explorASIAN Festival Blog

Thursday, May 29, 2008

NEW: explorASIAN FRIENDS & FAMILY Day - May 31 - 11am to 5pm

explorASIAN will be presenting a free fun filled day of performances, arts and crafts, and more at the Vancouver Museum.


Vancouver Museum, 1100 Chestnut Street (Vanier Park)
Saturday - May 31, 2008
11am to 5pm
FREE Event | FREE Parking

Featuring performances by:

12:30 pm & 3:00 pm - Award Winning Elvis Impersonators: Aaron Wong & Adam Leyk
1:10 pm - Master Wilson Wu (kungfu demo)
1:30 pm - International Champions of Magic Rod Chow & Company
3:30 pm - Kam To Tai Chi Chuan Association (tai chi demo)
4:00 pm - Vandna Sidher Bharata Natyam Classical Indian Dance
4:30 pm - Kathara Dance Theatre

11 am to 2 pm - DJ Trevor Chan
2 pm to 5 pm - DJ MissBliss

Children's Activities:
- Asian Canadian History Scavenger Hunt
- Mehndi painting by Pauline Basi
- Caricatures by Geoff Wong
- Free surprizes

Participating Organizations:
- Lang’s Mongolian Acupuncture
- Powell Street Festival Society
- Taiwanese Canadian Cultural Society
- UBC Department of Asian Studies (KUNGQU)
- C3 Korean Canadian Society
- Scripting Aloud
- Dr. Lyla May Yip Traditional Chinese Medicine
- Master Wilson Wu Kungfu Ocean Academy
- 411 Seniors Centre Society
- Kam To Tai Chi Chuan Association
- Raymond Chow, Artist
- Canadian International Dragon Boat Society

Click here for more details about explorASIAN's FRIENDS & FAMILY DAY

*PLEASE NOTE: There is a typo error on the printed version of the Family Day poster. The time should read 11am instead of 11pm.

NEW: explorASIAN 2008 Closing Celebration: DHARMAKASA Concert & CD Launch - May 31 - 8pm

Presented by explorASIAN

H.R. MacMillan Space Centre Auditorium
1100 Chestnut Street (Vanier Park)

FREE parking

Ticket info:
$10.00 / person
General seating

Please contact Diana Stewart-Imbert at to purchase tickets in advance. Telephone 604.253.6292

Tickets also available at the door

Dharmakasa is a collaboration of four Vancouver-based musicians who perform on a variety of very unique instruments, from the ancient to the recently invented. At the heart of this innovative group are Alcvin Ramos, recognized shihan (master) of the shakuhachi flute and Andrew Kim, inventor of unique hybrid instruments. Both are of Asian descent. They are joined by Juno award nominee, Cameron Hood, on electric bass and Steve (Shambunata) Daniluk on drums.

These experienced artists have come together to create a sound that ranges from fiery shamanic dance music to meditative soundscapes and that fuses bold modern elements with the musical traditions of Japan, India, Africa, and Australia.

Dharmakasa has performed to great success at numerous festivals and events including opening for Anouska Shankar at Vancouver’s Chan Centre and for the Yoshida Brothers in both Vancouver & Victoria this May. Dharmakasa has been featured on CBC Radio and Television.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

NEW: Etch-YOUR-Sketch 2! SKETCH ON! Comes to Richmond! - May 29 - 7:30pm

Kwantlen Polytechnic University
8771 Lansdowne Road, RIchmond
(behind Lansdowne Mall)
$5/ticket + $1.00 service charge for Students only (from any educational institution with valid student identification - Student ID card needed to pick up tickets)

$10/ticket + $1.00 service charge - general public

Wild, ZANY, Gut-aching, peeing in pants - FUNNY! An evening of hilarity, camaraderie and just plain ol' fun and laughter!

Buy your ticket by May 23rd and be entered to win a pair of tickets to VACT's summer production of The Odd Couple by Neil Simon!

All tickets purchased online must be picked up at the Box Office. No tickets will be shipped and mailed out. Box Office opens at 6:00pm. Tickets will also be made available at the door. Cash only at door.

Purchase tickets online at

Winning Sketch Teams from Etch-YOUR-Sketch 2! SKETCHOFF!#$%!! will venture to Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Richmond to perform their winning sketches to the people of Richmond and their lower mainland friends. Here is your chance to catch another night of wild crazy laugh-out-loud mayhem comedy.

Both Vancouver shows were SOLD OUT so don't delay - get your tickets now!

For more information, visit or telephone 778.885.1973.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

NEW: Vince Mai Project - May 29 - 9:30pm

You may know Vince Mai by the sound of his trumpet or his compositions in Canadian film, television, radio concerts and even jingles. In fact if you turned on CBC radio this morning, you heard themes he composed for the Early Edition.

