Singapore Street Art: Where to find Street Art in Chinatown

Last Updated on 17 January, 2022

Chinatown is Singapore’s Chinese heritage district and popular with tourists and locals alike for its great mix of historical landmarks and traditional shophouse architecture, right next to the modern towers of Singapore’s Central Business District. These days you can find a surprising number of murals and street art in Chinatown from both Singaporean and international artists which tell you a little bit about the area’s story. I’ve put together a detailed guide on where to find street art in Chinatown.

Chinatown in Singapore actually refers to quite a large area, but to make it a bit more organised I’ve broken up my guide by area – Chinatown historically has 4 main sub-districts which is what I’ve used here: Kreta Ayer, Telok Ayer, Bukit Pasoh and Tanjong Pagar. And while it’s technically more Outram than Chinatown, I’ve also included the Blair Plain area because it’s not too far away.

As Chinatown is Singapore’s designated ethnic Chinese enclave and a popular destination for international visitors to Singapore, especially during Chinese New Year and Mid-Autumn Festival where the streets are alive with activity, lights and lots of food. I’ve also included some suggestions of nearby attractions so you can do some sightseeing while looking at street art in Chinatown.

If you’re based in United States, I do conduct virtual tours showcasing Chinatown and Telok Ayer on Amazon Explore, do check those out to learn more about the area and see the murals up close.

Pin it: Where to find Street Art in Singapore Chinatown

For more street art in Singapore checking out Little India or Kampong Glam as well, or head on over to Bugis-Bras Basah near the museums instead. For heartland areas, go west to Jurong West or east to Tanjong Katong and Joo Chiat. Check out my full list of street art guides from around the world for more, or head on over to @singaporestreetart on Instagram for more.


Street Art Projects

Singapore has a strange relationship with street art – most of the works you see have been commissioned as you need permission to paint the walls in Singapore to avoid getting in trouble with the law. Here’s a rundown of some of the major street art projects that contributed to the artworks in this area. Most of the street art in Chinatown took place in/after 2015, aka Singapore’s 50th year of Independence SG50 where there was a lot of fanfare and programmes throughout the year. 

50 Bridges

50 Bridges was a part of SG50OZ, a joint collaboration between Singapore and the Australian High Commission in celebration of 50 years of inter-nation collaboration as well as Singapore’s 50th jubilee. 50 Walls was one part of 50 Bridges, and saw 50 street artworks created by artists from both countries in various neighbourhoods around the country. 

NEA Our Hawker Centres – An art and heritage project

This was another SG50 celebration helmed by the National Environment Agency where they had 50 murals painted in hawker centres around the island. Many of these were social projects that involved students and the community coming together to paint, others were artist-led. See more about NEA Our Hawker Centres and flip the e-book.

Colouring Banda Street

Yet another SG50 project driven by auditing company PriceWaterhouseCoopers in collaboration with the Kreta Ayer Residents Committee in collaboration with Singaporean artist Belinda Low that depicts scenes of Singapore from past and present and was meant to spruce up this older housing estate. Head here for more about Colouring Banda Street.

Yip Yew Chong

Yip Yew Chong is a Singaporean artist who used to live in Chinatown and has become very popular for his distinct nostalgic murals that showcase life in Singapore in the 70s-80s when he was a child. You will find many of his works all around this neighbourhood. See all of Yip YC’s Murals.

You can follow a guided tour via LocoMole (S$9.98)created in partnership with YipYC, which will show you all his murals and even integrates some interesting Augmented Reality (AR) functions that lets you take some fun photos with his murals!

Singapore Street Art Temple Street YipYC Canto Opera AR
I took this tour with the LocoMole app and what they’ve done with AR is pretty cool – the costumes drawn in this mural can become a sticker that you can use to take some fun photos with. I was invited to check this out as media but I’m not getting paid to promote this, I just thought I’d share because it does look pretty interesting.

Kreta Ayer

Kreta Ayer is what I call ‘downtown Chinatown’ and where you can find the touristy pedestrianised streets and all the action takes place during Chinese New Year. It covers the area bound by Upper Cross Street, South Bridge Road, Kreta Ayer Road and New Bridge Road.

