Troubling Borders: An Anthology of Art and Literature by Southeast Asian Women in the Diaspora

(Troubling Borders book trailer by UWashingtonPress on Youtube)

Alone and used,
I find strength to bear the storm that will come and cleanse my land,
Replenish my trampled soil.
And when they come again,
I will welcome them with tides and storms of thunder and lightning.
And they will never set foot on my sacred land again.
– Yer Yang, “Virgin Land, Virgin Body” Continue reading

The Worlds of Bernice Bing

(“The Worlds of Bernice Bing – Lenore Chinn Interview” from YouTube by DSLRshooter108)

The Worlds of Bernice Bing, offered an interesting contrast of another film The World of Suzie Wong which implied stereotypical images that most modern educated Asian women love to hate. However, Bernice Bing’s story offers a different view of the Chinese American experience. She has been trying to assimilate both of these cultures since childhood, then involve into the art movements of the SF bay area in twentieth century.

 Bernice Bing, with her painting Dusk, 1987, Oil on Canvas (source:queercontemporaryart)

Bernice Bing, with her painting Dusk, 1987, Oil on Canvas (source:queercontemporaryart)

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Miki Yui: Small Sounds, the Cosmos

(Excerpt from Accompaniment for A-O-I-E-U by Cardero Gala through Youtube)
Sitting on the chair, Miki Yui faced to the mixer on the table and concentrated adjusting the sounds with both hands. The sound was from the mixer and from the surroundings, from toy-instruments and found objects which were set up by Rie Nakajima. Yui was so focused on composing the small sounds as if she was weaving fabrics. The experimental music from the environment she was “weaving,” however, intriguingly with the dynamics as Noh, although she managed the sounds simply with digital and analogue equipment. This live performance was composed with different ideas and artistic core of Yui and of Nakajima. The performance A-O-I-E-U however worked as a dialogue between both artists and the surroundings and generated something new, at Experimental Intermedia in New York in 2012. Continue reading

Malina Suliman: For Free Expression Despite Social Threats

The right of free expression, as well as free speech, is human right. No matter women or men. Here is CNN’s Mallika Kapur interviewed Malina Suliman, an Afghan woman graffiti artist who, despite social threats, pushes for free expression. (“The Taliban Have A Plan For Me… “from Wrath0fKhan on Youtube)

Art of Kara Walker

“A lot of my works have been about the unexpected…”  — Kara Walker at Art21, 2003.

( by Art21 on Youtube)

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Karen Walker, Darkytown Rebellion 2001, cut paper and projection on wall, 14 x 37 ft. (4.3 x 11.3 m), Collection Musee d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean, Luxembourg

I really love Kara Walker’s works. Especially her light projection and video, film, and performance. Like her wall-sized murals and cyclorama, Kara Walker employs light projection to cast shadows and create all-encompassing environments for viewers. In Darkytown Rebellion Walker applies paper-cut silhouettes to the wall and then washes them with vibrant light from colored transparencies on several overhead projects placed on the floor of the gallery. Viewers are further involved with this installation as their shadows are also cast onto the wall as they walk through the space. In this way, visitors literally enter the narrative and the history it suggests through their own silhouettes. Continue reading

Theresa Hak Kyung Cha: Her Story Will Be Continued

 “I want to be the dream of the audience.” – Cha’s manuscript of “A Ble Wail (1975)

A Ble Wail, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, solo performance at the Worth Ryder Gallery in Berkeley, 1975. (©Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, photo courtesy of Trip Callaghan)

A Ble Wail, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, solo performance at the Worth Ryder Gallery in Berkeley, 1975. (©Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, photo courtesy of Trip Callaghan)

Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, born in south Korea, studied in the U.S. and France, received her M.F.A. from U. C. Berkeley in 1978 and worked at Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive. On November 1982, six months after her newlywed, only one week before her book Dictée published, Cha was tragically murdered by a stranger. However, the solo exhibitions and retrospective for Cha, rivetingly, continue appearing at art institutions all over the world. Her reputation has continued to grow.[“Dictee- choreolab Dictee- choreolab DNA” By Soomi Kim from Youtube]

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Trinh T. Minh-ha: The Infinite Reflection Between Mirrors

(“Reassemblage: From the Firelight to the Screen” by walkinthaprospects on Youtube)

Still-image of film A Tale of Love. Produced and directed by Trinh T. Minh-ha and Jean-Paul Bourdier. Photo © Trinh T. Minh-ha

Still-image of film A Tale of Love. Produced and directed by Trinh T. Minh-ha and Jean-Paul Bourdier. Photo © Trinh T. Minh-ha

The image of this mirror reflects another mirror’s reflecting of the other mirror’s reflection… The endless reflective images between the mirrors, is one of the major concepts of Trinh T. Minh-ha’s works. Born in Vietnam, the prolific writer and artist Trinh studied composition, literature and ethnology in Vietnam, the Philippines, France and America. Her insightful cross-cultural and educational backgrounds profoundly contributed to her cross-disciplinary art practice. In her artworks and writings, naturally, Trinh offers multiple perspectives which have challenged the conventional and western notions. Continue reading

Ai Weiwei: Life is in Danger Everyday

Ai Weiwei talks about his concept: (“Ai Weiwei: Life is in danger everyday” by Louisiana Channel)

Ai Weiwei and Coke Cola Urns: The Democratizing or Commercializing of Art?

Ai Weiwei, Neolithic Culture Pot with Coca-Cola Logo, 1992, Neolithic pot with acrylic paint, 12” x 13.125”. Photo: Courtesy of the artist

Ai Weiwei, Neolithic Culture Pot with Coca-Cola Logo, 1992, Neolithic pot with acrylic paint, 12” x 13.125”. Photo: Courtesy of the artist

Ai Weiwei’s works often questions the exchange value of the cultural product in the global capitalistic system. One of the example is “Neolithic Culture Pot with Coca-Cola Logo.” Coca Cola as an art object easily brings us back to Andy Warhol’s concept: art belong to the pop. Warhol’s Pop art establishes the model that brought art to the public eye, not just for the elite. That pop culture can be art is not only revealing the commercial value but also to a certain degree, the democratic preference. Continue reading

Anna May Wong, and Chinese Style in 1920s

(These Foolish Things, lyrics written by Eric Maschwitz to contribute to Anna May Wong, Video clip edited by AnnaMayWongSociety on Youtube)

“A cigarette that bears a lipstick’s traces…An airline ticket to romantic places…And still my heart has wings…These foolish things remind me of you…” Romantically linked to Anna May WongEric Maschwitz composed the lyrics of These Foolish Things (Remind Me Of You) expressed his yearning for her when he went back to the U.K.

Anna May Wong , the pioneer Asian actress emerged in international movie industry. Although heavily under recognition of her talent at that time, Anna May Wong demonstrated her dignity and strength on big screen and presented her leading characteristics as a chic, stylish flapper and most importantly, in real life an independent and capable Asian beauty instead of a stereotypical submissive one. Continue reading