Well.. he has a musical group that will be performing at The Yale Hotel - 1300 Granville Street from 9:30pm-1am. Admission is FREE.

They'll be playing original tunes, some Latin-flavoured Jazz and Smooth jazz. You can find music samples at his website: The band features Brent Gubbels, Daryl Jahnke, Pepe Danza, Brad Turner, Tim Proznick and Timmy Fuller (TDaddyMack).

Friday, May 23, 2008

NEW: Book Launch and Reading by ANDY QUAN - May 29 - 7pm


A new book by Andy Quan

Bowling Pin Fire transcribes the arc of one man’s life from growing up Chinese in Vancouver, to seeing the world through the lens of fearless, free-spirited youth, to arriving at the initial cautionary glimmerings of midlife. The rituals and rivalries of grade school, the later experiments with everything new, the close-knit dynamics of family and far-flung friends, the happenstances and fidelities of love, the elation and hangover of travel to unexpected quadrants of the globe all prompt the quality of reflection necessary to the leading of a truly examined, contemporary life.

Little Sister’s Book and Art Emporium
1238 Davie Street, Vancouver
tel 604 669 1753

Andy Quan is the author of four books: Calendar Boy (short fiction), Six Positions (erotica), and Slant (poetry), and his new book of poetry, Bowling Pin Fire (Signature Editions). He was also the co-editor of Swallowing Clouds: an Anthology of Chinese-Canadian Poetry. His poetry, short fiction, essays and reviews have appeared in many publications. He lives and works in Sydney, Australia on international AIDS issues.

More information on Andy and his writing can be found at:

NEW: Unity within Diversity - Asian Veterans Speak - May 31 - 4pm

While all soldiers have the common bond of wanting to defend their nation, each individual brings with him the hopes and concerns of his heritage. Our desire is to hear some of the living history as we look to the future.

All are invited to join Veterans of Asian Heritage to find out their experiences.

Questions from young people are especially encouraged both formally at the event and informally and at the reception to follow. Free event

Alice MacKay Room
Vancouver Public Library
350 West Georgia Street, Vancouver

Monday, May 19, 2008

NEW: The 8Th OurTube: Slide Show and Talk Event - May 28 - 8pm

Centre A presents The 8Th OurTube: Slide Show and Talk Event

(the heart that has no love/pain/generosity is not a heart)

Guest artists: Jayce Salloum & Khadim Ali
Navigator: Haema Sivanesan, the director/curator of SAVAC (South Asian Visual Arts Collective), Toronto

Centre A: Vancouver International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
2 West Hastings Street
Free Admission, Everyone welcome

For the 8th edition of Our Tube, we invite you to join us with Jayce Salloum & Khadim Ali

Navigator: Haema Sivanesan, talking about their upcoming project (the heart that has no love/pain/generosity is not a heart); A collaborative project between artists Jayce Salloum and Khadim Ali at Alternator Gallery in Kelowna, British-Columbia, in collaboration with SAVAC. (opening Thursday, June 12th, 2008, Exhibition runs June 9th to July 31st, 2008)

Jayce Salloum, a Vancouver-based artist, collaborates with Khadim Ali, a Hazara-Afghani artist living in Pakistan, on an exhibition of photography, video work and objects made and found during their work in Afghanistan this spring. The project focuses on Afghanistan's Bamiyan valley, where the Taliban destroyed two ancient statues of the Buddha in 2001, as well as geo-political issues related to migration, culture and imperialism.

In undertaking this purveyance of Bamiyan and by extension Afghanistan, the artists examine the ingenuity of survivors and bear witness to the endurance of the Hazara people. Is there scope for stability in Afghanistan? Is there hope for freedom? What is the First World's role and responsibility in the region? In reflecting on these questions, the project addresses political priorities and human values in a globalizing world, providing a unique perspective on the complexities of the post-9/11 landscape.

Jayce Salloum's practise exists between the personal, quotidian, local and the trans-national. He has been working in installation, photography, video, mixed media, text, and performance, since 1978, as well as curating exhibitions, conducting workshops and coordinating cultural projects. He has lectured and published pervasively and has exhibited at the widest range of local and international venues possible, from the smallest unnamed storefronts and community centres in his downtown eastside Vancouver neighbourhood to institutions such as The Museum of Modern Art, Centre Georges Pompidou, National Gallery of Canada, CaixaForum, Kunstlerhaus Bethanien, Bienal De La Havana, Sharjah Biennial, Biennale of Sydney and the Rotterdam International Film Festival.

