Header image courtesy of Wyndham Social
33 Wyndham Street might ring a few bells for seasoned Hongkongers who like to frequent Central and the LKF neighbourhood in their spare time. Once the gathering hub for locals, tourists, and workers alike, this location has played host to many concepts and businesses over the years. Join us as we take you through the history of LKF Tower, recently rebranded into 33 Wyndham Street, and how it became the newest and hottest art and cultural space in Central, Wyndham Social.
Wyndham Street has always been one of the main roads on Hong Kong Island. In early colonial Hong Kong, the street was originally called Pedder Hill, named after the first harbour master of Hong Kong, Lieutenant William Pedder, who had built his office above Wyndham Street as we know it today. Located in the centre of commerce in the nineteenth century, Wyndham Street has seen its fair share of multi-cultural exchange. It is only fitting that its post-colonial legacy remains diverse and culturally aligned, particularly at number 33.
33 Wyndham Street, formerly LKF Tower, has been known to city dwellers as many things in the twentieth century. Its front façade located in the heart of Lan Kwai Fong and its food and beverage offerings. You might remember the hotel that inhabited floors in the tower, the convenient location for tourists looking to dive into the vibrant night life in Hong Kong. Some of you might even remember the public workspace that brought together many talented minds in one room, located at the Wyndham Street entrance of the building.
No matter how much time has passed, 33 Wyndham Street remains the cultural melting pot in many ways for the local and expat population. One of the ways this diverse community can embrace the cultural convergence in Hong Kong is to do so through artistic expression, which is why 33 Wyndham Street’s present-day usage is a fitting legacy to its rich history.
Central has no shortage of art and cultural spaces, especially since many have popped up across the district in recent years. One only has to look to the renovated Tai Kwun, the revitalised Central Market, or the Fringe Club at the Old Dairy Farm Depot not too far from Wyndham Street’s junction with D’Aguilar Street. So how does Wyndham Social, located at number 33, fit into this vibrant art and cultural scene?
Wyndham Social was established earlier this year with a mission to create a space for conversations and connections of tenants in LKF Tower and the neighbourhood surrounding it. To achieve this symbiotic relationship, Wyndham Social provides a platform for emerging local artists to make their mark in the local art scene and a prime location for cultural enthusiasts to engage with this work. The new face of 33 Wyndham Street is a hip art and cultural hub designed for collective exchanges between individuals and communities.
Warren Chiu is a local artist that lives and works in Hong Kong. Originating from an artistic family, Chiu took painting lessons from his uncle, a renowned Chinese painter from Lingnan School. His practice soon developed into sketches, caricatures, and illustrations depicting life in the city. Oil painting is Chiu’s most recent venture into a new medium, and was the medium with which most displayed works were made at his exhibition, “Fading Familiar Faces,” hosted at Wyndham Social.
Another Hong Kong-based artist, Chongling Dong, was also exhibited at Wyndham Social earlier in October. Chongling’s main artistic practices capture the iconic culinary and transportation scenes in Hong Kong. Showcasing 10 prints from her “Gourmet City, Hong Kong” collection, the exhibition displays mouth-watering, artistically-rendered images of authentic local cuisine.
Although the ground-floor exhibition space is generally the gathering spot for artists and cultural enthusiasts, the rest of the building also houses a wide range of restaurants— including a German fine dining destination and the popular trattorias. Some of the higher floors overlook Mid-Levels and are perfect for conferences and receptions, or if you want a different environment to complete your day’s work.
Some of you might be familiar with Hong Kong’s iconic Goldfish Market located in Tung Choi Street. The bags of vibrantly coloured goldfish displayed along the street inspired local artist, Angel Hui, to investigate and challenge the common usage of plastic bags and the idea of Tung Choi Street as an outdoor, makeshift aquarium.
A continuation from her earlier showcase during Art Basel, “Embroidery on Plastic Bags: Hong Kong Goldfish Street,” “Angel Hui's Aquarium” showcases the collaborative ability of tradition and contemporary found items in a colourful reimagining of a craft and historical street foundational to the culture of Hong Kong. You can find the exhibition filled with embroidered goldfish on plastic bags at Wyndham Social from now till 3 January 2023. Catch this space of aquatic wonder.
Following “Angel Hui's Aquarium,” the ground-floor exhibition space of Wyndham Social will once again be transformed for another solo exhibition. Celebrated for her intricate works of ceramics, renowned local artist, Sara Tse, will be showcasing her works from 17 January till 27 March 2023. Coinciding with Art Month in March, curator David Chan and organisers at Wyndham Social are excited to present Tse’s intricate works in the near future.
From April to June 2023, Wyndham Social will undergo renovations before receiving more arts and cultural enthusiasts in Hong Kong in the coming summer. Stay tuned for more exciting exhibitions and events!