Temple Mall Presents "The Art of the Game: Behind Mah-jong Tiles", Century-old Bone-made and Rare Hand-carved Tiles on Show

  • Showcase of rare tiles and paraphernalia across the ages in collab with “The Art of Mah-jong Craft Studio” to explore the secrets of mah-jong as intangible cultural heritage
  • Discover anecdotes behind the evolution of mah-jong game through ages
  • Deluxe mah-jong sets up for grabs in “Good Hand, Good Luck” game from the first to the fourth day of CNY

HONG KONG, Dec. 31, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Dubbed as the quintessence of Chinese culture, “Playing Mah-jong” is in the Lunar New Year repertoire and itself a popular pastime in Hong Kong. Mah-jong tiles also have its historical values, with this time-honoured handicraft having witnessed the evolution of popular culture through ages. As part of its effort to perpetuate local culture, during this Lunar New Year, Temple Mall will take us on a wonderful journey into “The Art of the Game: Behind Mah-jong Tiles”. Jointly organised with “The Art of Mah-jong Craft” studio, the campaign narrates the origin and evolution of the acclaimed intangible cultural heritage of mah-jong tile-making. On display will be a precious collection of exhibits, including the rare century-old mah-jong tiles hand-carved out of ox bones; Japanese bamboo-backed tiles dating back to the 1970s; and hand-carved sets from Hong Kong whose production has already ceased, alongside rare catalogues and books offering a multifaceted look into the art of the game.

Temple Mall Presents “The Art of the Game: Behind Mah-jong Tiles”

Besides the exhibition and Insta-worthy installations themed on mah-jong, there is also a set of “Temple Mall X The Art of Mah-jong Craft” Mah-jong tiles designed exclusively for the event by “The Art of Mah-jong Craft” studio. Taking cues from traditional Chinese festivities as well as landmarks in Wong Tai Sin, the suite pushes the aesthetic and craftsmanship envelope of mah-jong tiles with a modern palette to usher in the new year.

Evolution of mah-jong revealed in 20+ precious types

The charm of this ancient game will be decoded culturally and aesthetically in the quadripartite “Mah-jong Art” exhibition on 1/F Temple Mall North. The show comes courtesy of “The Art of Mah-jong Craft“, the studio founded by Ricky Cheung Sing-chung, one of Hong Kong’s last mah-jong craftsmen, and his daughter Karen Aruba, an illustrator. The studio strives to both showcase the sophisticated beauty of the mah-jong craft and ultimately promote it across the world. It will be a fascinating exploration into the creation of tiles through the ages and in different materials, such as paper, cow bones, bamboo, wood, brass and bakelite. It will shed light on the origin of mah-jong and how it gradually transformed from a card game into today’s formats, and from a suit of only nine numerals into a codified system of Dots, Strings, Characters and Honours, together with eight Flowers and Seasons tiles. Don’t miss out the history and fun facts of mah-jong.

There are myriad variations in the game of mah-jong. In addition to the Cantonese style, the exhibition showcases an array of versions across the world: the Malaysian style with an extra set of animal tiles; the Vietnamese and American versions with 16 and eight joker tiles respectively; and the Japanese mah-jong characterised by the “Dora” (bonus) tiles. What’s more, you can learn about the production process of tiles from crafting to polishing via the tools and machines on show, in addition to discovering stories behind Fuk Hing Lung Mah-jong Factory and the glorious past of mah-jong-manufacturing industry in Hong Kong. Be dazzled by the rare vintage hand-carved mah-jong tiles and the set designed by Karen and hand-carved by Master Cheung for the event, with the eight Flower tiles featuring the cultural and storied motifs of Wong Tai Sin, showing the inheritance of craftmanship.  

Three-metre tall mah-jong installation, “Love in a Tile” DIY Fai Chun stickers & “CNY Paper Art” Workshop

Wishing to gain the upper hand in mah-jong games? From 30 December 2022 to 5 February 2023, crank up your luck by circling the three-metre tall giant mah-jong installation at Temple Mall North. Those who want to spread the luck to their loved ones can do so with one-of-a-kind Fai Chun stickers created in the “Love in a Tile” WhatsApp sticker booth. There you can combine your own image with auspicious messages and frames of your own choices. You can also create your festive home decoration at the “Chinese New Year Paper Art: Handcrafted Fai Chun” workshop jointly presented by Temple Mall and Zhan Xiao Quan.

Limited deluxe mah-jong sets up for grabs by “Mah-jong Handling” Masters

In addition to gift redemption, Link members with any same-day e-spending can join the “Good Hand, Good Luck” game on 1/F Temple Mall on the first four days of the Chinese New Year (22 to 25 January 2023). On each day, the first three Link members who have drawn the “Thirteen Orphans” hand and arranged them in correct sequence with excellent tile handling skills within the time limit can take home a “Temple Mall X The Art of Mah-jong Craft Deluxe Mah-jong Set”.

Terms and conditions apply. The programme is subject to change without prior notice.

Temple Mall “The Art of the Game: Behind Mah-jong Tiles” Event

Date: 30 December 2022 to 5 February 2023

Time: 11am to 8pm

Venue: 1/F, Temple Mall North

For more details about the event, please visit

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About Link

Link Real Estate Investment Trust (Hong Kong stock code: 823), is the largest REIT in Asia. It is managed by Link Asset Management Limited, a leading real estate investor and asset manager in the world. Since its listing in 2005 as the first REIT in Hong Kong, Link REIT has been 100% held by public and institutional investors. It is a constituent of the Hong Kong securities market benchmark Hang Seng Index, as well as a component of the Dow Jones Sustainability Asia Pacific Index, the FTSE4Good Index Series and the Hang Seng Corporate Sustainability Index. From its home in Hong Kong, Link Asset Management Limited owns and manages a diversified portfolio including retail facilities, car parks, offices and logistics assets spanning from China’s Beijing, Greater Bay Area (Hong Kong, Guangzhou and Shenzhen), and Yangtze River Delta centred around Shanghai, to the UK’s London and Australia’s Sydney and Melbourne. Link Asset Management Limited seeks to extend its portfolio growth trajectory and grasp expansion opportunities in different markets in pursuit of sustainable growth.

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About The Art of Mahjong Craft

Under the theme of’The Art of Mahjong Craft’, the first mahjong craft studio located in Jockey Club Creative Arts Centre (JCCAC), was setup and founded by the hand-carved mahjong craftsman Mr Ricky Cheung, and the illustrator, Karen Aruba with her art brand Karen Aruba Art. Its mission is to enhance the mahjong cultural story, combining the family’s legacy, exploring innate aesthetics of mahjong. The joint-effort between the father and daughter has gradually bridged the gap between craftsmanship and modern art, generations to add new values to the mahjong tiles, transforming an old product into modern art with unique features through creative designs. The studio inspires youth to recognise this traditional culture and to reinvent the passion with arts and crafts, and preserve intangible cultural heritage.

In this recent years, ‘The Art of Mahjong Craft’curated several exhibitions by Karen Aruba despite the pandemic; widespread media interviews both local and overseas are covered. It has striven to raise the awareness of mahjong craftsmanship in overseas and Hong Kong market, and increase the popularity of mahjong design.



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