Khadim Ali is a Hazara artist from Afghanistan living in Pakistan. He was trained in miniature painting at the National College of Art in Lahore and in mural painting and calligraphy at Tehran University. Now based in Pakistan, Ali is an ethnic Hazara whose familial connections are to Bamiyan/Hazarajat, a region occupied from 1998 to 2001 by the Taliban, which massacred thousands of Hazaras throughout Afghanistan. His exhibitions include shows at the Alhamra Art Gallery, Lahore; Chawkandi Art Gallery, Karachi; Hijran Art Gallery, Shiraz, Iran; Asia Pacific Triennial, Brisbane; The Bathhouse Gallery, Tokyo and the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Japan. His work is held in many private and public collections including the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum in Japan, the Queensland Art Gallery in Australia, and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

OurTube will be held at Centre A's lounge space on the last Wednesday night of every month after gallery hours. Each program will be curated by young local and visiting curators and artists, who will also invite the curator for next month so that it continues like a chain event. The guest curator will select series of videos for projection, and initiate the discussion following the screening. Drinks will be served during the screening, so the atmosphere is pretty casual just like at home.

Our Tube is a play on "YouTube". The idea behind the project is not only to broadcast your video, but also to share the experience of watching video with others and talking about it.

For more Information, please contact the gallery:
Tel: 604-683-8326

Makiko Hara, Curator:
Debra Zhou, Public Relations:

Saturday, May 17, 2008

NEW: Shubhendra Rao & Saskia Rao de-Hass - May 22 - 7pm

EAST MARRIES WEST - An intimate fusion of Indian and European musical traditions.

Presented by Caravan World Rhythms Society, City of Richmond, and explorASIAN

Sitarist Shubhendra Rao & Cellist Saskia Rao de-Hass will be giving a demonstration and short lecture at the Richmond Cultural Centre, 7700 Minoru Gate. Free event.

This event is a special preview of their upcoming concert on May 23 (8pm) at the Christ Church Cathedral in Vancouver. Click here for ticket info

Friday, May 16, 2008

NEW: Tom Lee Music Earthquake Benefit Concert - May 17 - 1pm

Earthquake Benefit Concert featuring performances by local Richmond artists

1pm - 4pm Saturday

Tom Lee Music Richmond - 3631 Number 3 Road

100% of all donations will be made to charity to benefit the families affected by the recent earthquake in the Szechwan province of China....

NEW: Roots, Rhymes and Resistance 2008 - May 23 - 6:30pm

Roots, Rhymes and Resistance 2008: Balik sa Komunidad, Balik sa Ugat

RRR will showcase local Filipino youth talent to bring forward the issues affecting Filipino community in Canada and the Philippines. Artists include hip hop acts Toxic Slime and Taong Gago, poet Sol Diana, local dance crews, and an art auction. The show will also feature multi-media presentations and speakers from progressive organizations.

Doors and art auction open at 6:30pm

Sir Charles Tupper Secondary School
419 East 24th Ave., Vancouver

$10 entry; $5 for students and low income youth

For more info please contact UKPC/FCYA at 602-215-1103 or

NEW: New Asia Film Festival - May 23 to 25

Asian Heritage Month Film Festival kicks off in Richmond

2008 New Asia Film Festival to Feature Groundbreaking New Films from Asian Filmmakers

To showcase the rich diversity of Asian-Canadian culture in Richmond, the Richmond Cultural Centre is co-hosting its first ever New Asia Film Festival with the Cinevolution Media Arts Society.

The festival features a total of 25 films that document Asian native/immigrant groups and cultures from China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Canada, Germany and South Africa. The featured films range from documentaries and dramas to short films and animation.

According to Kirsten Schrader, Cultural Programmer at Richmond Cultural Centre, which is affiliated to the Richmond City Hall, Asian Heritage Month held every May across Canada is the best time and perfect opportunity for Richmond in British Columbia to schedule cultural events for the community, and introduce cultures to the new immigrants through cinematic art.

According to Rachel Fan, festival planner and Chair of Cinevolution Media Arts Society, Richmond's Asian immigrant population has undergone a noticeable change in recent years, with new immigrants making up nearly 60% of the residents, and with a diversity of immigrant groups from many different countries spread throughout the city. In addition, Richmond has embarked on ambitious developments in public and private projects, including the Canada Line, infrastructure improvements, brand-new business districts and high-rise residential towers, which are rapidly transforming the face of the city. "The festival highlights cultural perspectives in the process of urban development. Incorporating local and overseas points of view and styles, our feature films freely address many issues involved in urban transformation and development," says Fan.

This year's festival is based on two themes. The first is "Focus on Chinese Language Documentaries", featuring documentaries by Chinese filmmakers from China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and overseas. Secondly, the "Salute to Asian Canadian Filmmakers" covers independent film works from Asian Canadian filmmakers from China, India, Japan and the Philippines. According to Ying Wang, Artistic Director of Cinevolution Media Arts
Society, this year's offerings present Asian cultural experiences from different perspectives. The documentaries and independent films, represented by the diversified Asian diaspora around the globe, provide their viewers with a glimpse of the present and the past of the Asian world.