  • Upper Cross Street
  • Mosque Street
  • Pagoda Street
  • Temple Street [NEW]
  • Chinatown Complex
  • Smith Street
  • Banda Road
  • What’s Nearby

Upper Cross Street

Location: 200 South Bridge Road (wall at alley connecting Upper Cross Street to Mosque Street)

Singapore Street Art Chinatown Ernest Zacharevic Dragon All
by Ernest Zacharevic (2019). I took this shot from across the street

I saw this work while driving by along Upper Cross Street, and to my delight found that this was a new Ernest Zacharevic work done in 2019. It shows a girl and a boy riding a golden dragon. I couldn’t find much else information on the piece, but it’s a beautiful eye-catching artwork as always.

Mosque Street

Location: 48 Mosque Street

This artwork belongs to the Porcelain Hotel situated on the side of the shophouse row, an extension of the hotel’s decor which revolves around porcelain designs. It’s such a beautiful intricate piece, pity I couldn’t find any info on whether any artist was involved in putting up this piece.

Singapore Street Art Mosque Street Porcelain
Very eye-catching white and blue design

Pagoda Street

Location: 83 Pagoda Street (Back alley behind Lucky Chinatown)

Yip Yew Chong has painted plenty of murals all around Chinatown – this one celebrates Mid-autumn Festival which typically sees families lighting lots of colourful lanterns and feasting on mooncakes and pomelo fruits. Here’s a fun mistake YipYC made in his painting – the bowls of tang yuan or soup dumplings on the table are actually eaten during Yuanxiao (15th day or the end of Lunar New Year) or Dongzhi (Winter solstice), but he mixed it up in his head!

Singapore Street Art Pagoda Street YipYC MidAutumn
Mid-Autumn Festival by Yip Yew Chong. I love the cute lanterns, and the Superman one kinda looks like the artist.

Temple Street [NEW]

Location: 30 Temple Street, side wall next to alleyway

This is one of Yip Yew Chong’s newest works from 2021 and quite an impressively large piece on the side of a shophouse. I was quite lucky to catch the artist himself working on this piece which showcases some nostalgic sights of businesses in Chinatown back in the day, from an old school kopitiam to a bustling provision shop and market. It took him 24 days to complete this work because of the wet and hot weather, and he had lots of people (including me) drop by to watch him work.

Singapore Street Art Chinatown Temple Street Yip Yew Chong Kopitiam
Dreams of Chinatown by Yip Yew Chong (2021). To the left is a typical dried goods and provision shop, while the right shows an old school kopitiam. Apparently he’s worked his parents’ names into the stall names!
Singapore Street Art Chinatown Temple Street Yip Yew Chong Market
This is an open-air market selling fresh produce and meat and seafood. I caught Yip YC himself painting the last bits of this around the corner.
Singapore Street Art Chinatown Temple Street Yip Yew Chong Tea
Remember to look up and see the way he’s incorporated the actual windows into the artwork with the bamboo poles, and love the tea waterfall!

This was the old mural that used to be here before 30 Temple Street was renovated:

Singapore Street Art Temple Street Bullock Cart
This bullock cart was painted by students, though I’m not sure which ones exactly for a Nippon paint project. It’s a callback to Kreta Ayer’s Chinese name 牛车水 which literally translates to ‘Cow Car Water’ as the water supply in this area used to be transported by bullock carts. It was removed in late 2021 when the shophouse was renovated

To the left of this is another wall covered with murals of what I like to call random scenes of Chinatown at night. This wall was covered up by hoarding for awhile but now you can clearly see a mishmash of various scenes, including quite a detailed Chinese opera performer, alleyways and rooftops of Chinese buildings and oddly enough, a night scene of the Great Wall of China.

[Photo coming soon – I thought I had it here but apparently never got around to getting a shot]

Location: Junction of Temple Street and South Bridge Road

One of YipYC’s largest murals, Cantonese Opera shows a very classic stage with actors in full opera regalia and makeup. You hardly see this scene around Singapore nowadays, though they were quite popular back in the day, roving around the various housing estates on temporary stages. YipYC spent 10 days painting this mural for Charity – check out the full story.

