Feng shui is deeply rooted in Hong Kong’s culture, affecting aspects of life from the architecture of our iconic buildings to deeper aspects of everyday life, but our collective knowledge of positioning physical objects with nature is beginning to fade. So we ask—do you know your feng shui?
Whether you are an expert or a complete noob, to help us all improve our understanding of the culture, Olivia Wiltshire, an executive at a digital marketing agency in London, created a feng shui infographic highlighting the philosophy’s most important elements. We spoke with her about her methodology behind creating the piece.
Wiltshire and her company created this infographic on behalf of their client, Hotel Club. They decided on the topic of feng shui because they felt it was a concept people were aware of but didn’t truly understand—especially in the West.
“We wanted to bring to light feng shui facts that are less widely known, that emphasise that feng shui isn’t just about the positioning of your furniture as some may assume, but rather about many aspects of everyday life over in the East,” Wiltshire explained.
Perhaps the most well-known respect of feng shui that the infographic demonstrates is the incorporation of it in our local architecture. The graphic gives us several examples of buildings with modified designs to balance the poor feng shui from buildings around the city.
“HSBC considered Bank of China’s tower, which points toward its headquarters, too aggressive due to the Bank of China’s sharp edges. As a result, HSBC constructed two cannons on its roof to counteract negative energy. Following feng shui expert consultation, there are also two bronze lions outside the building. These lions are designed to protect the money within and are deemed to be good luck by locals,” Wiltshire told Localiiz.
Whilst this example is very specific, there are many other buildings and landmarks in Hong Kong that have incorporated feng shui into their design for their own auspicious reasoning. These include Hong Kong Disneyland’s front gate and The Repulse Bay.
“It’s not just famous landmarks that take heed to expert advice, though. Some business tycoons go to the extent of realigning their homes with feng shui principles which can be a costly venture,” Wiltshire said. After all, the infographic does state that the average senior feng shui consultant earns $16,000 an hour!
Despite the money in feng shui consultation, Wiltshire said the culture is well-respected and deserves attention. “Ultimately, feng shui is a philosophy that I think falls victim to myths and assumptions. In creating this infographic and presenting a vast array of facts and true case studies, I think we bring to life a true representation of what this ancient philosophy is about and to what extent it really affects daily life in Hong Kong and China. I do think it is important that the people of Hong Kong develop an understanding of feng shui simply because it’s omnipresent and hugely influential in more ways than people may realise, this philosophy is basically a driving force towards many decisions made in Hong Kong and that should be known.”