"Focus on Chinese Language Documentaries" addresses current issues faced by ethnic Chinese societies. The 13 films selected include Umbrella, which received considerable international attention at the Venice and San Francisco Film Festivals, as well as at France's Cinema du Reel, and Please Vote for Me, (one of 15 films on Oscar's documentary shortlist]. Also being screened are How Deep is the Ocean and How High is the Mountain from Taiwan, official selections at several international film festivals, All's Right with the World from Hong Kong, official selection
at the Hong Kong film festival, and Life Among the People of Choni, a documentary from Tibet.

The "Salute to Asian Canadian Filmmakers" explores Canadian immigrant history with nine works, including Partition, which involves questions regarding Indo-Canadian identity, and Strangers Re-Unite, about Filipina workers. Two films, Sleeping Tigers and Shepherds Pie and Sushi, explore Japanese immigrant history and identity, and a new experimental film Shattered, which brings together two historic perspectives of the riots happening in Vancouver history. We are also honoured to be able to present two award winning animated shorts from a Japanese-Canadian filmmaker: What are you anyways? and Yellow Sticky Notes.

The sponsors also plan to assemble a distinguished group of overseas filmmakers this year, including Umbrella and Way of Fortune and Card Boom Mainland Chinese producer Jiang Xianbin, Taiwanese female documentary director Tseng Wen-Chen, whose works Homework and After Championship are being screened at the festival, and Tibetan director and scholar Yongdrol K Tsongkha. In addition, local directors have been
scheduled to participate discuss films with audiences after screenings.

In addition, the 2008 New Asia Film Festival is featuring an "Audience Choice Award" contest, where audience members can vote for their favourite film onsite after each screening. The organizer will announce the winning film before the conclusion of the festival at 8pm on May 25, and the winning film will be shown once more at the final screening.

For the updated information about the film festival, please visit our website at or call 604-247-8300

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

NEW: Burnaby Asian Musical Heritage Night - May 27 - 7:30pm

Burnaby Asian Musical Heritage Night featuring
Golden Pearl Ensemble & Traditional Vietnam Music with The Khac Chi Ensemble

Golden Pearl Ensemble:
Xu Qian (Erhu) Zhimin Yu (Ruan) Guilian Liu (Pipa)

The Khac Chi Ensemble
The traditional Vietnam Music showcasing rare and unique musical instruments from the mountain peoples of Vietnam, interspersed with the haunting melodies of Dan Bau…
There are few talents in the world such as those found in the Khac Chi Ensemble. Their concert performances are a rare insight into the wealth and sophistication of Vietnamese culture.

Venue: King's Best Western Inn, 5411 Kingsway, Burnaby BC

$25 advance (by email or phone below)
$30 at the door

Tel: 778 858 8201 or 778 686 7210

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

"Tailor Made: Chinatown's Last Tailors" wins the prestigious Golden Reel Award for Best Short Film

Realize Entertainment is thrilled to announce that their documentary "Tailor Made: Chinatown's Last Tailors" has won the prestigious Golden Reel Award for Best Short Film at the 2008 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival. The award, presented during the Festival's Closing Night program in Los Angeles' Little Tokyo, is presented to artists whose work exemplifies artistic excellence and the potential for future creative activity.

Directed by Calgary director Leonard Lee and Vancouver filmmaker Marsha Newbery, "Tailor Made" follows 80-something brothers Bill & Jack Wong for one year as they face the reality that they're getting too old to run the little tailor shop their father opened in 1913…and letting go isn't easy. With tailoring being a dying trade, finding someone to take over the family business has proved impossible, but Bill refuses to give up. From taking on a fashion journalist as an apprentice, to selling the shop to a young hot-shot corporate tailor, Bill becomes especially determined and pulls out all the stops.

"Tailor Made: Chinatown's Last Tailors" was commissioned for the CBC Newsworld strand, The Lens, and premiered to a sold out audience at the 2007 Whistler Film Festival. It is also screening as a part of CBC Vancouver's celebration of Asian Heritage Month on May 24th. Please visit for details and to book a seat. Screenings are also being held by the Vancouver Parks board all through May, please visit for details.

TAILOR MADE will be re-telecast on The Lens on Tuesday July 15th at 7pmPT (10pm ET), 10pm PT (1am ET) and 1am PT (4am ET) – Newsworld, Channel 26.

TAILOR MADE is presented by Realize Entertainment and produced in association with CBC Newsworld. TAILOR MADE was produced in association with Knowledge Network, and with the participation of The Canadian Television Fund: License Fee Program and Equity Investment Program, The Rogers Documentary Fund, Canadian Film & Television Tax Credit, British Columbia Film Incentive and developed with the participation of CBC British Columbia, Telefilm, and British Columbia Film.

