Before heading over to Hong Kong, I did a little research on the street art scene and reached out to Stephen over at Longzijun to find out more about where I could find any good art areas to check out. The bad news? Stephen said I probably wasn’t going to find the mural-type street art works that I prefer and that the Hong Kong street art scene tends to be more graffiti-writing and paste-ups.
The good news? He did tell me that HKwalls was happening right at the tail end of my trip so I was quite happy to pop by the Sheung Wan area to check it out, and I am immensely glad I did!
Sheung Wan can probably be described as a gentrifying hipster area, and HKwalls – a street art festival in its 2nd year invited various street artists from local and international circles to take over many of the walls in this neighbourhood and beautify them.
The artists mostly painted over 14th and 15th March – I was there on both afternoons watching them at work, so one thing a little different from my usual street art hunting is that I actually got to see the artists at work and watch the artworks progress, instead of just seeing the final art pieces. It’s amazing how much the artwork can evolve over just one day! Here are a couple of the works in progress that I caught. You can head over to HKwalls Facebook page to see how the actual final works turned out – they also painted at Stanley Market so if you’re headed to that area, maybe check it out!
I also spotted other older street art and graffiti works in the area as well alongside the HKwalls works, I haven’t been able to identify all the works, but here’s where you might see some of these works! Scroll down right to the bottom for the Google Map!
TAI ON TERRACE / PO HING FONG LANE
I suggest starting from the top along Caine Road and then climbing down the stairs of Upper Station Street. Tai On Terrace is on the left as you descend – explore the walls around those blocks and then head down to Po Hing Fong Street and walk along the side of Blake Gardens back to the bottom of the stairs at Upper Station Street.
HKwalls had a special gallery set up in an empty space at Tai On Terrace which had works by several of the artists for HKwalls on sale, I took a gander but nothing in particular caught my eye…
BETWEEN TAI PING SHAN STREET AND HOLLYWOOD STREET
On the opposite side of Blake Garden lies the hipster Tai Ping Shan Street – you can find several works along this street and on the many perpendicular roads and back alleys that line it. Most of the action was happening in the alleyway between Sai Street and Upper Station Street. A mix of cute little shops, artsy type shops as well as eateries around here – a nice place to chill out in the afternoon or evening.
Tai Ping Shan Street
Upper Station Street
Alleyway between Upper Station Street and Sai Street
Hollywood Street has a whole bunch of art and antique shops along it. Take a walk all the way up it from the Tai Ping Shan Road area towards Aberdeen Street where you can pop into the revitalised PMQ (Police Married Quarters) which is an uber hipster creative hub these days with lots of very cool shops. Pop into the various alleyways along the way to discover some surprises within!
Tank Lane stairway between Square Street and Hollywood Street
BELOW HOLLYWOOD STREET
I turned down Shin Hing Street and walked towards Gough Street. There are a bunch of lanes that you can explore around here with lots of little shops along the stairways and Gough Street, which is also where you can get the famous Kau Kee beef brisket noodles and Sing Heung Yuen noodles.
Other works I spotted randomly…
Anyone have other street art spots in Hong Kong to recommend? Share them in the comments here so I know where to go if I ever head back to Hong Kong!
Added later: Check out this Chinese calligraphy-type work by Phil Akashi at Deepwater Bay
Looking for more street art? Check out my other street art related guides: