Architect Rocco Yim has been embroiled in the Hong Kong Palace Museum controversy after it was revealed that he was awarded the project without going through the usual tender process.
Critics have slammed the appointment of Mr Yim before the project was officially announced by Hong Kong Chief Secretary Carrie Lam last month.
Mrs Lam defended Mr Yim's appointment, which she said was duly approved by the board of West Kowloon Cultural District Authority.
She said Mr Yim has already participated in efforts to create the conceptual design of the West Kowloon Cultural District.
Mr Yim was the design architect of the Guangdong Museum and the Yunnan Museum. The museums opened in 2010 and 2015 respectively. He was also the lead architect for the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government Headquarters in Admiralty.
Citing the complexity of the museum project, Mrs Lam said it should be handled by an experienced local architect with a proven track record in delivering Chinese art museums of a similar nature and scale.
An award-winning architect, Mr Yim was born and educated in Hong Kong.
After graduating from the University of Hong Kong, he worked at British architectural firm Spence Robinson for two years before going on to start his own practice in 1979.
In 1982, he co-founded Rocco Design Architects Limited. The Hong Kong-based firm has five directors and about 170 staff, and also has offices in mainland China.
Mr Yim's works have received honours in Hong Kong and on the international stage. Guangdong Museum won The Hong Kong Institute of Architects Medal of the Year Outside Hong Kong while the Yunnan Museum clinched First Prize in the International Invited Competition.