Joelyn's Museum Escapades

Museum Escapades: Hong Kong Arts Centre + Comix Home Base

Museum Escapades

Whenever I travel, I do my best to visit any good museums or arts centres within the country. Thanks to the Tiger, Val and I got information and made our way to the Hong Kong Arts Centre and their newer Comix Home Base. With both of them located nearest to Wanchai MTR, it was going to be a breeze to get to, right?

Not really.

Note: If you’d like to head to the Hong Kong Arts Centre and the Comix Home Base, please note that while the two of them are affiliated, they are located quite a fair walk away from each other.

But getting to the good stuff…

Down the rabbit hole we go!
Down the rabbit hole we go!

Hong Kong Arts Centre

The building housing the Hong Kong Arts Centre was quite nondescript, though it was at the corner of a long row of commercial buildings (the Arts Centre is pretty close to the Courts and the Immigration office).  We entered from the side, which resembled the Box Office of our Arts House, only bigger and with brochures for older Hong Kong films.

The place also housed about 2-3 galleries, an art school on its top floor, washrooms designed by the art students, and a café. Taking note of that day’s exhibition, we headed up to their 4th floor gallery (Pao Galleies), where a walking tour was already taking place.

Other visitors in the midst of their tour
Other visitors in the midst of their tour
Illuminated Presence - on exhibition while we were there
Illuminated Presence – on exhibition while we were there

Illuminated Presence was a collaborative exhibition of the works and legacy of Yeh Shih-Chiang, a Taiwan master painter and calligrapher, placed side-by-side to the interpretive works and photographs of Yeh Wei-Li, created in response to Yeh Shih-Chiang’s work.

Apart from the artfully curated placement of oil paintings, calligraphy, and related photography, short videos and artefacts which allowed visitors to glimpse into the life of the master artist gave little breaks between quiet contemplation of each piece of work.

Calligraphy by the master
Calligraphy by the master
And his tools
And his tools
The biggest piece of work there. Loved how the curation positioned this.
The biggest piece of work there. Loved how the curation positioned this.
Photographs of the master's workspace
Photographs of the master’s workspace

The gallery was built with a gradual descend to the mezzanine level, with each level representing a stage in the artist’s and photographer’s journey. This particular piece struck me then – reminding me of the solitude in the mind of an artist, but presented via a photograph, showing the external collaboration against individual creation.

One of my favourites from the exhibition
One of my favourites from the exhibition

Soon after, Val and I made our way to Comix Home Base.

Do check out the exhibitions and their running periods before you head to the Hong Kong Arts Centre – while located in the incredibly busy Hong Kong CBD, the centre hosts a variety of exhibitions, screenings, and activities for the public to enjoy.

The Hong Kong Arts Centre is located on 2 Harbour Road, with the closest MTR to be Wanchai MTR Exit C. For more information on the Hong Kong Arts Centre, click here.

Comix Home Base

Back mascot judges you...
Back mascot judges you…

Comix Home Base was trickier to find, with us weaving between the busy roads of Wanchai to look for it. We found the Comix Home Base sandwiched within a row of shophouses. Our interests piqued, we went in.

And realized we entered via the back door, a.k.a. the gift shop.

At that time, we found out about a Comix eXchange showcase – and I thought it mean there was going to be a market of some sorts.

Instead, we went up and were treated to the colourful works of Rainbow Leung and Elphonso Lam.

Directory of the building
Directory of the building
Comix eXchange welcomes you!
Comix eXchange welcomes you!
With scenes...
With scenes…
...characters...
…characters…
...and stories
…and stories

Apart from prints and characters, their storyboards, creative processes, as well as first edition work were put up for exhibition. Their works ranging from loosely-drawn depictions of daily Hong Kong life, to solid-coloured animal martial artists, to their modern interpretation of wuxia comics.

I especially liked Elphonso Lam’s Fury Animals – a great combination of cute, funny, and action.

Elphonso Lam's Fury Animals and merch!
Elphonso Lam’s Fury Animals and merch!

Another thing I liked about the eXchange was how this was a regular programme, aimed to promote local artists. Works from local, regional, and international artists can also be promoted via the comics library, located on the top floor of the building.

Though small, visitors can sit, relax, and indulge in comics across languages, genre, and medium. But be sure to get there early! They only have 1 terminal for browsing online comics.

Comics on display along the seating areas.
Comics on display along the seating areas.
From where we sat.
From where we sat.

The funny thing was, about a couple of weeks after returning from Hong Kong, Cheng Tju managed to head over to place works done by Max, Jerry, Ben, and many other indie artists into the library. Looking forward to the smiles on those who pick up and enjoy their comics!

Comix Home Base is located on 7 Mallory Street, spanning from Ground Floor to the 4th Floor. Their nearest MTR Exit is via Wanchai MTR Exit A3. To find out more about them, click here.

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