NEW: Tracing the Lines - May 28 to 31

A Symposium on contemporary poetics and cultural politics in honour of Roy Miki

Following Roy Miki’s exemplary work as a socially engaged poet, editor, activist, critical theorist, and teacher, the symposium will address the challenges of linking intellectual and political work while imagining spaces of freedom and production.

Beginning with a reading by Roy Miki on Wednesday evening, the event will consist of three evening events (May 28, 29, and 31st) and two days of creative/critical panels and presentations addressing the reach of Miki’s work and its literary and social contexts. Topics include contemporary poetics; politics of the imagination; the role of the public intellectual; asiancy; editorial activism; and the history, politics and art of redress. To facilitate ongoing discussions and debate, there will be no concurrent sessions.

Participants include over forty Canadian and international scholars and writers.

Fully Employed---------------------------- $35.00
Under Employed & Students-------$20.00
or pay what you can

• Pre-registration would be appreciated to help with planning.
• To pre-register, send an email with your name and address to (pay when you arrive)
• Or send a check or money order to:
Asian Canadian Studies Society
342-East 5th Ave, Vancouver V5T 4H6


Sunday, May 11, 2008

NEW: SUN DO Taoist Yoga Classes

Sun Do is an ancient Taoist practice based primarily on breathing techniques performed with special postures to stimulate healthy functioning of the internal organs that leads to increase vitality, peace of mind, and expanded awareness.

Location: Yoga on 7th, 156 East 7th Avenue (enter from lane)
Time: Fridays 7pm to 9pm | Sundays 7:45am to 9:45am

Come to an introduction with drop in classes - $10

Saturday, May 10, 2008

NEW: Studio One Book Club: Padma Viswanathan - May 17 & 24

Saturday, May 17 & 24, 2008 | 8:00 - 9:00 a.m.

North by Northwest
CBC Radio One 690 AM

Listen to the CBC Radio Studio One Book Club to hear this year's New Face of Fiction, Padma Viswanathan and her riveting debut novel The Toss of a Lemon. Hosted by Sheryl MacKay and special guest co-host Jen Sookfong Lee (last year's New Face of Fiction).

Part one will be broadcast on CBC Radio's North by Northwest (690 on the AM dial in Vancouver) Saturday May 17 between 8:00 and 9:00 a.m.

Part two will be broadcast on Saturday May 24, same place, same time.

Tune in to win a copy too! Visit CBC Studio One Book Club for more information.


Saturday May 10, 2008 | 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. to May 16

Dr. Sun-Yat Sen Classical Chinese Garden
578 Carrall Street, Vancouver - in Chinatown

The Dr. Sun-Yat Sen Classical Chinese Garden will kick off its 2008 Penjing Festival on Saturday May 10. The festival will run everyday from May 9 to 16.

Come out and see the Penjing (translates from Chinese as "tray scenery"). Penjing is the ancient Chinese art of growing trees and plants, kept small by skilled pruning and formed to create an aesthetic shape and the complex illusion of age. Penjing is very similar to and is the precursor of bonsai. Various Penjing, new and old, at the festival will move you with their beauty. Also on display will be examples of Rock Penjing.

NEW: I am the Canadian Delegate - May 19 - 7:15pm

I am the Canadian Delegate
Duration: 48:00 – Director - Wesley Lowe
Canada 2007. Director: Wesley Lowe.

Pacific Cinémathèque
1131 Howe Street, Vancouver

Wesley Lowe’s inspiring documentary tells the story of B.C.’s Douglas Jung (1924-2002), a World War II veteran who was Canada’s first Chinese Canadian Member of Parliament. Jung’s story embodies the struggles (and victories) of many early Chinese Canadians. Born and raised in Victoria at a time when ethnic Chinese were denied the rights of full citizenship, Jung nonetheless volunteered to fight for his country. The wartime service of Jung and others like him saw Chinese Canadians finally gain equal rights, including the vote, in 1947, opening the door for Jung’s groundbreaking political career. 48 mins.

For more information, visit:

Friday, May 9, 2008

NEW: Exhibition "ACROSS" - May 5 to 25

In celebration of Asian Heritage Month, Dundarave Print Workshop hosts an exhibition of etchings and monotypes by Taiga Chiba, Tomoyo Ihaya, Eunjin Kim and Janice Wong. Titled, "Across", the work in the exhibition explores individual expressions on the nature of Asian cultural perspectives.

Reception Sunday May 11 - 4pm to 7pm

Dundarave Print Workshop Gallery
1640 Johnston Street on Granville Island

Thursday, May 8, 2008

NEW: CBC Film Screenings for Asian Heritage Month

Friday, May 23, 2008 | 6:00 - 10:00 p.m.

SFU Harbour Centre
515 West Hastings St., Vancouver

Significant stories on the history of Asian Canadian communities in Canada.
Film screenings will include panel talks and special guests.

