Art Basel Hong Kong 2018, Day 2

Art Basel Hong Kong 2018, Day 2

Still searching for the fair’s best and its surroundings

Another exciting day here in Hong Kong. The fair is on the eve of its public opening and gallery owners pamper the collectors, eager to close sales before booths get invaded. In the crowd, curious pass by staring at each other and keeping en eye on their purse. Many stands’ walls have now been re-filled to replace the works sold.
Some booths are showing the very best of contemporary art and walking through them we can clearly perceive the importance (and value) of the exhibited artists. Then, you can take a ride on the first floor where the most important artists in circulation are displayed – in the quadrilateral between the Gagosian Gallery, White Cube, Hauser & Wirth and Marian Goodman: it’s real eye candy. Here the prices of the artworks are dizzying, but taking a look doesn’t cost anything.
Art Basel Hong Kong 2018

Art Basel Hong Kong 2018

For Dr. Nope Jr of Urs Fischer from Gagosian, the request is around 4.5 million dollars, while for the installation of Louise Bourgeois by Hauser & Wirth, a couple more must be added. For the famous drugs cabinet of Damien Hirst (Twist of the Gloom and the Gleam, 2006), exhibited by White Cube, however, the demand is under two million. Hard to sell? Perhaps.

Urs Fischer, Dr. Nope Jr. (2010-2015)

The fair started off rather slowly – they say around – but the feeling is that there are collectors willing to spend lot of money. Many of them, however, are looking for some young artists destined to increase their value tenfold. For sure, it’s not an easy game: it takes a long eye to discover one! Alternatively, you can always rely on a talented art advisor or trust an art gallery.

Encounters

Tomorrow we will tour the Discoveries section to see the emerging artists exposed by the 25 invited galleries, and give you some good advice. In the meantime, if you are at the show, take a look at the large installations that occupy the central spaces of the two floors: they’re part of the Encounters project, curated by Alexie Glass-Kantor, executive director of Artspace in Sydney. These huge works are specific projects and interactive performances created for the fair and catch the eye while entertaining the audience.
Chou Yu-Cheng for Encounters

Chou Yu-Cheng for Encounters

Outside the Convention Center, beyond the incessant traffic of the city, the presence of art is perceived only at times. But if you walk along the promenade that runs along the ocean, reminiscent of the other one under the Tate of London, you cannot miss the Outdoor Sculpture Park. It’s located in front of the entrance of Art Central, distant relative of Art Basel – hosting 100 galleries from all over the world.
In the park you will find works by Rashed Araeen, Michael Craig-Martin, Matthew Tsan Man Fu and the ever-present and omnipresent Yayoi Kusama. Nothing really exceptional – allow us to say –, but an outdoor walk in the countryside round here is a precious thing in itself!  See you tomorrow for new updates from Hong Kong, stay tuned!
Top 5 Hong Kong Luxury Hotels

Top 5 Hong Kong Luxury Hotels

By Giulia Cennamo

Hong Kong is all about enjoying life, and its luxury hotels are dazzling! Opulent Hong Kong has some of the most extravagant hotels in the world. If you’re ready for an ultimate hotel experience (and mind-bending breakfast buffets), take a peek at these distinctive Hong Kong luxury hotels

CONRAD HONG KONG

The Conrad Hong Kong charms leisure travelers as well as briefcase-toting road warriors. It soars 61 stories above Hong Kong’s vibrant business district, capturing views of the city’s futuristic skyline and its primeval Victoria Peak.
Conrad Hong Kong Hotel Harbour View Room - Top 5 Hong Kong Luxury Hotels

Conrad Hong Kong Hotel Harbour View Room

The Conrad Hong Kong‘s 512 rooms and suites are comfortably furnished, with marble bathrooms and picture windows. Guest amenities include fast, free Wi-fi, a heated outdoor pool, and a 24-hour fitness suite with sauna, steam room, whirlpool, and massage cabins. Varied in-house dining spotlights modern Cantonese and traditional Tuscan cuisine. Bonus: you’re steps from both Hong Kong Park and Pacific Place, a top destination for moviegoing and designer shopping.


CORDIS HONG KONG HOTEL

Tucked into in 42 floors of a shapely glass-and-steel tower,  Cordis Hong Kong celebrates modern style. Its 665 rooms are sleek and stylish, with floor-to-ceiling windows, oversized bathrooms, sleep-inducing beds, and rocket-fast wireless.
Cordis Hong Kong Hotel The Garage Bar - Top 5 Hong Kong Luxury Hotels

Cordis Hong Kong Hotel The Garage Bar

The Cordis is set in Kowloon, Hong Kong’s center for the arts, entertainment, and non-chain restaurants and shops. Yet the hotel is a short walk to the ferry station to “Central” (downtown Hong Kong), making it ideal for visitors who want to explore the city’s two moods. A full 82% of TripAdvisor reviews give the Cordis an Excellent rating, with special praise for its club-level lounge and its Michelin-starred Ming Court restaurant’s modern Cantonese food with wine pairings.


