8 must-see art exhibitions in Hong Kong this May

With Hong Kong art month upon us — did you get your Art Central tickets yet? — artists from around the world are slowly returning to the city with new solo and group art exhibitions.

With dine-in at restaurants extended until 10pm, gyms and sports grounds reopening and cinemas running again, there’s more than enough to do this month. Now, I understand the need to pack your schedule to the brim with things you haven’t been able to do and places you haven’t been able to visit since January. But in between all of that, remember to slow down, take a breather and check out the newest art exhibitions in town.

Hong Kong art exhibitions to see this May 2022

Meet Keigo’s Family

Photo: Shout Art Hub & Gallery

When: 13 April to 18 May

Until mid-May, Shout Art Hub & Gallery is showcasing the work of Japanese artist, Keigo. An Instagram sensation known as @k5fuwa on the platform, Keigo began drawing in 2012 and has, to date, created over 3,000 illustrations. Most of his work depicts personified animal characters encountering humorous real-life conundrums. With published books in Japan, China, Taiwan and Korea, Keigo has garnered fans from all over the world and continues to give viewers a daily dose of positive energy with his humorous artwork.

“Meet Keigo’s Family” features up to 90 prints and figures, among them four large framed prints with 10 editions each. The remaining 80 prints are hand-signed by the artist.

Shout Art Hub & Gallery, Shop 109-112, 1/F, Hysan Place, 500 Hennessy Road, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, +852 2503 1222

It’s time for Plan b.

When: 15 April to 13 May

After her successful show in JPS Tokyo in 2021, artist b.wing is once again represented by the gallery for her first solo show in Hong Kong. Running until the middle of May, “It’s time for Plan b.” addresses b.wing’s feelings towards the deteriorating Covid-19 situation in Hong Kong, with the hope that her works will bring support to the local community during this difficult time.

Using light to insulate her figures, including her signature character A-boy, in space, b.wing transports the viewer to a more peaceful mindset to alleviate their worries. The watchful gazes of her subjects are shy, soothing and set in an optimistic undertone with an amicable quality.

JPS Art Gallery, Shops 218-219, 2/F, Landmark Atrium, 15 Queen’s Road Central, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2682 6216

Weigh All Tears

When: 17 March to 29 May

William Kentridge’s first solo exhibition in Hong Kong, “Weigh All Tears”, presents the Johannesburg-based artist’s works from the past five decades. The exhibition takes its title from a six-metre-wide triptych in the show, which depicts silhouetted figures against a collage of maps of Africa and other archival documents. Through mixed media including film, performance, theatre, drawing, sculpture, painting and printmaking, Kentridge parses and questions historical records and navigates viewers to a more conscious seeing and knowing.

Highlights include the titular ‘Weigh All Tears’ piece, as well as four new tapestries named ‘Orator’ (2021), ‘Spinner’ (2021), ‘Mechanic’ (2020) and ‘Colleoni’ (2020). These hand-woven mohair tapestries are created in collaboration with Southern weaver Marguerite Stephens and her weaving studio outside Johannesburg. Standing against the backdrop of a Chinese political roadmap of the Hebei Province, the laser-cut structures create a space of multiple times and spaces.

Hauser & Wirth, 15-16/F, H Queen’s, 80 Queen’s Road Central, Central, Hong Kong, +852 3958 7188

Bad Timing

When: 2 April to 4 June

In Xper.Xr’s second exhibition with Empty Gallery, the experimental composer and performer presents his new works after nearly three decades. “Bad Timing” sees Xper, a radical individualist and anti-authoritarian, returning to his long-deceased painting practice with a focus on society portraiture.

Working with publicly available photographs, Xper defaces his subjects with deposits of synthetic pus, mucus and other substances. Like an experimental hazing ritual, Xper shows the toxic influencers of certain public figures, instigated by Hong Kong’s recent history of political strife.

The exhibition is open by appointment only — to secure your slot, email contact@emptygallery.com.

Empty Gallery, 19/F, Grand Marine Center, 3 Yue Fung Street, Aberdeen, Hong Kong, +852 2563 3396


Photo: WOAW Gallery

When: 19 April to May 14

Currently running at WOAW Gallery in Central, “REFLECTIONS: PARTLY FICTION” is a group exhibition featuring the works of John Armleder, Daniel Crews-Chubb, JPW3, Jordy Kerwick, Leelee Kimmel, Spencer Lewis, Chris Martin, Cristina de Miguel, Julian Schnabel and Pat Steir. As the title alludes, the show explores the intentions of the artists to tell a truth, their truth or their idea of the truth.

The exhibition is curated by WOAW founder Kevin Poon and New York-based curator, art advisor and filmmaker Matt Black. Black launched the REFLECTION series with a show in Seoul, Korea, in 2020 and followed it up with two more shows in Tokyo, Japan, in 2021. “REFLECTIONS: PARTLY FICTION” is his first show in Hong Kong, in collaboration with WOAW Gallery.

WOAW Gallery, 9 Queen’s Road Central, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2965 2799

Through the Lenses

When: 26 March to 31 May

On view until the end of May, Alisan Fine Arts is hosting a group exhibition on four international female photographers, Cai Wenyou, Chu Chu, Barbara Edelstein and Isa Ho.

The daughter of renowned international artist Cai Guo-Qiang, New York-based photographer Cai records the daily life of her family through her lens, unveiling the emotional and cultural connection between generations.

Chu Chu, an established cross-media artist based in Hangzhou, China, is recognised for her photography and calligraphy works influenced by Chinese philosophies and historical texts.

American artist Barbara Edelstein merges Western and Asian sensibilities through her interpretations of nature and life forms, as well as the usage of photography and Chinese ink on Western paper.

Hailing from Taiwan, Isa Ho focuses on digital and contemporary photography. Her signature work features surrealist images on an aluminium board, challenging the documentary aspect of photography and at the same time addressing social concerns.

Alisan Fine Arts, 2305 Hing Wai Centre, 7 Tin Wan Praya Road, Aberdeen, Hong Kong, +852 2526 1099

Pink and Yellow

When: 2 April to 21 May

Arts Projects Gallery is representing Amsterdam-based artist Peter Orsag, recognised by the art community as Digestor, in his debut international solo exhibition. Orsag is known for his portrayal of pop icons, in particular the characters from The Simpsons, which he re-contextualises to evoke specific emotions. Using a purist approach to his work, Orsag’s lines, colours and elements are thoughtfully composed. The bright dyes of his paintings exude a sense of profound simplicity, ultimately drawing the viewer in.

Arts Projects Gallery, Vita Tower, 29 Wong Chuk Hang Road, Hong Kong, +852 2523 5688

Thesis/Antithesis: Part 2

When: 28 April to 5 June

From the end of April, Ora-Ora is presenting Part 2 of its two-part exhibition “Thesis/Antithesis”. Curated by Sovereign Art prize finalist Gary Mok Wai Hong with support from actor and singer Kris Fan, the show features the works of contemporary Chinese artists Cai Yaling, Xu Hongxiang, Yan Heng and Zhang Yexing.

“Thesis/Antithesis: Part 2” channels the language of the past and focuses on the force of memory and how it affects what’s to come. At the exhibition, viewers are encouraged to address their own experiences and personal history.

Ora-Ora, 105-107, Barrack Block, Tai Kwun, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2167 8735

(Lead and featured image: WOAW Gallery)


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