an outstanding accomplishment. The book is scholarly, accessible and beautifully printed. It presents images of great historical and cultural interest, combining elegance with utility. The Foundation’s plans for a series of photographic compilations demonstrate a profound commitment to Asia. The contextualization embedded in the Foundation’s publications is of the greatest value.’
Dr Raymond Lum, Librarian for the Western Languages Collection, Harvard-Yenching Library, Harvard University (1976 – 2014)
At the heart of the Foundation’s objectives is our book publishing programme. Digital archives and publication of course play an important role. But we believe that books, well designed and produced, with narratives informed by rigorous research, have the greatest impact and the most lasting cultural value. The Foundation’s previous publications, such as Hedda Morrison’s Hong Kong (re-published as Hong Kong As It Was) and Lee Fook Chee’s Hong Kong, published with generous funding support from The Hong Kong Jockey Club and Dr Charles Yeung, respectively, are recognized as landmarks of photographic publishing – and as valuable contributions to local and regional social history.
Bedrock to the Foundation’s book publishing plans is the knowledge we have garnered, over many years, of little-known and completely unknown photo collections. These all await the publication that they richly deserve.
The Foundation’s book publishing methods have been honed from experience and advice given by publishing experts: academic publishers, libraries and archives, and our distributing co-publishers. In essence the Foundation covers, from the generous support provided by our project donors, the high upfront costs of pioneering photo collections, and then the research, writing, design and imaging of each book. This allows the final books to be printed – and sold to our distributors – at much lower costs than otherwise. In turn, this allows our books, despite their high quality, to be affordable in bookshops. And it allows the Foundation to donate copies of every book to all local secondary schools, an important part of our mission.
Whenever possible, the Foundation co-publishes its books with the institution that holds that book’s photographs, for scholarly credibility and mutual recognition. The Foundation’s coming publications are described at PLANNED BOOKS.