EAST HONG KONG

EAST, Hong Kong’s artistic bent is in sync with its creative neighbors in the city’s Swire Island East: fashion studios, architectural firms, ad agencies, media headquarters. All the art in the hotel’s public spaces and 345 rooms is by local artists. (If you have a suite, you also have a sculpted pink or yellow dinosaur).
EAST Hotel Hong Kong Room - Top 5 Hong Kong Luxury Hotels

EAST Hotel Hong Kong Room

EAST Hong Kong caters to fashionable business travelers and vacationers. Lures include the hotel’s Feast (Food by East) restaurant, Beast (body by East) gym, and Sugar, a rooftop bar that’s one of Hong Kong’s hottest. Cityplaza’s shops, both local and global, beckon from across the road.


FOUR SEASONS HOTEL HONG KONG

Considered one of Asia’s top luxury hotels, Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kongflaunts an ideal location in the Central district, with dazzling views and quick access to everywhere in town. The hotel’s 345 guest rooms are spacious and light-filled, with either Eastern or Western design touches. All have panoramic views, extravagant bathrooms, and cutting-edge tech.
Four Seasons Hong Kong Hotel Suite - Top 5 Hong Kong Luxury Hotels

Four Seasons Hong Kong Hotel Suite

Dining is star-studded, with two Michelin stars for Caprice’s French cuisine and three stars for Lung King Heen, the world’s first Chinese restaurant to be so honored. The Four Seasons’ standout fitness offerings encompass a lovely spa, two outdoor pools plus a cold plunge, a 24/7 fitness center, and more. in keeping with the hotel’s open view of Victoria Peak, staying here is a luxury traveler’s peak experience.


GRAND HYATT HONG KONG

Grand Hyatt Hong Kong is truly a grand hotel, with a brilliant central location and a see-and-be-seen lobby. TripAdvisor reviewers rave about the hotel’s stupendous breakfast buffet and its club floors.
Grand Hyatt Hong Kong Grand Club Lounge - Top 5 Hong Kong Luxury Hotels

Grand Hyatt Hong Kong Grand Club Lounge

All 542 rooms, chicly renovated in 2016, offer free Wi-fi, deep soaking tubs, and a complimentary smartphone for free local (and some international) use. Guest amenities include the full-service Plateau Spa, a 24-hour gym, and a 50-meter (165-foot) heated pool. Guests can dine globally on refined Cantonese, Japanese, Indian, and on Grissini’s renowned yet mid-priced Italian chow.
Hong Kong’s 5 best restaurants

Hong Kong’s 5 best restaurants

By Jo March

GOUGH’S ON GOUGH

WHERE: 15 Gough Street, Sheung Wan

WHAT: Modern British cuisine

WHY: This two-storey modern British eatery is operated and designed by furniture brand Timothy Oulton – their store is next door. The golden spiral staircase by the door leads up to the main dining room and bar. It is difficult to take it all in, from the glittering chandelier and smattering of vintage furniture to the black and white marble flooring.
Scottish brown crab from Gough’s on Gough Hong Kong

Scottish brown crab from Gough’s on Gough Hong Kong

The small private room overlooks Gough Street and has a quirky zebra wall hanging lurking in the corner. Head chef Arron Rhodes features modern British cuisine with Asian and Peruvian elements, such as the dashi custard with sea urchin, shimeji mushrooms, trout eggs and teriyaki sauce, and the Peruvian corn with chicha morada-infused corn, leche de tigre sauce, popped kaniwa grains and warm avocado. Don’t miss out the chocolate fondant with Peruvian cacao dessert !The service is well paced and not intrusive.

ANYTHING ELSE: Rhodes previously worked at Dot Cod and is into sustainable food sourcing.


HAKU

WHERE: Shop OT G04B, G/F, Ocean Terminal, Harbour City, Tsim Sha Tsui

WHAT: Modern Japanese cuisine with a European twist

WHY: Tucked away in a corner, this restaurant is a little hard to find (many patrons initially confuse this place with another Japanese restaurant right next to it) but like a treasure hunt, the search is worth it. If you can bag a seat or two at the chef’s counter, consider yourself lucky. The kappo (open theatre-style) kitchen is where the best seats are, as you can interact with Agustin Balbi, who joined from The Ocean in Repulse Bay, while he puts the finishing touches on dishes.
Haku

Haku

Order the tasting menu to find the best of what the chef has to offer. Consider it a full-course meal of his greatest hits – only rarely you can be disappointed. Let yourself be impressed by the starters of Fukuoka oysters topped with lime and green apple granita, which was flavourful and wonderfully cooling. Another not-to-be-missed dish is a salad of tomatoes served with barracuda fish and Bellota ham, topped with sprinklings of dried sake kasu (sake rice lees). Enjoy his chu toro topped with Kristal caviar dish, but is no longer part of his tasting menu. However, it is still included in the à la carte menu, and should be on your list of dishes to try.