Continuous Journey
(Ali Kazimi, 2004)

Shadow of Gold Mountain
(Karen Cho, 2004)

Seating will be extremely limited, so please RSVP early to North American Association of Asian Professionals (NAAAP) Vancouver.

In partnership with NAAAP Vancouver | DOXA Documentary Film Festival | SFU Canadianized Asian Club | Chinese Canadian Historical Society of BC

With thanks to the National Film Board.

Continuous Journey is a complex tale of hope, despair, treachery and tragedy. It is a revealing Canadian story with global ramifications set in a time when the British Empire seemed omnipresent and its subjects were restless and seeking self-determination.

In 1914, Gurdit Singh, a Sikh entrepreneur based in Singapore, chartered a Japanese ship, the Komagata Maru, to carry Indian immigrants to Canada. On May 23, 1914, the ship arrived in Vancouver Harbour with 376 passengers aboard: 340 Sikhs; 24 Muslims and 12 Hindus. Many of the men on-board were veterans of the British Indian Army and believed that it was their right as British subjects to settle anywhere in the Empire they had fought to defend and expand. They were wrong...

Continuous Journey is an inquiry into the largely ignored history of Canada's exclusion of the South Asians by a little known immigration policy called the Continuous Journey Regulation of 1908. Unlike the Chinese and the Japanese, people from British India were excluded by a regulation that appeared fair, but in reality, was an effective way of keeping people from India out of Canada until 1948. As a direct result, only a half-mile from Canadian shores, the Komagata Maru was surrounded by immigration boats and the passengers were held in communicado virtual prisoners on the ship. Thus began a dramatic stand-off which would escalate over the course of two months, becoming one of the most infamous incidents in Canadian history.

In the Shadow of Gold Mountain - Karen Cho, a fifth-generation Canadian of mixed heritage, discovered that half her family wasn't welcome in the country they called home. While Canada encouraged and rewarded immigration from Europe, it imposed laws that singled out the Chinese as unwanted and unwelcome.

Cho's film, In the Shadow of Gold Mountain, takes her from Montreal to Vancouver to uncover stories from the last living survivors of the Chinese Head Tax and Exclusion Act. This dark chapter in our history, from 1885 until 1947, plunged the Chinese community in Canada into decades of debt and family separation.

At the centre of the film are personal accounts of extraordinary Chinese Canadians who survived an era that threatened to eradicate their entire community. Through a rich melding of history, poetry and raw emotion, this documentary sheds light on an era that shaped the identity of generations and with deeply moving testimonials, it reveals the profound ways this history still casts its shadow.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

NEW: BCGEU Celebrates Asian Heritage Month - May 8

ASIAN HERITAGE MONTH - Potluck Dinner & Movie Night!

Asian Canadian Labour Alliance
Thursday, May 8, 5:30pm
BCGEU Lower Mainland Auditorium

Join other Asian Canadian union members at a meeting of the Asian Canadian Labour Alliance, before the film viewing. The Asian Canadian Labour Alliance provides a forum for Asian Canadian union members to connect, encourages the increased participation of Asian Canadian union members in the labour movement, and works to strengthen the relationship between labour and our Asian Canadian communities.

Share ideas and your favourite potluck dish at this meeting. Please RSVP to Laura Gibbons at 604-291-9611 or by May 6.

Thursday, May 8, 7-8:30pm
BCGEU Lower Mainland Auditorium
4925 Canada Way, Burnaby
(1/2 block west of Norland, enter off Iris Crescent)

In celebration of Asian Heritage Month, the BCGEU Equity + Human Rights Committee is pleased to invite you to a night of film. Light refreshments provided.

"Between: Living in the Hyphen"
A film by Anne Marie Nakagawa that looks at seven different multi-racial Canadians including award-winning poet Fred Wah, and gives voice to their "hybridized" experiences. The film challenges our assumptions about the "one ethnicity + hyphen + Canadian."

More information on the Asian Canadian Labour Alliance can be found at:

Monday, May 5, 2008

NEW: City of Richmond Celebrates Asian Heritage Month

Richmond residents can celebrate our multicultural community this May by taking part in Asian Heritage Month activities.

In Richmond and across the country, the Government of Canada has designated the month of May as Asian Heritage Month. Together the City and community groups will celebrate Pan-Asian arts and culture and explore Asian heritage and traditions.

