We are excited to announce the opening of Karen Aruba Studio in Jockey Club Creatives Arts Centre (JCCAC) in September! As the brand Karen Aruba Art is celebrating its 5th anniversary this year, Karen Aruba Studio has come into live – an impressive milestone considering the restraints of the global situation. The studio is driven by Mahjong Craftsman Ricky Cheung, and fully supported by his daughter Karen Cheung, who is a Hong Kong-based illustrator.
The opening of the studio is another step in the rebirth of this family business. Karen’s grandfather setup the ‘Fuk Hing Lung Mahjong Factory’ in 1963 and experienced a range of ups and downs before finally closing in 2009 with the loss of a number of jobs for the family. Karen, with the help of her father, has kept the ‘Art of Mahjong Craft’ spirit alive with a number of ventures in the past five years, with the new studio the latest effort to revive this old tradition with a modern twist.
For the artist’s family, mahjong has a much deeper connection. While the mahjong manufacturing industry is unlikely to come alive again in Hong Kong, Karen is committed to preserving Hong Kong craftsmanship and family ties alive through her illustrations and creative art with mahjong features.
The studio under the theme of ‘The Art of Mahjong Craft’ aims at adding new values to the mahjong tiles, transforms an old mahjong product into modern art, adding unique features and technology through custom designs.
“There are a lot of differences between Hong Kong traditions and those in overseas markets,” Karen says. “We can do better and more to drive mahjong craftsmanship to become a real signature of Hong Kong culture.”
The studio is located in the Jockey Club Creative Arts Centre (JCCAC) in Shek Kip Mei, and shares a space with partner EBriel Studio – an American artist who introduces the ‘ArtMaterialist’ project that incorporates anthropology, art history, and material culture from a contemporary perspective. An interesting collaboration with different identities and art features.
Studio visit to understand mahjong craftmanship by appointment on Sat pm.
Karen Aruba x EBriel Studio
L6-15, Jockey Club Creative Arts Centre (JCCAC)
30 Pat Tin Street, Shek Kip Mei, Kowloon