ANYTHING ELSE: The chef speaks fluent Japanese, having lived and studied there for a number of years.


HOI WAN HEEN

WHERE: Hullett House, 1881 Heritage, 2A Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

WHAT: High-end Cantonese and Sichuan fusion cuisine

WHY: Not only are the dishes good, but the ambience offers something different from the usual. The cuisine is Cantonese and Sichuan fusion served with contemporary flare. Based at historic Hullett House, the ambience is like walking back in time with traditional Chinese décor inside and a courtyard. The interior is reminiscent of an old Shanghai teahouse, with dark wooden lattice screens on the walls, an archway on one side of the restaurant and wooden floors and furnishing. There are less than 10 tables inside.
Hoi wan heen Hong Kong

Hoi wan heen Hong Kong

Some small dishes are worth trying, including the chicken with Sichuan chilli sauce, a cold dish with tender juice chicken and the sauce is toned down for local diners, but it still kicked. The presentation is creative, with the potato bun stuffed with chicken curry and potato looking like a basket of potatoes. The deep fried carrot dumplings with minced pork were presented like baby carrots on soil – the soil is edible biscuit. The minced pork and vegetable dumplings in chilli oil were soft and oozing with chilli oil, which was very tasty. The stir-fried Rosarino with dice barbecued pork and vegetables in shrimp oil looked like fried rice but has a more nutty taste. For dessert, the taro oozed with sweet taro sauce. The dinner menu features seafood and meat dishes.

ANYTHING ELSE: The old-Shanghai vibe and courtyard make it perfect for small events.


LA RAMBLA BY CATALUNYA

WHERE: Shop 3071-73, IFC Mall, Central

WHAT: Catalunya’s newly expanded Spanish restaurant is inspired by the flavours of Catalunya.

WHY: The newly opened restaurant didn’t miss a beat and is very, very rare. From the service to the food, everything is top quality. And no wonder – the majority of the staff is from the old Catalunya restaurant. The few things that have changed since moving to Central from Wan Chai are the updated menu and décor, both of which feature contemporary twists.
La Rambla by Catalunya Hong Kong

La Rambla by Catalunya Hong Kong

The highlight of the meal is the truffle bomba, or potato bomb. This very popular tapas dish, which resembles a meat-stuffed croquette, is topped with a brava sauce with a spicy kick, garlic aioli, and freshly shaved truffle. Another dish, though not as “beautiful” (read: made for Instagram) but just as delicious, is the tortilla camarones, or shrimp fritters. Churros, which were some of the best in the city, are the perfect way to end the meal.

ANYTHING ELSE: The restaurant also boasts a large outdoor terrace overlooking the Victoria Harbour, which can seat up to 100 people – the same number as what can be accommodated indoors.


LE 39V

WHERE: Shop A, 101/F, International Commerce Centre, 1 Austin Road West

WHAT: High quality neo-French cuisine with a view to match

WHY: This restaurant has it all, from the award-winning neo-French cuisine to the amazing views from the 101st floor of ICC to the impeccable service. Paris-based chef Frédéric Vardon opened his Michelin-starred Le 39V in Hong Kong earlier in the year. The name is taken from the flagship Paris address which opened in 2010 at 39, Avenue George, which acquired its first Michelin star in 2012. Vardon’s right hand man, executive chef Nicolas Raynal, presents seasonal menu items, with signature dishes including Niçoisé-style red mullet, thick monkfish with shellfish and Relieuse au chocolate.
Le 39v hong kong

Le 39v hong kong

The roasted Bresse pigeon is amazing, prepared with sage, figs and egg plant in tangy jus. You have to taste also the Paris-Brest praline hazelnuts, dropped on a base of praline ice cream and wrapped in chopped hazelnuts, the puffs are stuffed with a light praline cream and house-made praline and the gluten-free chocolate soufflé.

ANYTHING ELSE: This is Vardon’s Hong Kong edition of his acclaimed Parisian restaurant, which is located on 30 Avenue George V, hence the restaurant’s name.
Art Basel Hong Kong 2018, Day 1

Art Basel Hong Kong 2018, Day 1

By Chiara Rizzolo

As Asia’s focus on art, together with the sophistication of the (young, ambitious) buyers are both on the rise, Art Basel is strongly increasing its commitment to quality

2018 Edition is showcasing cutting edge works by established and emerging artists and presenting – for the fourth consecutive year – “Encounters”, large installations and site-specific projects created for the show by 12 artists from 11 different countries. Year after year, what seems to be marking the fair is the influx of great galleries coming in from all over the world — especially the Western world, bringing out their very best and often engaging western artists to eager Asian collectors.
Rudolf Stingel, Untitled (2015)

