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Asian Americans For Bush-Cheney

National Museum of American History

Asian American Identity - Smithsonian Portraits of Encounter

Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center
Video by Voice of America http://www.voanews.com/english/news/usa/Asian-American-Artists-Explore-Their-Identity--130422658.html More info: http://apanews.si.edu/2011/05/17/portraits-of-encounter/ http://www.npg.si.edu/exhibit/encounter/ The Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery and the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program have collaborated to mount the Smithsonian's first major showcase of contemporary Asian American portraiture. Through the work of seven artists from across the country and around the world, the exhibition offers thought-provoking interpretations of the Asian American experience and representations against and beyond the stereotypes that have obscured the complexity of being Asian in America. This installation of Portraiture Now will feature seven artists, each of whom will show several works. The artists are: - Cindy Hwang (CYJO), New York, Beijing - Hye Yeon Nam, Atlanta and New York - Shizu Saldamando, Los Angeles - Roger Shimomura, Lawrence, KS - Satomi Shirai, New York - Tam Tran, Memphis, TN - Hong Chun Zhang, Lawrence, KS

Author Interview: Yiyun Li [in Asian American Literary Review]

Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program

To become a writer, Yiyun Li left behind everything familiar: her birth country (China), her first language (Mandarin), her family...

The post Author Interview: Yiyun Li [in Asian American Literary Review] appeared first on BookDragon.

Event Recap: “Gourmet Intersections: Asian-Latino Food Crossings”

Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program
This is an event recap of Gourmet Intersections: Asian-Latino Food Crossings (July 24, 2013). To view more photos, click here. The music playlist is also available here. Recap by guest blogger Pat Tanumihardja When you think of Asian-Latino fusion cuisine, Korean bulgogi beef tacos—the darling of the food truck world—will likely cross your mind. However, […]

Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program orientation video

Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center
Part of the "Welcome to Smithsonian" videos. This video introduces the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program.

Portraiture Now: Asian American Portraits of Encounter at the Smithsonian

Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center
Video by BBC America http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-14500419 More info: http://apanews.si.edu/2011/05/17/portraits-of-encounter/ http://www.npg.si.edu/exhibit/encounter/ The Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery and the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program have collaborated to mount the Smithsonian's first major showcase of contemporary Asian American portraiture. Through the work of seven artists from across the country and around the world, the exhibition offers thought-provoking interpretations of the Asian American experience and representations against and beyond the stereotypes that have obscured the complexity of being Asian in America. This installation of Portraiture Now will feature seven artists, each of whom will show several works. The artists are: - Cindy Hwang (CYJO), New York, Beijing - Hye Yeon Nam, Atlanta and New York - Shizu Saldamando, Los Angeles - Roger Shimomura, Lawrence, KS - Satomi Shirai, New York - Tam Tran, Memphis, TN - Hong Chun Zhang, Lawrence, KS

Asian Pacific American Program Collections

SI Center for Learning and Digital Access
Webpage featuring the Smithsonian's newest acquisitions such as posters, quilts, and costumes related to the story of Asian Pacific Americans. Viewers are invited to donate objects and submit comments.

Google Hangout for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center
What happens when you bring together Lisa Ling, Angry Asian Man, the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, and the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center? A seriously amazing conversation about Asian Pacific American Heritage Month! We're going to chat about the significance of APA Heritage Month and this year's theme, "I Want the Wide American Earth," and we'll take questions from you -- our supporters and fans. Send us questions by including #may1apa in your tweet, leaving a message on this event page, or emailing us at APAC@si.edu. Join us on May 1 from 3:00pm -- 3:45pm (EDT) for the Smithsonian's first Google+ Hangout. The video link will go live at the start time. You can watch via YouTube as these panelists participate in the Hangout. The Hangout will be archived on YouTube so you can watch it later at your convenience. Panelists include: * Konrad Ng, Director of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center. * Kiran Ahuja, Executive Director of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (WHIAAPI). * Phil Yu, the blogger behind Angry Asian Man. * Lisa Ling, journalist, writer, and host of "Our America with Lisa Ling." Moderator: Gautam Raghavan, Associate Director of Public Engagement at the White House. This Google+ Hangout is a partnership between the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center and the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. For more information about Asian Pacific American Heritage Month events at the Smithsonian, visit http://apa.si.edu/heritage You may be wondering: What is a Google+ Hangout? Google+ Hangout is a free video chat service from Google that enables both one-on-one chats and group chats with up to ten people at a time.

Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program

SI Center for Learning and Digital Access
The Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program (APAP) provides vision, leadership, and support for all Asian Pacific American (APA) activities at the Smithsonian, while serving as the Smithsonian's liaison to APA communities. Through exhibitions, programs, research, and collaborations, APAP reflects experiences of Asian Pacific Americans, their role in U.S. history, and empowers them by increasing their sense of inclusion in our national culture.

Pinback button with "Asian Americans for David Dinkins"

National Museum of African American History and Culture
A pinback button supporting David Dinkins 1989 New York City mayoral campaign. The background of the button is white. Red text at the top and bottom reads [Asian Americans for / David Dinkins]. At center there is an orange block with white accents. White lettering at the center of the block reads [AADD]. On either side of the block there are red Asian text characters. The back of the button has the manufacturer's and designer’s information and a metal pin with a clasp.

The Transcontinental Railroad and the Asian-American Story

National Postal Museum
2019 marks 150 years since the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad. The story of postal history in this country is very much one of...

Asian-American Superhero The Green Turtle Returns!

Smithsonian Magazine

Back in 1944, Chinese-American comic book artist Chu Hing created a superhero named the Green Turtle, who appeared in five issues of Blazing Comics before disappearing into the night. There were rumors that Hing intended The Green Turtle to be the first Asian-American superhero, but was prevented by his publisher. So in 2014, cartoonist Gene Luen Yang and illustrator Sonny Liew resurrected The Green Turtle, definitively establishing his Chinese-American backstory in a graphic novel called The Shadow Hero. Now, in celebration of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, the Green Turtle has returned and is starring in his own comic book, reports Charles Pulliam-Moore at i09.

According to a press release, the comic is being distributed at Panda Express restaurants along with the kid’s meals, or it can be read online here. “Sonny and I are so excited to work with Panda Express. Together, we created 'Shadow Hero Comics #1' to celebrate not just Asian Pacific American heroes, but all of the heroes in our lives,” Yang says in the press release. “A hero can be anyone who inspires us to never give up. We hope stories like ours will encourage young readers to embrace their own originality and never give up on themselves, no matter what the odds may be.”

Hansi Lo Wang at NPR reports that there were rumors that when Hing originally created the Green Turtle, he intended the character to be Chinese-American. But his publisher didn’t think readers would appreciate an Asian character while the U.S. was in the midst of a war with Japan. While the characters skin was printed in eraser-pink, Yang tells Wang that there are clues in the original comics that the Green Turtle was of Asian ancestry. “He almost always has his back turned toward the audience, so all you see is his cape,” Yang says. “When he is turned around, something is blocking his face. It's either hidden by shadow, or he's punching and his arm is in the way. Or there's a piece of furniture in the way.”

The subject of those comics is also a clue—the Green Turtle leads a group of Chinese people against occupying Japanese forces. When he revived the character in 2014, Yang—a MacArthur “Genius Grant” recipient whose graphic novels, American Born Chinese and Boxers & Saints were both nominated for the National Book Award—decided to give The Green Turtle an decisively Asian-American origin story. Pulliam-Moore reports that the characters's true identity is Hank Chu, a young man working in his family’s grocery store in the Chinatown of a fictional California city of San Incendio. While he doesn’t have super strength or the ability fly, The Green Turtle is able to dodge bullets and other projectiles.

