Why Art Travel?


By: Meaghan McGurgan

Just this weekend I got back from a wonderful weekend in Kota Kinabalu to visit my friend, Juno Kim,  who was having an art show. She's a travel blogger who has recently become rather famous for the amazing photographs she's taken around the world. I had never been to KK before and I was quite excited to go. My mom wanted me to see the beautiful wildlife. My friends wanted me to hit the clubs. I wanted to hit the beach with a margarita, but what ended up happening was so much better than a beach- I got to discover an emerging art scene that I knew nothing about.

The title of this blog is "Why Art Travel". People travel for many reasons: to expand their horizons, relax, see new things. Very few people specifically set out on the road to discover new art. But I think more people should. I had a wonderful time in Sabah seeing things, and meeting new artists I would have never had a chance to talk to otherwise.

We went to the KK Jazz Fest on Saturday night. It's in its 8th year and is an international event where jazz musicians from Borneo and abroad come together to play jazz, have fun and dance. It was hosted at... wait for it... a covered tennis court at a Resort. What an usual space to have a concert in! But it was a great space for an outdoor festival. It was a beautiful event, very well put together with high production values and excellent musicians. I was thinking - why doesn't Hong Kong have an event like this? KK doesn't have decent public transit and they have a wonderful outdoor jazz festival! We need more public events like this in HK.


Of course, a majority of my time was spent in the art gallery with my friend, meeting visual artists and members of the KK art community at her exhibition. I loved hearing their stories; I loved hearing about their emerging street art scene and how public art seems to be the way in KK. But... interestingly there isn't a theatre in KK yet or a venue to host such kind of events. It's truly an emerging art market- what an interesting find in this modern world. And something I would have never explored had I stayed beach side with that margarita.

So the next time you travel, whether it's to Borneo, Bangkok or Berlin, seek out their art scene, see something new, talk to the artists!  You won't be sorry. You'll learn something new and make contacts in a foreign country. Who knows, maybe we'll collaborate on a KK--->HK project in the future.


Related articles:

art travel, asia


No comment at the moment.

Post New Comment