The Worlds of Bernice Bing illuminates the life and times of Bernice Bing - artist, Chinese American, lesbian, and activist. The powerful story of a woman who used color, paintbrush, and canvas to speak from her heart, this film promises to energize and inspire viewers with the resilience of a unique American icon.
Bing came of age during a time when 'lesbian' was a bad word, racism was rampant, and women were expected to be housewives. As a young artist, she won a scholarship to attend the California College of Arts & Crafts (now California College of the Arts), where she was a student of Richard Diebenkorn. After earning her BFA there (1959) and her MFA at San Francisco Art Institute (1961), she emerged at the forefront of the avant garde and thrived in the heart of the North Beach bar scene, her large circle of friends including Joan Brown and Jay DeFeo. In addition to producing her own masterful compositions, Bing affected changes in the San Francisco art world and community arts organizations that continue to be vital today.
Directed by Madeleine Lim and presented by Asian American Women Artist's Association (AAWAA) along with Bing scholar Jennifer Banta Yoshida, this film finally gives Bernice Bing the attention she so well deserves.
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UNDERCURRENTS & THE QUEST FOR SPACE EXHIBITION BY APICC & AAWAA @ SOMARTS, MAY 2–25 2013
underCurrents & the Quest for Space is a multidisciplinary arts exhibition and discussion investigating the space occupied by Asian America, socially, artistically and physically. Asian American artists exhibit work that detonates a discourse on the under-discussed issues impacting Asian Americans, interrogates the myth of “model minority,” and acknowledges the multiple ways contemporary Asian American communities address and subvert stereotypes, discrimination and invisibility. This multi-media, multi-disciplinary arts exhibition aims to identify and contemplate the political implications of what lies below the surface, while exploring possibilities to move beyond, reinventing history and artistically predicting an unrestrained future.
Asian American Women Artists Association (AAWAA) is a nonprofit arts organization dedicated to ensuring the visibility and documentation of Asian American women in the arts. Through exhibitions, publications, and educational programs, we offer thought-provoking perspectives that challenge societal assumptions and promote dialogue. aawaa.net
Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center (APICC) supports and produces multi-disciplinary art reflective of the unique experiences of Asian Pacific Islanders living in the United States. underCurrents is featured as part of Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center’s (APICC) 16th Annual United States of Asian America Festival at SOMArts Cultural Center. apiculturalcenter.org
SOMArts is to promote and nurture art on the community level, and to foster an appreciation of and respect for all cultures. Founded in 1979, SOMArts embraces the entire spectrum of arts practice and cultural identity, and it is beloved in San Francisco as a truly multicultural, community-built space where cutting-edge events and counterculture commingle with traditional art forms. somarts.org
Image, Video, and Article curtesy to AAWAA, APICC, SOMArts, Mido Lee Productions, http://www.facebook.com/MidoLeeProductions
Music by Distimia (España)
Bory Thach was born in Khao I Dang, a refugee camp on the Thai and Cambodian border. He is an Iraq War veteran and graduate M.F.A. student at California State University San Bernardino. He enjoys writing fiction and poetry. He currently lives in San Bernardino, CA.
In response to Cynthia Tom’s “Human Trafficking, a Cultural Tradition” and “Pillows”
Without names or birthrights, they are nothing
But deserters, cast out like untouchables
Aboard a sinking trade ship. Human slaves
Rise up in mutiny to their captors, royal monarchs
Who watch only for changes in the night sky, a
Kind of meteor garden that maps out distant
The tattered emblems of skull and cross bones
Flap against tropical winds until bodies are torn
Apart by hurricanes. Painted black flags, sails, and
Masts tied together by spars and hemp threads, are
Made by these people captured along the coasts. Only
The jungle weeps for them. Their homelands and languages
They become like wandering spirits, drawn to
Floating lanterns that lie just beyond misty fog,
Clouding their mystic journey. Darker than an ox’s eye,
The sky turns into gray ash, while the dead stares back
At them from haunted lighthouses, holy shrines at sea.
A tower shining bright like the rumbling pulse
Of a sowing needle.