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Things to do in Shanghai: Nine Indie Art Galleries

Nine indie artsy things to do in Shanghai

With art galleries showcasing almost every medium imaginable, there is no shortage of things to do in Shanghai if you are an inveterate culture vulture. Here are nine small, specialized independent gallery spaces to check out this summer.



Capsule Shanghai

Tucked away at the end of an alley, from the city’s hustle and bustle is Capsule, one of Shanghai’s newest contemporary art galleries. Opened in October 2016, the gallery is set in a quaint 1930’s garden house, where visitors can ceaselessly experience and enjoy art. Exhibitions feature contemporary art created by a diverse group of established and emerging artists, and often range from animated oil paintings to live music performances. Capsule also serves as an art laboratory, focusing on the creative journeys of artists and its influence on the evolving contemporary art world.

Where: Capsule Shanghai  1/F, Building 16, Anfu Lu 275 Nong (near Wukang Lu) 安福路 275 弄 16 号 1 楼
When: Tues-Fri 10am-5pm, Sat-Sun 12 pm-5pm



boutique art gallery don gallery in shanghai.

Don Gallery

Founded in 2007, Don Gallery is an art space originally located in a historic 1920’s apartment in the center of Shanghai. In the past few months this popular art gallery has moved to its new location along the West Bund, where it will continue to create cutting edge art. It strives to transform thecontemporary artscene as it collaborates with a number of foreign and Chinese artists. Throughout its years, the gallery has been able to build a rather dynamic space that showcases several art exhibitions annually, in addition to its active involvement in community events.

Address: Don Gallery 3/F, 2870 Longteng Lu (near Fenggu Lu) 龙腾大道2870号3楼
Hours: Tues-Sun 10am-6pm


Leo Gallery

Spread across two spaces in Ferguson Lane, Leo Gallery is a well-established art gallery situated in the Former French Concession. According to Modern Painters Magazine, it has been featured as one of the “Best 500 Galleries Worldwide”, recognizing its unique take on art. The gallery specializes in contemporary fine art with many of its exhibition programs promoting both Asian and European artworks. From interactive installations to traditional paintings, the space is presented with a diverse collection of piecesthat will appeal to all audiences. Besides its rotating exhibitions, Leo Gallery also collaborates with a number of commercial and educational institutions to create various public art projects. Some of these include Shanghai Times Square and a handful of public and private schools.

Address: Leo Gallery 376 Wukang Lu (near Taian Lu) 武康路376号
Hours: Tue-Sun 11am-7pm

Twins Art

Owned and managed by twins Cara and Celine Zhuang, Twins Art is a gallery focusing on Chinese contemporary art and design. The twins have been active members of Shanghai’s contemporary art community, and have thus established a space for cultivating new talent. Every few months new exhibitions produced by young artists are organized, showcasing the intersection of art with everyday life. The venue also hosts a series of art talks and workshops as part of its efforts to make art accessible to all.

Where: Twin Art 1086 Yu Yuan Lu (near Jiangsu Lu) 愚园路1086号
When: Tues-Sun 10:30am-6:30pm




Leo Xu Projects

Leo Xu Projects is a gallery space that showcases the work of young artists from or living in China. Under the direction of Shanghai-based curator and writer Leo Xu, the gallery offers a dynamic blend of shows and events featuring art pieces using a variety of media. Much of its art focuses on the new media and the current socio-political climate of the 21st century as to create a dialogue across disciplines and cultures. The three-story gallery space has also been known to host the city’s best opening parties so be sure to check their website for updates.

Address: Leo Xu Projects Lane 49, Building 3, Fuxing Xi Lu (near Taolin Road ) 复兴西路49弄3号
Hours: Tues-Sat 10am-6pm, Sun 12pm-6pm



FQ Projects

Located in the heart of Shanghai in HuaiHai Fang in a typical Shanghai lane, FQ Projects specializes in supporting young and developing contemporary artists. The five-floor gallery has previously been involved in a number of international fairs across the world, and has even been featured by a few notable news sources. In addition to its constantly rotating exhibitions, FQ Projects also collaborates and hosts many public events that range from artist panel talks to afternoon tea discussions.  Whether you are a curator, collector, or merely just a visitor, FQ Projects welcomes all audiences to come and appreciate its art. To enter be sure to ring the doorbell outside the gallery’s gate.

Where: FQ Projects  House 76, 927 Middle Huaihai Lu (near Nanchang Lu) 淮海中路927弄淮海坊76号
When: Tues-Sun 10am-6pm



1933 Contemporary

As a former gallery located in the M50 district, 1933 Contemporary is a contemporary art space now set in a former slaughterhouse and factory. The building itself showcases Shanghai’s historic Art Deco architecture with approximately 400 square meters of exhibition area. Through close collaboration with art experts and curators, the gallery exhibits art pieces produced by both emerging and established Chinese and international artists. Many young artists have fostered and launched their careers from here, and have since then become prominent figures in the Shanghai art scene.

Where: 1933 Contemporary  3/F, 1933, 611 Liyang Lu (near Shajing Lu) 溧阳路611号1933老场坊1号楼
Hours: Wed-Sun 10:00am-5:30pm



Arario Gallery Shanghai

As part of a broad network operation originating from South Korea, Arario Gallery has been ranked among one of the best galleries in China. Its contemporary art shows represent diverse groups of emerging artists from across China, India, and South East Asia that contribute to Shanghai’s growing art scene. In addition, the multi-story space collaborates with a number of local art museums and institutions to create innovative projects and exhibits. Withcurrently over 30 different Asian artists, Arario strives to support new talent as part of its goal to expand the art market in Asia and abroad.

Address: Arario Gallery No. 7, Lane 890, Hengshan Lu (near Yuntaishan Lu) 衡山路890弄7号
Hours: Tuesday-Sunday 10am-7pm




Bank Mabsociety

Focusing on contemporary art and culture from China and abroad, BANK Gallery serves as the studio space of the curatorial and creative collective MABSOCIETY. It hosts a variety of temporary exhibitions throughout the year from live performances to abstract paintings. The gallery gets its name from its former location at the historic Bank Union Building along Shanghai’s Bund but has since moved to a new space offAnfu Lu. Many of its exhibitions serve as part of larger research projects, often in collaboration with international artists, galleries, curators, and institutions. In addition to its many exhibitions and shows, BANK also hosts a number of local events throughout the city including movie screenings, art lectures, and even public art displays.

Address Bank Gallery: Building 2, Lane 298 Anfu Lu (near Wukang Lu) 安福路298弄2号楼
Hours: Tues-Sun 10:30am-6:30pm


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