Asian Elements of Britannia- Guided Walk
May 10 1:00-2:30pm
Britannia Heritage Shipyards
Learn the stories behind the Murakami House and Boatworks, Richmond Boatworks, Chinese Bunkhouse, and the Japanese Duplex buildings at Britannia Shipyard National Historic Site. Parents must accompany children.
All Ages Free (must be booked in advance)
For more information, call 604-718-8050

Hong Wo Store Exhibition
May to June
This Steveston store served the community of cannery workers and fishermen for 60 years. Hong Wo, “Living in Harmony” store, was established in 1904 by Tung Ling Lam.
Richmond Museum
7700 Minoru Gate
All Ages

Kala Utsav - Indian Arts Benefit For Global Relief
May 10 7:00-9:30pm
Richmond Cultural Centre 7700 Minoru Gate
All Ages $18 Adults, $12 Seniors and Students, Children under five- free
Proceeds go to the Canadian Red Cross

Musicians Master Class
May 22 7:00pm
Meet master musicians sitar player Shubhendra Rao and Cellist Saskia Rao de Hass, two of the foremost Classical Indian instrumentalists working today. Come and meet them and learn more about their craft. A rare opportunity to learn directly from two world class musicians.
Richmond Cultural Centre 7700 Minoru Gate
All Ages Free

"The Good Asian Drivers Tour"
Melissa Li is a singer-songwriter who has been performing for over 8 years. She and her tour partner, nationally recognized transgendered slam poet Kit Yan, are going on a cross-country road tour this spring and summer. The tour strives to inspire youth and provoke dialogue on gay rights, transgendered issues, feminism, and the marginalization of minorities. Presented by explorASIAN.
May 3 8:00-10:00pm
Richmond Cultural Centre 7700 Minoru Gate
Free admission - Limited seating
For more information, call 604-247-4391

Richmond Library Services Asian Heritage Months Events:

The Doctor who was Followed by Ghosts (1 hour)
May 1 7:00pm
This lively presentation and slide show about Dr. Li Qunying recounts the political, economic and cultural turmoil that existed in 20th century China. Presented by Louis Han. In English only. Registration required. (Max 35)
Brighouse Meeting Room

Introduction to Asian Culture (2 hours)
May 4 3:00pm
In partnership with The Royal Thai Consulate. These presentations aim to enhance people's understanding of the different Asian cultures. Sessions provided in English only. Registration required. (Max 60)
Brighouse Program Room

In addition, the following sessions are offered in partnership with the Richmond Multicultural Concerns Society.

May 2 7:00 pm Introduction to Korean Culture-
May 22 6:30 pm Introduction to Filipino Culture
May 27 7:00 pm Introduction to Indian Culture
Brighouse Program Room
For more information on any service offered by Richmond Library Services please call 604-231-6413.

Richmond Art Gallery Asian Heritage Months Events
Richmond Art Gallery 7700 Minoru Gate
RAG hours: M-F 10am-6pm, Sa-Su 10:00am-5:00pm
For more information, call 604-247-8300

Art Gallery Exhibition Tours in Mandarin
Apr 26-Apr 27 10:30am to 4:30pm
In co-operation with Doors Open
16+yrs Free

“Donated Organ” Amy Chang
Apr 26 – Jun 1
Considers global citizenship and the value of human life. Chang’s ceramic works directly evoke the international organ market. The gangs or groupings of individual pieces are at once attractive and repulsive, playful and unsettling.
16+ yrs Free

“Water, Rice and Bowl” Tomoyo Ihaya
Apr 26 – Jun 1 2008
Ihaya’s mixed media installation presents an assemblage of drawings, stuffed paper figures and found objects developed through the artist’s travels to India and Mexico and her immersion in those cultures.
16+ yrs Free

Richmond Art Gallery Family Sunday
Apr 27 and May 25 1:00-4:00pm
Family Sunday is a free drop in art program for parents and children on the 4th Sunday of the month
Richmond Art Gallery 7700 Minoru Gate
All Ages Free thanks to the RBC Foundation.

For more information about Asian Heritage Month in Richmond, please contact 604-276-4391 or download the Richmond Asian Heritage Month schedule at

NEW: Solo Works of Shyh-Charng Lo - May 9 to June 27

OPENING: Friday, May 9, 2008, 3-6pm, Shyh-Charng Lo in Attendance

Art Beatus is delighted to present the emotive and moving landscape works of Vancouver-based artist, Shyh-Charng Lo. “Solo Works of Shyh-Charng Lo” starts May 9, 2008 and runs through to June 27, 2008. Coinciding with the annual festivities of Asian Heritage Month in May, the artist’s recent oil on canvas paintings of Vancouver’s ocean, mountain and sky will be featured with hopes to inspire feelings of renewal and the freshness of the Spring season. A reception to celebrate the opening of the exhibition will be held on Friday, May 9, 2008 from 3pm to 6pm. The public is encouraged to attend, not only to view the works but to meet the artist who will be present at the opening.

When looking at Shyh’s paintings, one is often presented a glimpse of the various angles and changing seasons through the artist’s window – the lush landscape which surrounds his home on the Westside of Vancouver is routinely the subject matter for his paintings. Lo’s works which are slightly abstracted versions of the landscape around him, are based on the feeling and essence of his surroundings, not the actual objects. His paintings are commonly referred to as tranquil, bringing peace and quietude to the viewer. This seems somehow reflective of the artist who frequently conveys his ongoing communicative relationship with nature. His constant awareness of the natural beauty around him is his inspiration and motivates him to express his connection with this particular beauty onto the canvas.