Super heroes and their secret identities have long resonated with people from immigrant and minority families. That’s because, like super heroes, they must navigate different identities within the culture. “Every superhero has this superhero identity and a civilian identity,” Yang says. “A lot of their lives are about code switching. It’s about switching from one mode of expectations to another mode of expectations. And I really think that mirrors something in the immigrant's kid’s life.”

In the new comic book, The Green Turtle teams up with Miss Stardust, an alien from another planet who is also interested in protecting the citizens of San Incendio—and the Earth. The comic is set in the 1940s—during the golden age of comic books—and includes the kitschy villains of The Roller Rocket Gang, a squad of roller skating robbers.

Encountering the Asian American Experience at Portrait Gallery

Smithsonian Magazine

Portraiture Now: Asian American Portraits of Encounter seeks to explore what it means to be Asian in America through the works of CYJO, Hye Yeon Nam, Shizu Saldamando, Roger Shimomura, Satomi Shirai, Tam Tran and Zhang Chun Hong. The exhibit, a collaboration of the National Portrait Gallery (NPG) and the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program (APAP), opened today, August 12, at the Portrait Gallery. Konrad Ng, director of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program, shared his insights on the show via e-mail.

What can the works in the show tell us about being Asian in America?

I think the works start conversations about what it means to be Asian in America rather than offer a definitive interpretation. Indeed, the show offers a cacophony of ways of being-in-the-world. If there is a common theme that unites the experience, I would say how they treat identity as a complex negotiation as opposed to a being given, that “I am definitively X.”  The negotiation comes from how one can be rooted in a community, but not limited by it.

Is there a personal reason that you chose to explore the Asian American experience?

I appreciate good art and the show contains terrific work.  The Portrait Gallery and my program the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program see the “Asian American experience” as a vehicle for showing how portraiture is a language and a story. These artists use the form to express their experience and by doing so, start conversations about what it means to be American, the dynamics of world cultures, and their intersection.

What is a “Portrait of Encounter”?

For me, a portrait of encounter conveys the forces at work in telling the story of identity, that is, how we work on finding balance during our negotiation of things like: what to wear, perceptions and self-perceptions, our sense of home, culture, or the expectations of heritage and gender.

The show contains a wide range of media and unique interpretations of portraiture. Which pieces are your favorites and what about them stand out to you?

It’s hard to pick one. As a scholar of cinema and digital media, I’m immediately drawn to Hye Yeon Nam’s work. I love the edginess of Saldamando’s works. CYJO’s photographs are engrossing. I love the messiness of Satomi Shirai’s photographs. The way that Tam Tran ties a sense of elasticity with her identity is great.  The textures of Zhang Chun Hong’s work surprised me with its aggressiveness. Roger Shimomura finds a a productive balance between anger and playfulness.

The artists featured in the exhibit come from different Asian backgrounds as well as different geographic areas of the U.S.  How important was representing the unique Asian cultures when putting together the show? How important was representing the unique U.S. regions?

The artists were selected from a general call for submissions. Together, the NPG and the APAP created a shortlist based on the caliber of work and how the work would fit in the larger experience of the exhibition. During the process, I wanted us to curate a set of encounters such that the journey for the viewer would be a transformation in their understanding of Asian America; not to arrive at a conclusion, but to start a conversation about that that means. I think we were able to do that.

“Portraiture Now: Asian American Portraits of Encounter” is open now through October 14, 2012 at the National Portrait Gallery.

View a gallery of the photos below.

