One of the most vibrant neighbourhoods in Hong Kong, Old Town Central is bursting with creativity on every street corner. This area has everything from experimental stage performances held inside a repurposed depot, to world-class art exhibitions and edgy graffiti that graces the walls of small alleys.
Formerly the Police Married Quarters,now houses works by promising young artists and designers in Hong Kong. Not only will you find a fascinating line-up of creative studios and designer products here, but there are also exhibitions and workshops all year round, giving you insights into the local creative scene. What’s more, this creative space doubles as an art canvas as well — be sure to check out the 20 staircases here that have been decorated by groups of talented artists who were all inspired by tales of Hong Kong.
Situated amid the hustle and bustle of Central,distinguishes itself from the surrounding high-rises with a neoclassical exterior made of milky white and brown bricks. Since it inhabited part of the Old Dairy Farm Depot in 1984, the Fringe Club has been a celebrated exhibition and performance venue, and has helped introduce experimental works to the city’s art scene. Catch a host of poetry reading sessions, exhibitions plays and musical performances while you’re here — just check the events calendar ahead of time to see what's on.
Housed within this beautiful Beaux-Arts style structure and a Grade II historic building is a wonderful range of internationally renowned galleries including the likes of Gagosian and Lehmann Maupin. Spanning multiple floors,is the ideal destination for gallery-hopping and discovering works by some of the biggest names in the current global art scene, as well as up-and-comers making big waves.
This private art museum is a shining gem in the heart of Sheung Wan, especially for antiquities lovers. Spanning four-storeys, Liang Yi Museum collects and showcases rare and under-the-radar Chinese antique furniture, as well as European bejewelled clutches, compacts and powder boxes from luxury design brands such as Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels. Make sure to book an appointment if you want to peruse the museum’s fascinating relics.
This newly opened 24-storey vertical art space is currently home to eight world-class galleries and auction houses including David Zwirner, Hauser & Wirth, Tang Contemporary Art, as well as Hong Kong’s very own Pearl Lam Galleries. But what sets H Queen’s apart from other art spaces in the city is its massive venues. Expect an elevated art-viewing experience at these multi-floor galleries and plenty of large-scale installations that wouldn’t fit in other locations.
It‘s hard to miss the massive portrait of a man surrounded by rising bubbles on the slopes of Cochrane Street. Set against the black mosaic tiles of Lush Spa, Hong Kong-based French muralist Elsa Jean de Dieu has injected her signature joy and lightness to the bustling streets of Soho. The mural is also one of many born out of the HK Walls 2018 project.
A street art pioneer from China, SENK has decorated the wall of an unassuming staircase that is George’s Lane as part of the HK Walls Festival in 2018. Step in between the residential buildings of Staunton Street and you’ll be greeted by SENK’s striking and vibrant mural done in his signature old-school graffiti lettering-style. It certainly adds a splash of colour to an otherwise quiet back alley
Danish urban contemporary artist Christian Storm combines geometric elements and Chinese culture in this eye-catching mural of two giant koi fish swimming. Navigate past the many historic antique shops and art galleries to admire how Storm is able to transform a simple blank wall into a vertical body of water.
This hidden mural painting is done by renowned British street artist Dan Kitchener in his self-described urban impressionism-style. Viewers have to peek in between two units to be rewarded with a romantic depiction of a rainy New York evening in soft neon lighting, tucked away in this narrow alley.
Without a doubt the most photographed example of street art in Hong Kong, local graffiti artist Alex Croft’s colourful mural of old townhouses shines a light on the city’s iconic italic tenement buildings. Boasting a vibrant blue background, this piece of street art is a vibrant and colourful window into the past.
Japanese celebrity Shingo Katori has recently joined the fray of the Hong Kong street art scene to present a vibrant, red painting underneath one section of the Central–Mid-Levels escalator. The choice of colour, the Bauhinia motifs and the miniature skyline are all in tribute to Hong Kong. Take a step back and you’ll find that together, these elements form an image of a dragon.
Nothing screams star power like the iconic figures of Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn and Charlie Chaplin. Covering the façade of this Hollywood Road hotel, the screen legends, accompanied by Frank Sinatra, are painted in pop art-like style in front of imagery of the Hong Kong skyline. Here’s your chance to get a selfie with these Hollywood greats.
Paying tribute to the one and only Bruce Lee, South Korean graffiti artist Xeva used his signature mosaic technique to create this large mural, which captures the likeness of the martial arts superstar. Strike a jeet kune do pose next to the graffiti at this staircase for the perfect Hong Kong snapshot.
Almost like a scene from the movie, Inception, Spanish illustrator Cinta Vidal Agulló has created a mind-bending piece featuring inverted architecture and gravity-defying grey buildings. Taking over the facade of Italian bar Stazione Novella, Agulló invites passersby to take a pause and re-examine reality on this steep slope of Aberdeen Street.
Discover more wonderful street art Hong Kong has to offer and venture out towards Sai Ying Pun’s, where local and international artists have turned the building walls of Ki Ling Lane and Chung Ching Street into a kaleidoscopic canvas.
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