Rudolf Stingel, Untitled (2015)

So it’s just a matter of time before we find ourselves floating into warm, golden light cast by Oliafur Eliasson’s Black Glass Sun: a sculpture, a light eidolon or maybe the never ending quest for personal identity in an infinte reflections game.
Olafur Eliasson, Concave Sun (2017)

Olafur Eliasson, Concave Sun (2017)

Korean-born Nam June Paik then, through his digital video installations, reshapes our perceptions of the temporal image in contemporary and electronic media art. His “Pyramid Interactive” merges well known communications theories with a Pop aesthetic, intertwining art, media and popular culture.
Nam-June Paik, Pyramid Interactive (1994-1995)

Nam-June Paik, Pyramid Interactive (1994-1995)

Despite the few VIP attending, the VIP preview is a huge success: literally overcrowded! Among others, we spot Hans Ulrich Obrist, the artistic director of London’s Serpentine Galleries – and currently the most powerful man in the art ecosystem – and Noah Horowitz, director of Art Basel Miami.
Hans Ulrich Obrist at the fair

Hans Ulrich Obrist at the fair

Curated by Alexie Glass-Kantor and supported by MGM Resorts Art and Culture, Encounters easily catches visitors’ attention. The exhibit is a constellation of 12 large-scale artworks and site-specific projects brightening as giants starts throughout the Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Featuring works by Isabel and Alfredo Aquilizan, Chou Yu-Cheng, Toshikatsu Endo, Ryan Gander, Subodh Gupta, Iván Navarro, Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran, Shinji Ohmaki, Jorge Pardo, Erwin Wurm, Ulla von Brandenburg and Nyapanyapa Yunupingu – Encounters‘ installations actively engage the audience either requiring the viewer’s participation to activate the work and mirroring the body of the spectator, making him part of the show.

Art is serious play they say

But Art sometimes is a gamble also, so the fair’s most expensive artwork, Willem de Kooning’s Untitled XII (1975) is sold in less than two hours to billionaire collector and Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen by Lévy Gorvy gallery – with an asking price of $35 million.
Timur Si-Qin, “Campaign for a New Protocol, Part II,” (2018)

Timur Si-Qin, “Campaign for a New Protocol, Part II,” (2018)

Interdisciplinary artist Timur Si-Qin displays a VR environment at Societé’s booth, combining renderings and a simulation of natural landscapes to make us reflect on the reality of climate change today. The virtual reality experience immerses the spectator in a digital dimension calling upon humans to change the way we live and our spirituality.
Installation view of Carlos/Ishikawa’s booth at Art Basel in Hong Kong, 2018. © Art Basel. Courtesy of Art Basel.

Installation view of Carlos/Ishikawa’s booth at Art Basel in Hong Kong, 2018. © Art Basel. Courtesy of Art Basel.

From landscape to landscape, Korakrit Arunanondchai’s With history in a room filled with people with funny names 4 (with stage for extinction) (2018) at Carlos/Ishikawa adresses themes as global capitalism, animism, technology invasion and all kind of dystopic expressions of our material world. A quest for beauty and intimacy in an alienated world driven by data and holding power over us.
Keep reading us for your daily dose of contemporary Art, a new Art Basel day is coming!
Art Basel Hong Kong: a place for everyone

Art Basel Hong Kong: a place for everyone

By Rasha Eleyan

If you are a fan of international art and always eager to discover new talent with unique perspectives and a desire to shake up the art world, then Art Basel might be your sort of an exhibition

