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An Artwork Curator’s Information to Hong Kong

An Artwork Curator’s Information to Hong Kong

Mizuki Takahashi the executive director and chief curator at the Centre for Heritage, Arts and Textiles (CHAT) in Hong Kong, shares her favourite spots in the city.

As Hong Kong gears up for this year’s Art Week, who better to give you a helping hand than the most prominent members of the city’s art community.

Since moving to Hong Kong in 2016, Mizuki Takahashi has been the executive director and chief curator at the Centre for Heritage, Arts and Textiles (CHAT), where she leads the curatorial programme across contemporary art, design, craft and industrial heritage from a textile point of view, as well as overseeing partnership programmes for local and international museums and institutions.

She shares where to discover emerging artists, find the best Japanese food and a new Italian bar that serves the best negronis in town.

Mizuki Takahashi

Where in Hong Kong do you call home?

I moved to Hong Kong in 2016 to set up CHAT (Centre for Heritage, Arts, & Textile) in a renovated cotton spinning factory. I’ve been living in Sheung Wan ever since, where there are many Chinese antique galleries and newly opened contemporary art spaces.

What characteristics and traits are unique to the people who call Hong Kong home? 

Hong Kong is at the crossroads between East and West, where you can find the the synergy of both Eastern and Western cultures in art, food and entertainment. 

How would you describe the energy of Hong Kong during Art Week?

Expect to be flooded with art and champagne!

Which shows and exhibitions are you most looking forward to this month? 

I’m so looking forward to seeing CHAT’s 5th anniversary exhibition, Factory of Tomorrow, finally come to life, as it’s something we’ve been working on for over a year. In our unique factory setting, the exhibition will feature 19 prominent artists with Asian connections, such as Yee I-Lann, Jung Yeondoo, Frog King, Kato Izumi, Movana Chan and Yuki Kihara.

The exhibition will introduce artistic interactions with Hong Kong’s modern history as well as the artists imagining of a world future through a textile lens. 

Tell us about CHAT’s plans this Art Week?

In addition to our 5th anniversary exhibition, we’ll have a booth at Art Basel featuring the Hong Kong artist Sarah Lai. And at Art Central, we’ll present the Japanese artist Sunayama Norico’s immersive performance with a giant scarlet skirt, A Sultry World. On March 28, we’ll also be hosting a special breakfast viewing with Ei Arakawa-Nash’s performance at 10 am. 

Presented at Art Central 2024: Norico Sunayama, Un monde parfumé, 2018 ©Centre Pompidou-Metz. Photo: Jacqueline Trichard

The best place to discover emerging artists?

Gallery Exit in Aberdeen always promotes emerging Hong Kong artists and I always spot new talent at Art Central.

An art institution or gallery that should be on every visitor’s list? 

The M+ should definitely be on everyone’s must-see list. As well as their Sigg collection, I also strongly recommend seeing their design and architecture gallery; it’s the only place in Asia where you can see such a diverse collection.  

I also recommend to explore the town of Tsuen Wan where there’s a real local vibe akin to an old Hong Kong film.

The best place to eat?

I love the Latin American restaurant Mono in Central; every single dish brings you a surprise and a smile!

The best place for Japanese food? 

CENSU on Gough Street always has new styles of Japanese dishes made with fresh ingredients. Don’t miss their oysters, which are freshly delivered every morning from Japan.

A new F&B venue you love? 

Bar Leone in Sheung Wan serves the best negroni in the city, and their snacks, such as smoked olives and focaccia sandwiches, are very tasty. 

See Also

Bar Leone serves the best negroni in the city

What’s something a visitor can’t leave without seeing?

Usually tourists come to Hong Kong for only 2-3 days and stay in the city. But I highly recommend taking a ferry to go to explore the islands such as Lamma island to chill out. 

A design lover’s heaven?

The new shopping mall AIRSIDE in East Kowloon was designed by the internationally acclaimed Norwegian architecture firm, Snøhetta. This is their first building in Hong Kong, and they’ve created a beautiful interior and rooftop garden. You can also try indoor surfing there!

Your happy place or hidden gem in the city?

Definitely The Mills in Tsuen Wan, its an old Hong Kong  industrial heritage building where you can enjoy art, shopping and local foods. 

What traditions or customs should someone be aware of before visiting Hong Kong?

Freezing inside a building with super strong air conditioning is Hong Kong’s modern tradition! Don’t forget bring scarf or shawl to keep you warm inside shopping malls and restaurants. 

What do you love most about Hong Kong?

Always the people.

(Hero Image: Hou I-Ting, Sewing Field_ CHAT Living Room No.3, 2021-2022)

Source: Prestige Online

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