Hubert Burda Media

What to see during art week

Art Basel in Hong Kong has unleashed a frenzy of events around the city. Here are six you shouldn't miss.

A painting by Zhang Xiaogang being exhibited at M+ Sigg Collection: Four Decades of Chinese Contemporary Art

M+ Sigg Collection: Four Decades of Chinese Contemporary Art

M+ Sigg Collection: Four Decades of Chinese Contemporary Art, which runs February 23 to April 5 at ArtisTree, features the yet-to-be-realised M+’s trove of Chinese contemporary art. When the exhibition opened overseas last year, it was called Right is Wrong, reflecting the way many works critique the Chinese political, social and cultural landscape. Though M+ drew accusations of censorship when it opted for a less politically charged title for the Hong Kong show, the substance of the exhibition remains unchanged.

Shen Wei

Shen Wei

Shen Wei: Dance Strokes

Shen Wei is famous for his dance and performance art, but he’s also an oil painter – and Shen Wei: Dance Strokes, running March 20 to April 4 at Asia Society Hong Kong Center, is the first major solo exhibition of the China-born American artist’s work in Asia. Shen got his start in modern dance and oil painting at the same time, but it was only after he moved to New York that he began to develop his brush skills. He views his large paintings as extensions of dance, which makes the Asia Society’s lush, serene compound an ideal fit for this exhibition: along with the paintings, the show will include outdoor performances of Shen’s choreography.

The Maid by Joyce Lung Chuet Ying

The Maid by Joyce Lung Chuet Ying

Afterwork at Para Site

Venerable non-profit art space Para Site in Quarry Bay adds a sobering touch to the Art Week circus with Afterwork, which looks at Hong Kong’s domestic workers and their stories of migration, exploitation and displacement. The show, which opens March 19 and runs till June 16, draws from 27 artists, including legendary photographer Fan Ho and former domestic helper Xyza Cruz Bacani, whose street photography has won her international attention and a new career in the US.

Body by Tracey Emin

Body by Tracey Emin

I Cried Because I Love You by Tracey Emin

Lehmann Maupin and White Cube team up to present I Cried Because I Love You, a new show by British artist Tracey Emin, spanning both galleries. Though it may be hard to believe, given her towering stature in contemporary art, this is Emin’s first solo exhibition in Greater China. For this show, from March 21 to May 21, she uses painting, embroidery, neon and bronze sculpture to explore the idea of narrative disclosure, drawing on subjects that are tied up with her personal history. Think of it as a mid-career moment of self-reflection.

An installation by Thomas Canto at Art Central

An installation by Thomas Canto at Art Central

Art Central

In a way, Art Central’s launch last year marked Art Basel in Hong Kong’s entry into the big leagues: it finally had a proper satellite fair. Art Central returns to its big-top tent on the Central Harbourfront for another edition, but it isn’t content to be a mere sideshow. This year’s fair, March 23-26, features three ambitious curated projects: Media x Mumm, a new-media exhibition; Roundtable x 4A, a series of presentations and discussions hosted by Sydney’s 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art; and Screen x Experimenta, a film sector curated by Hong Kong’s Experimenta. Five large installations will find a home among the fair’s 100 galleries, including Growth, a specially commissioned 12-metre-long installation by Indonesia’s Dwi Setianto.

A Vhils work in Hong Kong

A Vhils work in Hong Kong

Debris by Vhils

After chiselling a portrait into the facade of the Nan Fung Mills in Tsuen Wan ahead of its transformation into an art and culture centre, Portuguese street artist Vhils returns to Hong Kong for an exhibition on the roof of Central Ferry Pier 4, which runs from March 19 to April 4. Debris brings together works created through drilling, sculpture, billboard collages and neon lights to reflect the changing character of Hong Kong’s streets. Beyond the pier, Vhils also transforms a tram into a moving art work.