Art Basel, as the name suggests, originates in Basel, a city in Northwestern Switzerland, and its surrounding areas. Art Basel Honk Kong 2018 Look Lateral Nestled between France, Germany, and Switzerland, Basel has long been a hub of cultural exchange, feeding the famous classical styles of fashion and music that have crossed these borders, then progressing onto the radical and revolutionary artwork that emerged from the war. And, naturally, a city so based on cultural exchange is a perfect place from which to found a celebration of international artists. Art Basel Honk Kong 2018 Look Lateral Back in the 1970s, three gallerists, Beyeler, Bruckner, and Hilt, had a vision. Seeing the diversity of the contents of their galleries, and noticing how some great works in smaller galleries by less known artists were being overlooked, they founded a platform on which diversity would be showcased and rewarded. They came together, bringing the best works from 90 different galleries, to form the Art Basel fair, a celebration of the diversity behind their galleries, and a place for people who are interested in new and radical artwork to discover it. Art Basel was an immediate success. Although many people are conservative when it comes to the artwork they enjoy, sticking mostly to things they are familiar with, it turns out that Beyeler, Bruckner, and Hilt were correct in assuming that there were thousands of people out there with a voracious appetite for new and controversial things. These pioneers needed a place where they could gather and enjoy truly innovative artwork in a comfortable, close environment, rather than travelling from city to city and gallery to gallery continually. Art Basel Honk Kong 2018 Look Lateral In fact, even in this day and age, art appreciation tends to lean conservative. People hold famous old masters and revolutionary modern artists aloft, whilst dismissing modern artists for going too far, creating things that are too radical, too disruptive. Of course, it has always been this way: too many people only value the art they are familiar with, the art they grew up with. However a select few art connoisseurs have also always existed, ready to hunt out the latest innovative creations. And thanks to projects such as Art Basel, the number of sceptical conservatives is declining, and instead we are starting to see people who appreciate art in all its forms and embrace change. By bringing radical new artwork to the public, Art Basel is making the public more receptive to radical art, creating an atmosphere where more and more people are eager to view, fund, and purchase these creations. This, in turn, is helping to rocket artists forward, giving them a true opportunity to display their talents and creativity, free from the constraints of conventional art marketplaces. However, in this global age, an international art fair could not be reserved to one small city. Instead, Art Basel progressed from a single art fair in its hub in Switzerland, to an internationally located event, with annual fairs in Miami Beach and Hong Kong. Art Basel Honk Kong 2018 Look Lateral Their first Miami Beach show was in the 2000s, where they focused on introducing their Art Unlimited platform, moving beyond conventional exhibition booths by taking on an open-plan environment where art can be displayed freely, allowing a greater diversity of displays, expanding their fair to include every type of visual art possible, including vast installations and performances. They also launched Art Basel Conversations, where panellists such as art collectors, museum directors and curators, art critics, and the artists themselves discuss the art world in great depth. You will always come away knowing something new after one of these talks. Then came Hong Kong. In the early 2010s Art Basel Hong Kong was launched, attracting over 60,000 visitors, more than their inaugurations in Basel and Miami Beach combined! During their 2015 Art Basel Hong Kong show they worked alongside BMW to present the first BMW Art Journey, an initiative where they work together to support emerging artists worldwide, continuing their original mission. Art Basel Honk Kong 2018 Look Lateral By reaching out to bigger urban locations, Art Basel is putting itself on the map as one of the must-see art fairs for lovers of modern and contemporary art everywhere. And yet they make a point of showing strong commitment to regional artwork, encouraging galleries local to the general area of each fair to participate. Half of all the admitted galleries will be based in the same general area as the fair is being held. Next, in their 2016 Hong Kong art fair, they launched their Art Basel Cities Initiative, where they would focus on developing a cultural exchange with a partner city, providing a powerful connection between the cities where Art Basel holds a fair and the ones where it does not yet have a physical presence. This again reinforced their message that they are aiming to improve the art market for emerging artists of all backgrounds, everywhere in the world. Art Basel Honk Kong 2018 Look Lateral And their approach is working. This year, starting today, Art Basel Hong Kong begins. Running from the 29th to the 31st of March, this edition of the Hong Kong fair features 248 premier galleries from a grand total of 32 different countries and territories. And from each one of these geographic areas we see a vast array of diversity. Art Basel has chosen galleries that house artists of all walks of life, backgrounds, and interests, each one lending their unique, personal voice to their artwork. Art Basel exhibits the works of over 4,000 artists from around the world, bringing true variety to their events. If you are looking for a place where you can come and see some of the most cutting-edge international artwork being produced right now, as well as discover some amazing new talent local to Asia and Asia-Pacific, then Art Basel Hong Kong might be the right place for you. Not only that, but in addition to the modern and contemporary displays, you can expect to learn a lot about the area and its art history during this art fair. They go into great depth on the diversity of Asia and Asia-Pacific’s cultures and how each one has informed different art styles and trends throughout the years. These lessons, complete with display items representing different eras of Asian artwork, will really give you the footing you need to understand the culture and materials behind the different contemporary artists’ work. Art Basel Honk Kong 2018 Look Lateral The Galleries sector is presenting art from the world’s best modern and contemporary art galleries, displaying a wide range of visual art from the 20th and 21st centuries. These exhibitions come from galleries whose names you will immediately recognize, and include carefully curated displays from their finest contemporary and modern artists. The Insights element is presenting the projects that come from galleries based in the Asia and Asia-Pacific regions, representing artists from this vast and diverse continent. Featuring art from Turkey to New Zealand, this pushes the boundaries of what most people consider to be “Asian”, encouraging us to see this beautiful continent not only as divided by nations, ethnicities, and languages, but also as sharing a rich history which has informed the artwork of each different population. The booths at Insights include solo shows from amazing contemporary artists, art-historic displays offering a greater understanding of the region’s cultural background, and thematic exhibitions, focusing either on an art movement, a place, or a cultural and social trend that shaped the art world in Asia. Art Basel Honk Kong 2018 Look Lateral The Discoveries displays are a vital platform, giving voice to emerging contemporary artists. Normally people at this early stage in their careers are reclusive, focusing on iteration after iteration of their works, building it up. But although the concept of a “starving artist” is romanticized, the reality is that lack of exposure and funding really does hurt artists, resulting in reduced creativity and work output, or even in them leaving their work altogether. By providing this vital platform, Art Basel is nourishing the next generation of artists. Besides all this, there are several enormous installations and film projects which have been provided with the space they need in which to truly come to life. You will not be able to experience so many serious open-plan large-scale artwork in one place anywhere else in the world right now. Art Basel Honk Kong 2018 Look Lateral This year Conversations has, as always, a fascinating program, with talks offered on the state of the art market today, funding cultural production via commissions, collecting as the beginning of a personal journey, the role of museums in curating and restoring art today, as well as many personal, intimate talks by artists, both established and emerging. Art Basel Hong Kong truly promises to bring us the best the art world has to offer, providing a platform for art that we would ordinarily not see. Everything from enormous installations, to local historical pieces, to emerging artists, has a place at this powerful platform.
Hong Kong Art Week 2018