Singapore Street Art Temple Street YipYC Canto Opera
Cantonese Opera by Yip Yew Chong

Chinatown Complex [UPDATED]

Location: 335 Smith Street

Chinatown Complex has a pretty great hawker centre on its second floor – there is a huge variety of local street food to choose from, and it even has a craft beer and draught beer taps right in this hawker centre, quite a rarity in Singapore. You will find several murals on the ground level which also consists of a market.

The Path is a work by Australian artist Tom Civil, one of several works that he created in Singapore as a part of 50 Bridges The colours are a callback to Chinatown’s colour scheme. Can you spot the one special man with the dots around him to the right of the pillar?

Singapore Street Art Chinatown Complex Thomas Civil
The Path by Tom Civil. Located at the entrance facing Smith Street

Next to the Tom Civil work is this mural by YipYC from early 2018. Called Letter Writer, it depicts an old calligrapher who specialised in writing Chinese couplets and calligraphy which you often seen hung up in Chinese households around the Lunar New Year period for good luck. Read more about Letter Writers here.

Singapore Street Art Chinatown YipYC Letter Writer
Letter Writer by Yip Yew Chong. You can find these couplets in Chinatown today, but they may not handwritten or as pretty as these.

Local artist and art teacher Biddy Low who also goes by Nightflower Arts also did some murals within Chinatown Complex in early 2021 that showcased some of the earlier days of Chinatown, like the old street food scene before hawker centres were a thing, and some hints as to how Chinatown got its name.

Singapore Street Art Chinatown Complex Biddy Low Hawker Heritage
Singapore Hawker Heritage by Biddy Low

Prosper in Wealth, Huat ah! is a mural by Temasek Polytechnic School of Design students for the SG50 government initiative by NEA’s Our Hawker Centres. As with Chinese artworks, this has a lot of red in it and you can see lots of symbols which are references to Chinese culture and Singaporean heritage. Also, the eponymous Bruce Lee with a durian in hand, of course.

Singapore Street Art Chinatown Complex BruceLee
Bruce Lee Rocks Chinatown by TP. Located at the entrance facing the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple near the junction of Trengganu Street and Smith Street

There are several murals from NEA Hawker Centres around the first floor of Chinatown Complex, though none quite as big as these 2 featured here – see how many you can find. Here’s one more to get you started

Singapore Street Art Chinatown Complex LionDance
Chi He Wan Le by Singapore Polytechnic students for NEA Our Hawker Centres

Smith Street

Location: 30 Smith Street, Sidewall facing alley

This is YipYC’s rendition of the house he lived in on nearby Sago Street when he was a child. I love how it incorporates the actual doors and windows of the wall into the artwork – apparently he wasn’t allowed to paint over those as this is a conservation shophouse. I also love how he sizes it so that you can interact and be a part of the work if you chose to. More about this work here.

Singapore Street Art Smith Street YipYC My Home Bed
My Chinatown Home by Yip Yew Chong. This is the right half showing the living room area.
Singapore Street Art Smith Street YipYC My Home Cooking
This side shows the dining and kitchen area

Location: Junction of Smith Street and 266 South Bridge Road, Thye Shan Medical Hall

This is YipYC’s mural from May 2019 on the side of Thye Shan Medical Hall’s South Bridge Road outlet. It pictures a typical fruit and durian seller, but also incorporates a Japanese anime character known as Detective Conan. If that seems like a weird mashup to you, that’s because there is a movie coming out which features this character visiting Singapore and uncovering a murder at Marina Bay Sands.

Singapore Street Art Smith Street YipYC Detective Conan Durian
Yip Yew Chong: Detective Conan in Singapore. Glad he got to try some durian at least!

Also here is another mural from 2021 – not sure how permanent this one will be given that it’s not on an actual wall, but it’s the work of TraseOne, also a commission to promote the show The Ferryman: Legends of Nanyang for iQiyi channel, and even has a tie-in walking tour supported by STB. Since it’s a commission, it’s not quite his usual style but shows characters from the show, including a rather scary Tay Ping Hui as the Dragon King with scary red eyes.

