It was a tough week overall with terrorist attacks in Boston, my sister’s hometown. The attacks plus tighter than usual deadlines at work almost brought me to the end of my rope. So it was quite refreshing to see a “TGIF”-style invite on Facebook for a little get together at Casa Capriz in Chai Wan, an artist’s haven in the industrial area aka. the last stop of the MTR’s Blue Island Line.
The Capriz part of the name refers to studio owner, Irene Capriz, pictured above, the lovely lady of Italian-Malay descent who came all the way to Hong Kong from Bologna, Italy, her hometown. The traditional lifestyle/retail space in Hong Kong’s more central districts maybe tight and expensive, but Casa Capriz’s roomy 2,600 square-foot showroom showcasing curated vintage furniture from around the world, is a breath of fresh air for those who are in a no-pressure mood to search of something different and with a curatorial eye. (Ie. not cheap metal, plastic, flat packed, and mass produced.)
Irene shares the space with Claudia Albertini, director of Platform China, and Paola Sinisterra (below) and Ignacio Garcia of the Tangram fashion label, to create a haven where one can go from trying out furniture, to perusing edgy art, while walking around in one of many Tangram clothes… again just a try. It’s a new way of experiencing shopping for a variety of things at one go while supporting independent creative initiatives.
This past Friday, the Chai Wan collective of artists and designers, known as Chai Wan Mei, organized a neighborhood shindig which included galleries like A0 Vertical Art Space, Latitude 22N, and YY9 Gallery. At Casa Capriz, a selection of erotic art curated by Platform China was on stage with kinky accessories by Sally Coco, a new line of lingerie from Tangram, and an amazing feast of fresh bread and pate from the bespoke bakers at Bread Elements.
The husband and wife team from Bread Elements, sharing their classic “Campagne” Loaf.
I was there with Time Out HK Editor and RTHK Radio Personality, Arthur Tam. We were fresh off our taping of his weekly show “From Top to Bottom” focused on queer issues locally and globally.
I met milliner, Jay Cheng, for the first time, whose studio was also in Chai Wan. Cheng’s hats were on sale and on display around the gallery and the space.
The biggest surprise of the evening was meeting theWanderlister+ reader, Norbyah, a cool mother of three, teacher, and an overall stylish lady… who like Irene, is half malay as well. She wore her market finds from Stanley Market. It’s lovely.
I had such a great time that night. For me a trip to Chai Wan is a creative re-charge, but for these artists and designers who work and live here… this is their everyday. And fingers crossed/pray to God, that the Hong Kong government does something to support all their endeavors.
Enjoy the rest of the photos!
Okay, so Chai Wan wasn’t the last stop. Arthur and I met up with DJ Angus Wong in Central to have a bit of classic Cantonese food at Lin Heung. (We were supposed to go to Ngau Kee, my favorite local cantonese dive, but this weekend they were closing shop and there was a line… so Lin Heung it is.)
I really miss Ngau Kee, but eating in Lin Heung is quite nice as well. The decor takes you back to mid-century life in Hong Kong. The food and sea-food is amazing as per usual. I love the Dim Sum here, but I think I prefer dinner where I can really appreciate the atmosphere and the old-style hospitality without the manic crowd.
Thanks to Chai Wan, Casa Capriz, and Lin Heung for being the light at the end of the dreary tunnel that was last week.