Hong Kong Art Week 2018

By Pietro Ferrazzi

Waiting for the opening of Art Basel Hong Kong, all the eyes of the contemporary art world cannot but look straight here, in this outpost of the Chinese regime, that will be conquered for a whole week by art collectors from all over the planet – and by their capital, of course

Here at the Hong Kong Convention Centre everything feels like a real eve, everyone is doing their best to set everything up for Tuesday’s super preview – for the VIPs of the VIPs –, that will hopefully force all gallerists to rapidly beef up their booths.
But even this year, just like its five past editions, Art Basel Hong Kong will overcome the anxiety of the day before, and will be welcoming tomorrow the Asian audience, more and more hungry for art, in its shiny dress, perfect for the queen of all Oriental art fairs. It’s Monday, amateurs and collectors have gathered here, between the Pearl River delta and the South China sea, and are patiently waiting for their turn to reach the desk and finally collect their VIP card.
Hong Kong Art Week 2018

Hong Kong Art Week 2018

We wait for them and we then follow them as they reach the fashion district, between Queen’s Road and Pedder Street, heading to the opening of the Gallery Night. It’s a venue we cannot miss, so we pick our camera and jump up the stairs of the building located at number 80. It just seems the right place, given the crowd waiting at the elevators, and each floor hosts a different exhibition. The first one is a real bang: The pictures by Wolfgang Tillmans presented by David Zwirner, a walk through the latest works and other historic pieces of this German artist who, award after award, has succeeded in heightening his pictures to a unique and universally recognizable form of art, and whose pieces are now worth more than hundreds of thousands dollars.
Hong Kong Art Week 2018

Hong Kong Art Week 2018

We then reach the next floor and we enter the Whitestone Gallery, filling two floors of the building, one of which dedicated to some of the astonishing glass art pieces realized by Dale Chihuly throughout more than fifty years of career. Both the lights and the reflections give the impression of being underwater, and they almost seem magical creations, if we just don’t look at the video placed at the end of the gallery, showing the whole process Chihuly uses to transform glass.
Arcangelo Sassolino - Warped Matter, Curved Time @ Pearl Lam Galleries Hong Kong- Hong Kong Art Week 2018

Arcangelo Sassolino – Warped Matter, Curved Time @ Pearl Lam Galleries Hong Kong

We take the stairs again, and we reach the recently opened Lam Gallery, reference point for all Asian collectors. The visitors give curious and fascinated glances at the works by Arcangelo Sassolino, the Italian artist – born in Vicenza in 1967 – who has turned glass, gum and fibre cement into his signature.
Ai Weiwei - Law of the Journey @ Tang Contemporary Art- Hong Kong Art Week 2018

Ai Weiwei – Law of the Journey @ Tang Contemporary Art

Ai Weiwei’s Law of the Journey, made of black PVC and based on the gigantic installation – more than 70 meters – already exhibited at the National gallery of Prague and at the Sidney Biennale, with its 258 migrants wrapped in life jackets, monopolizes the whole room of the Tang Contemporary Art, at the tenth floor, totally astonishing all visitors who walk in and don’t expect it to be there. On the walls and at the corners, we can admire more works by this Chinese artist and dissident – stacks of porcelain vases, self-portraits made with Lego bricks –, whose personal life, so tragic and complicated, might have turned him into a greater artists than just his works themselves.
Seoul Auction Hong Kong - Hong Kong Art Week 2018

Seoul Auction Hong Kong

We give just a quick look at the works of the artists belonging to the Hong Kong Seoul Auction House, here for a preview and ready to be auctioned off from 5 p.m. next Thursday, and then we move on to focus our attention on the porcelain sculptures and on the portraits by Yoshitomo Nara, spearhead of the Japanese pop art, well known all over the planet for its portraits of kids, and whose works are worth millions of HK$.
Hong Kong Art Week 2018