Singapore Street Art Chinatown Smith Street Ts1 Ferryman
The Ferryman by Trase One. The faces here are of character in the show.

Banda Street

Around the area near Chinatown Complex is Banda Street, which has a pretty colourful history as both a hotspot for late night hawkers as well as the haunt for Japanese brothels back in the pre-war era. These days, it’s home to many older folk who live in the HDB rental blocks here. The murals here are largely by Belinda Low for the Colouring Banda Street project and feature scenes of Singapore back in its early days.

There are 13 murals in total, have some fun seeking them out. You can find them around Blk 4 and Blk 5 Banda Street as well as Blk 333 Kreta Ayer Road. Read more details here. Belinda’s works can be found around other parts of Singapore too – she’s a self-taught artist who takes inspiration from Van Gogh and often features strong women figures in her art.

Singapore Street Art Banda Road Samsui Stairs
The Samsui women were immigrants from China and worked as manual labourers, usually dressed in a typical blue outfit with a large red cloth hats
Singapore Street Art Banda Road Samsui Women
More Samsui women – this is closer to the Buddha Tooth Relic temple
Singapore Street Art Banda Road MBS
Right next to it is a mosaic of the Marina Bay Sands and its iconic 3 towers
Singapore Street Art Banda Road Bridge
On the other side of the stairway is this water under the bridge mural

Nearby Attractions

Here are some of my recs on highlights to check out nearby, so you can swing by and see some street art while you go see the sights of Singapore’s Chinatown.

  • Downtown Chinatown is lined with heritage shophouses and is nice at night when the streets are lit up. This area is usually extra festive during Chinese New Year and Mid-Autumn Festivals when the pedestrianised streets are bustling with activity and the main roads are decorated.
  • Buddha Tooth Relic Temple has a beautiful exterior to photograph. It’s free to enter (and air-conditioned) and apparently home to the Buddha’s left canine. Nearby, the Hindu Sri Mariamman Temple is one of Singapore’s oldest temples dating back to 1828.
  • Popular food souvenirs found in this part of Chinatown: Bak Kwa or BBQ-ed meat from Bee Cheng Hiang, egg tarts from Tong Heng.
  • Check out Chinatown Complex Hawker Centre on level 2 for your local food cravings – I like Smith Street Taps, a rather unusual craft beer joint located in the hawker centre itself, quite different from the typical Tiger beer that you can get from drinks stalls here, but it’s also home to the 1-star Michelin hawker Hawker Chan.

Telok Ayer

Telok Ayer is the oldest part of Chinatown and where the coastline used to be before land reclamation and Telok Ayer Street is home to a diverse bunch of religious buildings. It is also home to Ann Siang Hill and Club Street, an unusual mix of trendy bars and restaurants amidst traditional clan houses and shophouses, and the crowds spill out onto the pedestrianised streets on weekend nights.

  • Ann Siang Hill
  • Club Street [NEW]
  • Mohamed Ali Lane
  • Gemmill Lane
  • Amoy Street
  • What’s Nearby

Ann Siang Hill

Location: 4 Ann Siang Hill, Coconut Club

The works here are by Colombian-born artist Didier Jaba Mathieu aka Jabaone (whose works you can also see in Kampong Glam and Little India) for the Coconut Club Singapore, a hipster joint dedicated to local coconut-based foods Nasi Lemak and Cendol.

Singapore Street Art Ann Siang Hill Jaba Chicken
Ayam Goreng by Didier Jaba Mathieu. This is at the alleyway right above Lorna Jane and connects the parallel Erskine Road

Jaba first started with a piece called Ayam Goreng which translates as Chicken Rice in 2017 (the year of the chicken), before creating a dog in 2018. It seems he’s looking to produce the entire Chinese Zodiac series as 2019 revealed a Peranakan-inspired pig. I missed the dog he did in 2018 though, and sadly it hasn’t been updated since.

Singapore Street Art Ann Siang Hill Jaba Pig
Updated in 2019 in the year of the pig 猪. If you look closely at the motifs, there is a very strong Peranakan design inspiration in the choice of colour and patterns
Singapore Street Art Ann Siang Hill Jaba Zodiac
This new legend shows the 12 Zodiac animals and archives the past works that Jaba did here. You can see the chicken above, I missed the dog, and if we’re lucky we’ll eventually see the whole thing fill up in 9 years time.

