Have you ever wondered where that painting hanging in your hotel room came from? How about the perfect copy of a Van Gogh you saw at your favourite restaurant? Chances are, they may have originated in the little village of Dafen, a suburb of Shenzhen, China.
Stroll the streets here and you’ll see many original artworks, plus some uncannily fine reproductions of many famous paintings. Artists in residence are trained in the art – and make no mistake, this is an art – of copying from a young age. The skill has been passed through generations of craftsmen, bringing (mostly not their), original artwork to the masses. Catching one mid-masterpiece is quite common here, and most of the artists do not mind if you stop to watch a while.
As well, Dafen is a wonderland of artist supplies, basically everything you’d need to do some masterpieces of your own. Amongst the many shops selling artworks are stores stuffed with all manner of brush, book, canvas, pigment, and so on, to the delight of artist and would be artist alike.
It’s difficult not to be inspired here, either in decorating your own space with artwork you can purchase direct from the artists, or to create art yourself with the myriad paints, brushes, pencils, canvasses, and so on displayed in the supply shops.
If reproduction art is not your thing, there’s also numerous artists selling their original pieces. We picked up a set of two original ink brush paintings, framed, to remember our very special day amongst the artists of Dafen.
Shenzhen is just across the border from Hong Kong, so it’s quite easy to include a trip to Dafen Artist’s Village on your next visit to Hong Kong.
Find out more here…