Neon Gets Its Due

For decades, neon has defined Hong Kong’s cityscape, bathing its skyscraper canyons in rainbow hues that have provided a memorable backdrop to films like Chungking Express and The World of Suzie Wong – and inspiration for classics such as Blade Runner. But Hong Kong’s neon signs are starting to vanish, which has prompted the city’s […]

Posted in: Art and Design, Asia Pacific, Heritage and Preservation, History, Public Space by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on Neon Gets Its Due , , , , ,

Miniature Monuments

It is hard to overstate the extent to which neon has shaped Hong Kong’s landscape, its streets awash in hues of red, yellow, green and blue, not to mention the way the city is perceived abroad. Bolstered by memories of Blade Runner and Ghost in the Shell, both of which were inspired by Hong Kong, […]

Neon History

In the middle of the 1980s, after lobbying from businesses and Chinese community leaders, a series of decorative gates were built to mark the various entrances to Montreal’s Chinatown. One of these is found at the corner of de la Gauchetière and Jeanne-Mance, the western end of the district. But to me, the real signal […]

Posted in: Architecture, Art and Design, Canada, Heritage and Preservation, History by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on Neon History , , , ,

Photos of the Week: False Moon, Real Moon

“Tribute in Light,” a September 11th memorial, seen from Brooklyn. Photo by Chris Arnade It’s almost Mid-Autumn Festival here in Hong Kong, a time of year when people gather outside to light lanterns and stare up at the full harvest moon. As with all Chinese festivals, there’s a story behind it — in this case, […]

Posted in: Art and Design, Asia Pacific, Canada, Environment, United States by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on Photos of the Week: False Moon, Real Moon , , , , , ,

Neon’s Slow Exit from Hong Kong

Yue Hwa in 2005. Photo by choco_late The Yue Hwa Chinese Products department store has stood at the corner of Jordan and Nathan roads for decades — and for decades, so did its big neon sign, a sentinel that marked the passage north into the seedy streets of Yau Ma Tei and Mong Kok. Sometime […]

Posted in: Art and Design, Asia Pacific, Canada, Heritage and Preservation, History, Society and Culture by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on Neon’s Slow Exit from Hong Kong , , , , ,

Wing’s Nouilles Chinoises

Wing’s Chinese Noodles, owned by the venerable Lee family for half a century, is housed in a sturdy-looking warehouse built in 1826. All of the fortune cookies served in Montreal restaurants — bilingual and kosher, naturally — are made here. Every time I pass by, the sweet smell of fresh egg rolls lingers in the […]