Club Street [NEW]

Location: 72 Club Street, side of Goh Loo Club

Club Street is named not for the number of nightclubs that can be found here, but the business associations and clans or ‘clubs’ that operated in the area. Many of these club premises can still be found here today, including the Goh Loo Club up on the hill top of Club Street.

This club dates back to 1905 and was patronised by many wealthy Chinese businessmen who were involve in the Chinese revolution, and was the only club that continued operating in this area even through WWII when Singapore was occupied by the Japanese – read more about its history at Roots.sg.

This mural shows the Samsui woman unveiling one of these typical club meetings taking place in this shophouse premises and if you look closely, you just might recognise some of Singapore’s pioneers and even Sun Yat Sen himself in this mural.

Singapore Street Art Chinatown Club Street Goh Loo Club
Goh Loo Club by Benny Ong, Zhao Jian Wen and Didier Ng

Mohamed Ali Lane

Location: Junction of Mohamed Ali Lane and South Bridge Road

Just off South Bridge Road is the little lane that is home to some Yip Yew Chong murals done in October 2018. These are actually 4 different works that represent scenes or trades that were once commonly found in Singapore’s Chinatown area.

Singapore Street Art Mohamed Ali YipYC Pano
Mohamed Ali Lane – it’s across the road from the Sri Mariamman temple a little distance away and down the road from Ann Siang Hill
Singapore Street Mohamed Ali YipYC Window Mamak
On top you have ‘The Window’ with a Chinese and Malay families hanging clothes and sundry out the traditional way – love the cat and pigeon! Below is ‘Lion Dance Head Maker’, featuring a man who makes the giant puppet heads used in Lion Dance – the 2 boys are banging on little versions of the drums used in Lion Dance. On the right is ‘Mamak Shop’, usually run by an Indian man or mamak and selling all sorts of random sundry
Singapore Street Mohamed Ali YipYC Mask Samsui
Yip YC’s ‘Paper Mask and Puppet Seller’ shows a man selling these items on a tricycle – You definitely don’t see these in Singapore anymore. He is being watched by 2 Samsui women, or women labourers in their classic hats 

Gemmill Lane

Location: Gemmill Lane near junction with Amoy Street

This huge mural called Amoy Alley was created by Singaporean artist Chris Chai for The Artling and 8M Real Estate. Check out the video and write up in the link above – the dragon is taken from the nearby Thian Hock Keng temple and I love the intricate patterns that reflect the classic Peranakan tile patterns you find on the floors of the temples and shophouses around the area.

Singapore Street Gemmill Amoy Alley Pano
It’s a really long dragon!
Singapore Street Gemmill Amoy Alley Head
Here’s a closer look at the head of the dragon. Look at the detail!
Singapore Street Gemmill Amoy Alley Trees
This work is located in a very narrow backlane and quite impossible to take good shots of without proper equipment or a wide angle lens 

Amoy Street

Location: 7 Maxwell Road, Amoy Street Food Center Level 1

This series of 5 panels line the inner walls of Amoy Street Food Centre – there is a slightly raised area near the back of the hawker centre. They are a collaboration for NEA Hawker Centres by local street artist Ceno2 (whose works you can also find in Kampong Glam) and the students for Anglo Chinese School (ACS) in celebration of SG50 called ‘Then and Now‘.

Singapore Street Art Chinatown Amoy Food Centre Ceno2 Samsui Woman
My favourite one is quite classic Ceno – the portrait of a laughing samsui woman who’s throwing up a handisng which shows off that classic extra long pinky nail. The background pattern also reminds me of old school plastic bags.
Singapore Street Art Chinatown Amoy Food Centre Dragon
I really like this dragon too. The chinese characters on the lantern say Ping An or peace
Singapore Street Art Chinatown Amoy Food Centre Food Cart
Also cute is the Makan tricycle – back in the days before hawker centres, we had street food carts like these
Singapore Street Art Chinatown Amoy Food Centre Door
And of course this one is a throwback to the ACS school beginnings at 70 Amoy Street

