all experiences are life-journeys that help us to grow - immerse, enjoy, and learn
Published February 7th 2013
The (art) works on Little Bourke
Little Bourke St. is where you will find Chinatown. It is a colourful and heady stretch of Chinese restaurants and shops, peppered with the occasional karaoke bar and Japanese/Korean restaurant. But traversing the length of Chinatown from Swanston to Russell Streets reveal special gems in unexpected places.
On the wall of an open parking lot on the corner of Corrs Lane
and Little Bourke St. is the mural of the most colourful and friendliest-looking dinosaur (or is it?) you've ever seen, right beside an ad for the Fad Gallery Bar, which is just around the corner.
A few metres up Little Bourke St., on the other side, is Croft Alley, a dodgy-looking narrow strip that is a dead-end, and is actually the back street of several restaurants right next to each other. Don't be afraid to explore this alley because here you will find some of the most interesting street art you've ever seen.
Never mind that it's in the midst of several rubbish bins, with the slight hint of an unpleasant odour wafting in the air. And do ignore some of the vandalisms put over the images; they certainly do not take away the beauty and magic of these works.
Get back out to Litte Bourke St. and walk up towards Exhibition St. until you see the massive Chinese arches flanked by two lions, on Cohen Place. This is the entrance to a small oasis of zen, where you can sit and stretch your legs, relax over a nice cup of tea, bought from the tea house right next door. Just a few paces ahead is the Chinese Museum; if you don't want to go in, the architecture of the building and the facade's decor are enough to satisfy your artistic sensibility.
So the next time you're walking down a street in the city, don't hesitate to turn into an alley that piques your curiosity - there are still lovely street art and funky bars waiting to be discovered. And always remember to look up.