Hong Kong Art Week 2018

The fifteenth floor of the building hosts the powerful Hauser & Wirth Gallery, leader of the main art fairs worldwide and representing hundreds of artists including Martin Creed, Louise Bourgeois, Jenny Holzer, Dan Graham and Mark Bradford, whose works will be the lead of tonight’s solo exhibition. Abstract paintings, halfway between the pure ephemeral and the material traces of urban life, with incredibly fascinating colors – especially the blues and light blues.
Mark Bradford @ Hauser & Wirth Hong Kong - Hong Kong Art Week 2018

Mark Bradford @ Hauser & Wirth Hong Kong

We finally reach the seventeenth floor of the building, the top floor, hosting the Hong Kong gallery Ora Ora and its young artist Xiao Xu, here in person and very pleased as he takes pictures with the visitors in front of his paintings. His works awaken our curiosity but are not astonishing, but it is clear that this artist – born in Chongqing in 1983 and graduated at the Sichuan Fine Arts Institute – has something to say, something coming from his unconscious, between fantasy grandeur and gravity games. Collectors will decide whether to make him a successful artist or not.
The Artist Xiao Xu at Ora Ora Gallery - Hong Kong Art Week 2018

The Artist Xiao Xu at Ora Ora Gallery

Overturned by the jet lag, we find peace at a tavern a few streets down, where we finally sit and eat (decent) French cuisine and recharge our batteries to live this ride inside the contemporary world, already started but actually burning from tomorrow on. Stay tuned!
Art Basel Hong Kong 2018

Art Basel Hong Kong 2018

by Tiziana Maggio

Quick guide from our Look Lateral team

Art Basel Hong Kong 2018

Art Basel Hong Kong, Courtesy Art Basel

On March 29th the sixth edition of Art Basel Hong Kong 2018 (ABHK) will open its doors at the Hong Kong Convention Centre and we will be there.
Art Basel Hong Kong 2018

Art Basel Hong Kong, Courtesy Art Basel

Some 250 galleries from 32 countries will feature masterpieces and contemporary artworks, attracting artists, dealers and collectors from all over the world, confirming this city as one of the most attractive art destinations and the third-largest art auction market in the world, after New York and London.
Shinji Ohmaki - Art Basel Hong Kong 2018

Shinji Ohmaki, Courtesy Art Basel

The three-day show will offer to visitors seven sections: Galleries, Discoveries, Insights, Encounters, Kabinett, Magazines, Film. Also, as it happens in Miami and Basel, the main fair will also accompanied by concurrent exhibitions and events, like ASIA ONE and ART FUTURES.
Art Basel Hong Kong 2018

MC Majority Rule, Tunnel, Courtesy Art Basel

We look forward to seeing some multimillion-dollar works: Levy Gorvy Gallery will display the $35 million Willem de Kooning’s Untitled XII from Paul Allen’s private collection, while Lehmann Maupin will have Gilbert & George’s “Beard Junction” and Jeff Koons will wow visitors as usual with the enormous Bluebird Planter and the Swan at David Zwirner Gallery’s booth.
Luo Mingjun, Here and Now, 2016 - Art Basel Hong Kong 2018

Luo Mingjun, Here and Now, 2016, Courtesy Art Basel

Then, if we will be lucky enough, we could also have the chance to encounter the artists themselves, from Tracy Emin to Jeff Koons who will definitely seduce potential buyers’ attention.
10 cool things to do in Hong Kong

10 cool things to do in Hong Kong

By Giulia Cennamo

Ultramodern, shimmering and chic – Hong Kong’s cosmopolitan cityscape easily boasts some of the world’s best shopping and dining experiences in the world

But though there might be enough Luis Vuittons and Michelin-starred restaurants to drain even the deepest of wallets, there’s much more to Hong Kong than commercialism alone.
Art Basel Hong Kong - Look Lateral

Art Basel Hong Kong

Vestiges of British control, traditional Chinese culture, and a large international presence combine to make Hong Kong it one of the most unique—and coolest—places around. There’s always something new to discover within Hong Kong’s bustling streets. We’ve picked out a few of the coolest ones to get you started.

1. Ride the Longest Escalator in the World

Rest your weary feet from Hong Kong’s hilly streets and get a lift on the longest outdoor escalator in the world.
The longest escalator in the world hong kong - Look Lateral

The longest escalator in the world hong kong

The Central Mid-Levels is a 2624 foot bucket list worthy ride that links the Central and Western districts on Hong Kong Island, with many shops and dining stops along the way. Not only a touristy must-do, but very practical too.