Location: Opposite 96 Amoy Street, back side of Thian Hock Keng Temple

This Thian Hock Keng mural was painted by heritage muralist Yip Yew Chong and can be found on the back walls of the Thian Hock Keng temple – the front entrance is located along Telok Ayer Street, but the back walls are along Amoy Street. The oldest Chinese temple in Singapore dedicated to the sea goddess Mazu used to face the sea, though that land has now all been reclaimed and all you see are office blocks. This 44m long mural has scenes of what the area used to look like, as well as the lives of early Hokkien immigrants from Southern China. Check out his website for closer views of the artwork, it’s hard to take good photos with the cars and the sheer length.

Singapore Street Art Chinatown Amoy Street YipYC River
Thian Hock Keng Temple by Yip YC. Can you imagine that the land all those buildings in the background were once actually part of the sea?
Singapore Street Art Chinatown Amoy Street YipYC Pano
Here’s a really long pano, I know it’s hard to see the detail!

Nearby Attractions

Here are some of my recs on highlights to check out nearby, so you can swing by and see some street art while you go see the sights of Singapore’s Chinatown.

  • Nights are nice at Ann Siang Hill and Club Street which is quite the hipster hangout with bars, cafes and eateries galore. Be warned that it is absolutely packed on Friday and Saturday nights when they convert the street into pedestrian-only. Weekend nights are full of office workers who just wanna hang loose after a long week of work
  • Eat local street food at some pretty good hawker centres: there’s the famous Maxwell Hawker Centre or Amoy Street Food Centre
  • Telok Ayer Street used to be the coastline before land reclamation, and home to a diverse range of religious and cultural institutions side by side with each other with many dating back to the 1800s like the Thian Hock Keng Temple, Nagore Durgah Shrine and Al Abrar Mosque
  • Looking for quirky museums to check out in Singapore? The Musical Box Museum is right next to Thian Hock Keng and is also home to a cafe with an Peranakan Tile collection, as well as the tiny Fuk Tak Chi Temple further down the road which opens up into the Amoy Hotel.

Bukit Pasoh + Tanjong Pagar

Bukit Pasoh is a conservation area and its most well-known feature is Keong Saik Road, a notorious former red-light district and a rather dodgy gang turf to boot. Gentrification has turned it into one of the hip happening areas to be in Singapore, so much so that Lonely Planet named this area a top 10 of its 2017 Best in Asia destinations.

Tanjong Pagar meanwhile has gained a reputation for some of the most authentic (and popular) Korean restaurants in Singapore as well a whole row of boutique wedding shops for some reason.

  • Keong Saik Road
  • Teo Hong Road
  • Neil Road
  • Kreta Ayer Road [NEW]
  • Duxton Road
  • Duxton Hill [NEW]
  • What’s Nearby

Keong Saik Road

Location:  1 Keong Saik Road

This mural is by local artist duo RIPPLE ROOT for collaborative workspace The Working Capitol in 2016. A little alleyway connects Keong Saik Road to the back of the shophouses – both walls on either side are lined with exuberant abstract shapes and colours that are a signature look for RIPPLE ROOT.

Singapore Street Art Keong Siak RippleRoot 1
by RIPPLE ROOT (2016)
Singapore Street Art Keong Siak RippleRoot 2
It’s also where motorbike parking is located, so hard to get an unblocked shot
Singapore Street Art Keong Siak RippleRoot 3
This wall is on the side where the Working Capitol space is

Teo Hong Road

Location: 1 Teo Hong Road

It’s a short walk from Keong Saik Road to nearby Teo Hong Road, where you can find the Swis Ling Bak Kut Teh Seafood Restaurant. I’ve never eaten there, but I like the cartoony lion dancers you can find on either side of its side entrance

Singapore Street Art Teo Hong Road Swis Ling
No idea who the artwork belongs to

Neil Road

Location: 89 Neil Road (Shake Shack)

Singapore Street Art Chinatown Neil Road Skl0
Community by skl0 (2020)

Sam Lo’s new mural is a commission for Shake Shack’s second outlet in Singapore along Neil Road and this gorgeous piece really melds together eastern and western influences. I love how vibrant and colourful and detailed this artwork is – these elements were pieced together from different aspects of the surrounding neighbourhood.

