By THE NATION
H Gallery, Bangkok
Established in 2002 by American Ernest H Lee, H Gallery specialises in contemporary art forms, painting, photography, and textiles, with a main focus on emerging Thai and Asian artists. Once you make your way past the entry that is lined with various tropical plants to a centuryold Anglo-Thai wooden building, you’ll find yourself surrounded by tranquillity. The gallery is currently hosting the “New and Recent Paintings” exhibition, which displays the works of Thai artist Mit Jai Inn, until July 30.
Where to stay: Cacha Hotel
After you have checked out the artscene, check into the hip Cacha Hotel. Artist Peap Tarr painted pictures of elephants with New Zealand and Khmerinspired motifs in the main lobby area. While P7, an iconic illustrator and street artist in Thailand whose works have been exhibited worldwide, created a painting of a mythical creature called “Singha” in the rooms using bright hues.
Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery, Auckland
The Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery, formerly known as the Waitemata City Arts and Cultural Centre, is located in the historic Lopdell House building. Apart from its West Auckland crafts and pottery that reflect cultural identities, the gallery also offers contemporary art and design programmes, as well as spectacular views of the surrounding area. It won the 2015 Auckland Architecture Award (Public Architecture) and was shortlisted for the 2015 World Architecture Festival.
Where to stay: Hotel DeBrett
Located right in the centre of New Zealand’s largest city, Hotel Debrett is a boutique hotel with an eclectic blend of architectural arts, combining elements of neoclassic, art deco, and modernism. As for the rooms, a New Zealand flavour is retained in artefacts and artwork used for decoration, in addition to contemporary pieces, fifties styling, and art deco elements.
Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa, Cape Town
Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa is Africa’s largest contemporary art museum, showcasing several artists’ works from across the continent with themes ranging from tribal art to colonial structures deconstruction. Originally built in 1921 for industrial purposes, the enormous carved grain silos are a must-visit and give the museum its cathedral-like feeling. You’ll also find a bookshop, a restaurant, reading rooms, and an amazing rooftop sculpture garden.
Where to stay: The Silo Hotel
Occupying the six floors above the museum is The Silo Hotel whose lobby walls are adorned by Mohau Modisakeng’s Ditaola series and commissioned pieces by Jody Paulsen, “Must be the Rain” and “So Exotic”, and Frances Goodman’s “Blue Velvet and Hooded Lady I, II & III”. Each of its 28 suites has bubblelike windows, designed by British architect Thomas Heatherwick that overlook breathtaking vistas of the South Atlantic Ocean, Table Mountain, and the city.
Tate Modern, London
The National British Museum of Modern Art, more familiarly known as Tate Modern and set in a former power station along London’s Southbank, houses one of the world’s most complete modern and contemporary art collections. Art pieces of major artists of the twentieth century, such as Andy Warhol, Pablo Picasso, and Salvador Dali are displayed here.
Where to stay: South Place Hotel
In nearby Moorgate, Conran designed the South Place Hotel, a hotel worth a visit if you like sculptures, paintings, photographs, or video installations. A set of Lichenstein-inspired comic strip style prints by John Vincent Aranda can be seen on the brasserie’s wall. Above the bed of each room hangs a print of a work by an artist of the local Hoxton Art Gallery.
Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, ArRayyan
Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art is designed by French architect Jean-Francois Bodin. This one-of-its-kind museum in the region presents modern Islamic arts and artefacts dating back as early as the 1840s. Painting and sculpture dominate the vast permanent collection of works assembled over several decades by Sheikh Hassan bin Mohamed bin Ali Al Thani. It also runs educational programmes and supports research related to modern and contemporary Arab art.
Where to stay: W Doha
A quick ride to the city centre gets you to W Doha. The hotel’s interior has an artistic and playful design. Art 29, which spans the hotel's 29th floor, is an expansive platform dedicated to showcase the works of emerging local, regional, and international artists.