Image by Image © Shizu Saldamando. Carm's Crew, 2009, Shizu Saldamando. Saldamando explains that her work “is an investigation into different social constructs and subcultures seen through backyard parties, dance clubs, music shows, hang-out spots, and art receptions.” (original image)

Image by Image © Tam Tran. Stripe Tease, 2009, Tam Tran. Tran says, in her artist’s statement, that her varied self-portraits seek to “take on multiple sets of identities that challenge viewers to decipher for themselves ‘Who am I?’” (original image)

Image by Flomenhaft Gallery, New York. Image © Roger Shimomura. American vs. Japs 2, 2010, Roger Shimomura. Shimomura responds to misconceptions of the Asian American community by “battling those stereotypes or, in tongue-in-cheek fashion, becoming those very same stereotypes” in his work. (original image)

Image by Image © Hong Chun Zhang. My Life Strands, 2009, Zhang Chun Hong. “According to Eastern culture,” explains Zhang “a young woman’s long hair is associated with life force, sexual energy, growth, and beauty… it has become a part of my identity.” (original image)

Image by Image © CYJO. Daniel Dae Kim, 2007, Cindy Hwang (a.k.a. CYJO). In her artist’s statement, CYJO writes, “I enjoy capturing both the silent, direct, and informational physiognomy of each individual and the textual portraits that are obtained through interviews.” (original image)

Image by Image © Hye Yeon Nam. Drinking (Self-Portrait), 2006, Hye Yeon Nam. “As a woman and a Korean immigrant in the United States,” Nam explains in her artist’s statement “I have struggled to adjust to my new culture… My work reflects my desire to resist such pressure by using physical dissonance to reveal different perspectives upon the ‘norm.’” (original image)

Asian Pacific American Program Introduction

Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage
Curator video of Phil Nash, APA curator [Catalog No. - CFV10245; Copyright - 2010 Smithsonian Institution]

Exploring Asian American History with "I Want the Wide American Earth: An Asian Pacific American Story"

Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service
In the first exhibition of its kind, the Smithsonian celebrates Asian Pacific American history across a multitude of incredibly diverse cultures, and explores how Asian Pacific Americans (APAs) have shaped and been shaped by the course of our nation’s history. I Want the Wide American Earth, created by SITES and the Smithsonian's Asian Pacific Amerian Center, is as much a chronicle of the struggles of APAs as it is a story of their resilience and achievement. The exhibition carries the narrative to the present day and celebrates APA individuals and communities that continue to flourish and contribute to every arena...

Oral history interview with George Tsutakawa, 1983 September 8-19

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 119 pages An interview of George Tsutakawa conducted 1983 September 8-19, by Martha Kingsbury, for the Archives of American Art's Northwest Oral History Project, in Seattle, Washington.
Tsutakawa speaks of his youth in Japan and Seattle, and the importance of a bicultural family and education on his development; the influence of European art magazines and American movies in Japan; family members who were influential; his early sculpture; Alexander Archipenko; the Asian art community in Seattle; teaching at the University of Washington School of Architecture; Bauhaus philosophy; the Seattle Public Library fountain; his World War II experiences; art and World's Fairs; fountains he has sculpted and his feelings about them; and permanency in art.

Oral history interview with Seong Moy, 1971 Jan. 18-28

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 69 p. An interview of Seong Moy conducted 1971 Jan. 18-28, by Paul Cummings, for the Archives of American Art.
Moy speaks of his childhood in Canton, China; his immigration to Minnesota; the art scene in Minneapolis and Saint Paul in the 1930s; his education; the influence of his teachers, including Cameron Booth, Hans Hofmann, and Vaclav Vytlacil; the influence of Stanley William Hayter; being introduced to printmaking by the WPA art project in Minnesota; his service as a photographer in World War II; his teaching philosophy; and the art scene in Provincetown in the 1970s.

Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program Multimedia

SI Center for Learning and Digital Access
Webpage displaying videos, photos, interactives, and audio from the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program.

Oral history interview with Andrew Chinn, 1991 August 9

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 56 pages An interview of Andrew Chinn conducted 1991 August 9, by Matthew Kangas, for the Archives of American Art Northwest Asian American Project.
Chinn speaks of his childhood; the formation of the Chinese Art Club in Seattle in the 1930s; exhibitions of his work in the 1940s; the Chinese and Western styles of his paintings; his teaching career; his friendship with Fay Chong; and his opinion of the Asian influence in Mark Tobey's work.