Location: 74 Neil Road (Botanist)

Along Neil Road is a little hipster heaven of a cafe called Botanist – I have yet to visit it properly, but I love the swirly art on its sidewalls, which is also a very instagram-friendly spot that I first noticed because it kept popping up on my feed.

Singapore Street Art Neil Road Spirals
No info on who the artist is, let me know if you know!
Singapore Street Art Neil Road Spirals Plants
Cute little plant detail

Kreta Ayer Road [NEW]

Location: At the junction of Kreta Ayer Road and Neil Road

This wall contains a pretty long piece by Sam Lo aka SKL0 called Evolution//Revolution for music app BandLab in late 2021. This is a piece dedicated to the Singapore music scene of yesteryear – music aficionados might recognise names like Swee Lee Company, The Oddfellows, Force Vomit and even the Xinyao genre just to name a few.

Singapore Street Art Chinatown Kreta Ayer SKL0 Music 3
This mural is pretty long and hard to photograph because of the pillars!
Singapore Street Art Chinatown Kreta Ayer SKL0 Music 1
Disco baby~
Singapore Street Art Chinatown Kreta Ayer SKL0 Music 2
More of the mural

Duxton Road

Location: At the junction of Duxton Road and Craig Road

This area I jokingly call the Korean Wedding district for the sheer number of Korean restaurants and wedding shops along this stretch. Again, more unattributed works which are somewhat strange by eye-catching.

Singapore Street Art Duxton Road Olden Tech Close
These ancient Chinese ladies are all carrying modern devices like ipads and phones or branded bags that’s apparently by Singaporean visual artist Justin Lee – I couldn’t find a picture in his CV to confirm, but it does look like his past work.
Singapore Street Art Duxton Road Olden Tech
It’s a very long stretch
Singapore Street Art Duxton Road Coloured Dots
On the empty wall next to Crucycle (68 Duxton Road) are these random coloured dots. Why and who, again I have no idea. This reminds me of a Twister board

Duxton Hill [NEW]

Junction of Duxton Hill and Tanjong Pagar road

I was grabbing some food along Tanjong Pagar when this lovely blue and white mural caught my eye. Painted in late 2021, Ikan Todak is a mural by Tobyato that showcases the old legend of how Redhill got its name – swordfish were attacking Singapore’s shores and killing Singaporeans until a boy suggested using deploying banana tree stems to trap them. That swordfish battle apparently happened here in Tanjong Pagar, which is why this mural is here in Duxton HIll.

FYI if you’re not familiar with how the Redhill story ends, the Raja (King) was jealous of his successful plan and ordered his death, and when the boy was stabbed, his blood turned the entire hill red, hence the name Redhill or Bukit Merah.

Ikan Todak is a mural by Tobyato, a large white wall of a shophouse covered with dark blue swordfish and banana tree stems
Ikan Todak (2021) by Tobyato. I love the porcelain like look of this mural.

Nearby Attractions

  • Keong Saik Road is an upcoming hipster eating and hangout spot, and was picked by Lonely Planet as a top 10 spot to visit back in 2017.
  • The Art Deco Shophouse facade of Dong Ya Building is pretty iconic. Stalwart Tong Ah Eating House nearby makes for a good place to fuel up on local snacks, but those who want something more modern, Potatohead is the place to be.
  • Duxton Road is home to Singapore’s highest HDB flats – The [email protected]. The public can enjoy the view from its sky bridges on 26th and 50th floors for a small fee.
  • Tanjong Pagar Road is where you will find a ton of Korean restaurants and bars, so it can get pretty busy on the weekends.

Blair Plain

Blair Plain is actually a part of Outram and not Chinatown, but it’s close enough that you can just cross Cantonment Road and walk over to this area that is much quieter and less touristy than downtown Chinatown. Lots of lovely shophouses around here to check out, and hidden gem cafes and shops in the little lanes.

