Shenzhen: Making a Pig’s Ear of Spring

After kicking off the year with many visits to regional Guangdong it was time to re-aquaint myself with the one and only Shenzhen, the city that still holds a special place for me even though I’ve now lived longer in Guangzhou. This time I try something different which is to catch a bus. Having discovered the joys […]

Guangzhou to Hong Kong: The Through Train

It is more common for me to visit Shenzhen. It is less common for me to visit Hong Kong unless I am doing so for official reasons. It is equally more common for me to travel by train from Guangzhou to Shenzhen and that is my intention, until that is I learn of an exhibition […]

Hodgkin in Hong Kong

This year marks the 40th anniversary of my first visit to Hong Kong when the tap water was brown and green and white stripy Tristars perilously glided into Kai Tak. Apparently it is also the length of time some local collectors have been purchasing Howard Hodgkin paintings. Taking that into consideration it is astonishing to […]

Dongguan: Tomorrowland

Disneyland for adults: What kind of imagery does that conjure up? A while ago Dongguan was officially busted for its sex dens and the poor women (whether they chose to work in the sex industry or not) humiliated before the media. So does the city deserve its reputation as nothing more than a seedy halfway […]

Speech Judging in Shangri-La La Land

Earlier this month I was asked to judge an event called the USAD (United States Academic Decathlon) at the very salubrious Shangra-La Hotel in Pazhou. The idea was to judge students from many schools all over China. To break the ice, some of us held a dinner together a few weeks prior in another part […]

Guangzhou: Xiaozhou Art Village

Sometimes my students’ really do come up trumps when it comes to info on people or places I may not know about (SanMao) and again here with this mysterious art enclave tucked away in the depths of Haizhu. No metro station so I am reliant on bus. My student mentions a blog by a mysterious Swiss Geographer […]