“A monologue becomes a dialogue with nature, not only helping me to express something deep at the bottom of my heart, but also opening a gate for my inner feelings to be comforted. My landscape painting has been simplified to basic forms and shapes for compositional and structural purposes and meditates on my relationship with my surroundings, articulating a perspective of inner peace, serenity and sometimes solitude”.

Shyh was born in 1945 in Nagano, Japan and moved a year later to Hsin-chu, Taiwan with his parents. While he showed artistic talent at a young age, he was never formally educated in art. When he was accepted into the National Taiwan University (the highest-ranked educational institution at the time), he chose the field of archaeology and anthropology. No art programs existed during this period of time at the institution and it was as close as he could come to studying art. After receiving his Bachelor’s Degree in 1970, he moved to Vancouver for graduate studies at the University of British Columbia. Upon receiving his Master’s, he traveled to Toronto to pursue museum training which eventually led to a position with the Royal Ontario Museum.

Throughout his studies and years of employment, Shyh continued to paint in his own time. His love of art grew stronger over the years and after a decade of working at the Royal Ontario Museum, he made the very daring decision to leave his job and dedicate all his time to painting. In 1989, he and his family moved back to Vancouver where they settled into their home in the Point Grey area. Shyh-Charng Lo has since established himself as a very respectable artist and the varying changes in scenery outside his windows continue to be a never-ending source of inspiration. Mr. Lo has had numerous exhibitions and his work can be found in the international collections of assorted institutions and private art collectors.

Art Beatus, with a location in Vancouver, Canada and two locations in Hong Kong, showcases international art with a focus on contemporary Chinese art.

Art Beatus (Vancouver) is located in the Nelson Square Office Tower at 108 – 808 Nelson Street.

For more information, please contact Tamla Mah or Akemi Kojihata by email to or by telephone at 604.688.2633

Friday, May 2, 2008


Pick up this week's copy of the GEORGIA STRAIGHT and read about some of the artists who are being featured at explorASIAN 2008 along with commentaries about the Asian Canadian experience.


NEW: CBC's Asian Heritage Month website

Radio One - 690 AM
Radio 2 - 105.7 FM
CBC News: Vancouver Saturday and Sunday

May is Asian Heritage Month. This month, CBC brings you special programming and events that acknowledge and celebrate the rich history of Asian Canadians, their contributions to this country and their stories which have become a strong and consistent part of Canada's social fabric.

Check out our highlights for this week below. You can also visit CBC's Asian Heritage Month website 24/7 at

May 5
CBC News: Vancouver Saturday
At 10:30 pm (after Hockey Night in Canada)

Tune into CBC News: Vancouver Saturday with host Rosa Marchitelli and watch CBC's special segment on what Asian Heritage Month is all about, and why it matters.

May 6
CBC News: Vancouver Sunday
at 11:00 pm

Join Rosa Marchitelli for another special segment for Asian Heritage Month. This segment profiles young musicians and poets with a "loud and proud" message for "gay'sian" youth struggling with their identity amid cultural pressures.

Tuesdays and Thursdays in May
To celebrate Asian Heritage Month, CBC Radio One's On the Coast is launching a new series with celebrated chef, author, and Vancouver tour guide Stephen Wong called Slice of the City. Stephen will take listeners to his favourite places to eat, shop and explore Asian culture in Metro Vancouver. This week Stephen will reveal where to get a truly delicious traditional cup of Chinese tea and where to find collectible tin wind-up toys. Check out Slice of the City on On the Coast, Tuesdays and Thursdays at 4:45 pm. On the Coast can be found on CBC Radio One 690 AM

Friday, May 9th
Tune into The Early Edition at 8:15 am for Margaret Gallagher's Weekend Wrap to find out about special events to mark Asian Heritage Month this weekend.
The Early Edition is on CBC Radio One 690 AM

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Thursday, May 1, 2008

NEW: Introduction to Asian Culture - May 2 / 4 / 22 / 27

May 4 / 3pm - 5pm
In partnership with The Royal Thai Consulate. These presentations aim to enhance people's understanding of the different Asian cultures. Sessions provided in English only. Registration required. (Max 60)

Brighouse Program Room
Richmond Cultural Centre 7700 Minoru Gate

In addition, the following sessions are offered in partnership with the Richmond Multicultural Concerns Society. Brighouse Program Room

May 2 7:00 pm Introduction to Korean Culture
May 22 6:30 pm Introduction to Filipino Culture
May 27 7:00 pm Introduction to Indian Culture

For more information on any service offered by Richmond Library Services please call 604-231-6413.

For more information about Asian Heritage Month events in Richmond, please contact 604-276-4391 or visit the City website at