  • Everton Road
  • Spottiswoode Park Road

Everton Road

Location: 39-40 Everton Road, close to Asia Gardens apartment

Muralist Yip Yew Chong has created around 30 murals at this point in time, but Amah and Barber have the honour of being his first street art pieces painted back in late 2015. His murals tend to show lots of nostalgic detail about Singapore related to the surrounding area, and this is no exception.

Singapore Street Art Everton Road YipYC
This is the corner where you can see both works. Amah (right) faces the HDB estate while Barber (left) faces Asia Gardens
Singapore Street Art Everton Road YipYC Amah
The Amah is the name of a Chinese housemaid – this one is doing the laundry of a Peranakan household, which you can see from the laundry hung out to dry. Love the little details of animals and food to the right
Singapore Street Art Everton Road YipYC Barber
Barber is the scene of an old school barbershop which can usually be found in the alleyways such as this one

Location: Junction of Spottiswoode Park Road and Everton Road

This 3rd mural by YipYC is called Provision Shop and painted a few months after the other 2 works. This brings back lots of nostalgia. I love the life sized scooter and the pushcart hawker with his cat and mailbox (yup that’s not real) on the right.

Singapore Street Art Everton Road YipYC Provision
Go right up and check out the detail of the artwork to learn a bit about Singapore’s history

Spottiswoode Park Road

Location: 64 Spottiswoode Park Road, junction of Blair Road and Spottiswoode Park Road

Art Porters is an art gallery and besides its rotating exhibitions, you can enjoy the mural on its back side. This beautiful piece is by Alexface from Bangkok – you can spot his work at Bugis-Bras Basah as well – and showcases his signature cute little monster children.

Singapore Street Art Spottiswoode Park Alexface
Loving the Chinese and Peranakan detail subtly weaved into the artwork. The act of growing what looks like green beans makes me think it’s a callback to Singapore’s reputation as the Garden City
Singapore Street Art Spottiswoode Park Cat
Right next to the Art Porters entrance is this beam of light – fun fact: the cat and the tiny dragonfly underneath the sign were a rather guerilla addition by Yip Yew Chong, but the beam of light and the gallery name were not painted by him
Singapore Street Art Spottiswoode Park Fish
Just a bit further down is this random red luohan looking goldfish

Nearby Attractions

  • Everton Park is also quite a hip enclave for the brunch and cafe crowdNylon Coffee Roasters or Strangers Reunion are good places to start for coffee lovers, or see some other recs
  • 66 Spottiswoode Park is supposed to have the oldest intact painted shophouse facade in Singapore. There is a lot of lovely tile work and architecture to admire around here
  • Plant lovers might enjoy checking out the rare Binjai Tree which has heritage status and is a call back to this area’s past as a nutmeg plantation
  • You are not too far from Tanjong Pagar Railway Station which would be a great place to check out for its architecture and they often hold interesting events there, but sadly it’s currently under redevelopment and will only reopen in 2025.

Spotted any other works I missed out? Drop me a comment here and let me know. Street art is always evolving so some of these works might disappear while others may pop up, I’ll update this street art in Chinatown guide as regularly as I can.

If you love hunting street art in Singapore, make sure to check out my side Instagram account @singaporestreetart for more updates on new works. Here are some of my other Singapore street art articles and guides, or check out my full list of all my street art guides from around the world.

About The Author

8 thoughts on “Singapore Street Art: Where to find Street Art in Chinatown”

  1. Girish Vikas Naik

    Btw, how do you find out details regarding the art piece name, artist etc? Is it written somewhere on the art piece?

    Regards
    Girish

    1. It’s ok, it’ll give me a reason to go walk around :)

      Finding out about murals usually involves some intense google-fu and trawling social media platforms. Often if they leave a tag that at least gives me somewhere to start from, otherwise I ask around my followers over at @singaporestreetart on IG – lots of local artists and it’s a small scene so someone usually knows that it is!

  2. Girish Vikas Naik

    Hi. Your posts on street art are amazing and have me hooked. I just completed the Chinatown trail and would like to report two works which I think were not on your trail. These are located along Temple Road ( I think) leading from the Chinatown MRT entrance to the Marimman Temple. These are sponsored by Nippon Paint.

Tell me what you think

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to Top