Exhibition catalog for (en)Gendered Visions: Race, Gender and Sexuality in Asian American Art

Archives of American Art
Exhibition Catalog : 8 p. : ill. ; 28 x 22 cm. Exhibition catalog, eight pages, for (en)Gendered Visions: Race, Gender and Sexuality in Asian American Art at the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center. The exhibition was curated by Margo Machida.

Dana Tai Soon Burgess Dances the Asian American Experience

Smithsonian Magazine

Who is Dana Tai Soon Burgess? He is an internationally recognized choreographer. He's a contemporary dance performer. He's the son of an Irish-Scottish American father from upstate New York and a Korean-American mother from Hawaii. He's the director of Washington DC's first Asian-American dance company.

His analysis of identity through movement will kickoff the Smithsonian's celebration of Asian Pacific Heritage Month. Burgess and his troupe will perform "Dancing Through The Asian American Experience," at the American Art Museum's McEvoy Auditorium. The event will take place tomorrow, May 8 at 6 p.m.

Burgess took a quick rehearsal break to speak with me about the upcoming performance and his thoughtful take on identity.

You're performing three original works, "Chino Latino," "Hyphen" and "Island." What kind of story does each tell?

All three of them are about the Asian American experience -- just from different perspectives.

"Chino Latino" is based on the presence of Asians in Latin and South America for over a century. When Asian communities move to the Untied States, they are often closely aligned to Latino communities.

"Hyphen" integrates the work of video artist Nam June Paik. It has to do with Asian Americans and other hyphenated Americans—African Americans, Irish Americans—and that place in between those two worlds where identity resides.

"Island" is a work in progress. It's based historically on Angel Island, which was the immigration station on the west coast where Chinese, Koreans and South Asians predominantly came through. When they arrived, they were held and questioned before they were either allowed into the United States or sent back.

Why do you choose to use video art, like Nam June Paik's, as part of your work?

It's another layer of imaging that I'm interested in. How can our contemporary technology add to the emotional landscape? I'm interesting in telling emotional stories about humanity and about relationships.

As you perform these stories of multiple identities, who are you performing as?

A lot of art is generated out of the subconscious and makes its way to the conscious realm. The personas are all characters within myself, characters that come from growing up and from friends.

What should audiences pay attention to when they see your work?

We work very hard on a unique fusion of Eastern and Western movement. They'll see a lot of gestures combined with larger modern dance movements. I hope that the pieces will resonate with them so that they ponder their own life experiences questioning their identity.

What are your thoughts on May being Asian Pacific American Heritage Month?

I think that it's wonderful to have a celebration in May. The Asian-American diaspora experience is so varied. Many different Asian Americans have had a profound effect on the American landscape. I hope people celebrating with us in May will continue celebrating with us throughout the year.

Celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

Smithsonian Archives - History Div
Featured in Torch, July 1993

Chef Jeffrey Adams reaches for the spice ladle as Florence Pope, right, a Smithsonian nurse; Richard Ahlborn, a curator in the National Museum of American History's Division of Community Life; and other staffers wait with anticipation for a delicious lunch at the National Museum of American History's recent Wok Day. To help celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, Daka restaurants held a Wok Day at Natural History and one at American History.

How the First Asian American Marine Officer Overcame Racism

Smithsonian Channel
As a lieutenant, Chew-Een Lee faced an uncommon obstacle, his men had never before seen an Asian Marine. From: UNCOMMON COURAGE: BREAKOUT AT CHOSIN http://bit.ly/1gLYbCv

Tour Schedule for the Exhibition “I Want the Wide American Earth”

Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program
This schedule will be updated frequently as we get more venue confirmations. If you are interested in hosting the exhibition or bringing it to your city, click here for more details. There are two copies of the banner exhibition available to be toured. The first list includes confirmed or tentative venues, the second list has […]
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