2. Eat dessert first

Hong Kong is known for its cutting edge food concepts and The Dessert Kitchen is amongst one of the most creative. It is a trendy little cafe that sells nothing but unique Asian style treats, at just about any time of the day.
The dessert kitchen Hong Kong - Look Lateral

The dessert kitchen Hong Kong

That’s right. A kitchen dedicated solely to desserts. With masterpiece desserts, like the Blueberry Kiss, it is perfectly acceptable (& recommended) to skip the traditional dinner and replace it with a purely sweet one at a place where dessert always comes first.

3. Ride on a traditional chinese junk boat

Taking a Hong Kong junk boat ride will give you the second best skyline view (see #5 for the first), but this view is just an after thought compared to the junk boat ride itself. Aqua Luna features a traditional junk boat ride through Victoria Harbour that also coincides with the cities famous light show, the Symphony of Lights.
Aqua Luna, Hong Kong - Look Lateral

Aqua Luna, Hong Kong

4. Eat snake soup

In the Causeway Bay section of Hong Kong you will find Se Wong Yee, the tiniest eatery, with the menu out front completely written in Chinese, except for the significant bold lettering stating the sale of Snake Soup, an Asian delicacy.
Chinese snake soup Hong Kong - Look Lateral

Chinese snake soup Hong Kong

There were two options on the menu; just the plain old Snake Soup for 50 HKD ($6.50 USD) or the Snake Meal which includes the of duck’s liver-sausage.

5. Hong Kong’s best view

Though the view of the city skyline from the junk boat on Victoria Harbour (see #3) was pretty spectacular, there is nothing like the one from the Sky Terrace at The Peak.
Hong Kong's best view at the peak - Look Lateral

Hong Kong’s best view at the peak

It is the highest 360 degree viewing terrace in town and requires a steep tram ride along with several floors of escalators to get to the top.

6. Climb to the top of Big Buddha

Even though there are 268 stairs to reach Hong Kong’s Tian Tan, it is one of the top Things to do in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong's tian tian - Look Lateral

Hong Kong’s Tian Tian

Tian Tan is one of the largest sitting Buddha’s in the world and even though at 34 metres (112 Ft) feet tall, Big Buddha was perfectly visible from the ground level, it is hard to tell its true massiveness without getting up close and personal.

7. Ride in a cable car

Before actually climbing the stairs to Big Buddha you have to get to its location on Lantau Island and there aren’t many options.
Cable car Lantau island Hong Kong - Look Lateral

Cable car Lantau island Hong Kong

You can take a bus, make a strenuous hike uphill or ride the 3.5 mile Npong Ping Cable Car that suspends you high above the ground. Not like the typical street cable cars in San Francisco. At all.

8. Make an incense wish at a temple

In Hong Kong, as well as much of Asia, burning incense is done by worshippers as an offering with the belief that it attracts attention from the Gods or, in some cases, is food for the spirits that have passed prior. When you visit the Man Mo Temple a layer of smoke fills the room and coils incense hung from the ceiling.
Temples in Hong Kong - Look Lateral

Temples in Hong Kong

Though you can make incense wishes here, you can follow a different cloud of smoke to Po Lin Monastery where worshippers wave their enormous joss sticks: a bundle of incense costs 20 HKD ($2.50 USD) and you can make wishes of your own.

9. Eat at the cheapest michelin starred restaurant in the world

Tim Ho Wan is a hole-in-the-wall dim sum restaurant in Hong Kong that gained recognition after receiving a coveted Michelin star and therefore being known as one of the cheapest Michelin starred restaurants in the world. And it is cheap. Really cheap. Though they are well known for their pork buns, all their food is quite tasty.

10. Dine at a floating restaurant

The Jumbo Kingdom Floating Restaurant is an ornamental restaurant that floats. Duh.
Jumbo kingdom floating restaurant - Look Lateral

Jumbo kingdom floating restaurant

The eatery was built in the style of of an exquisite Chinese imperial palace. While you are there you may as well order the signature dish, the Flamed Drunken Shrimp which is prepared right in front of you.
Art Basel Hong Kong 2015

Art Basel Hong Kong 2015

The third edition of Art Basel Hong Kong 2015 closed: the quality of artworks has gotten better with each year

Max Spiegler has called it an excellent edition and we can’t help but agree. The oriental gallery selection, the sole protagonists of the previous Art Basel Hong Kong, has become stronger every year, so that the 150 remaining ones are really the best the market has to offer and show the best of Asian artists. The Hong Kong Convention Center was visited by thousands of people every day, not letting a single dull moment go by notwithstanding the particular choice of days (vip preview on Friday and open to the public from Sunday to Tuesday). Sales, fortunately, went well. Even if the most satisfied galleries are the ones on the third floor (where modern art prevails) and the Asian ones, proving the fact that another step is needed for oriental collectors to fully open up to western artists.
To know about the best artworks shown, and perhaps still unsold, please don’t hesitate to contact us.