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Working Conditions

  • Asian Arts Initiative 1219 Vine Street Philadelphia, PA, 19107 United States (map)
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Working Conditions Opening Reception
Featuring: cinematic savage | CYJO | Rebecca Goldschmidt | Shizu Homma | Cynthia X. Hua | Sarah Khan | Tiffany Lin | Lewanda Lim | Lisa Pradhan | Shellie Zhang
First Friday, September 7, 6 – 8 p.m.

Exhibition runs September 4 – December 15, 2018


Asian American lives are shaped by the concept of labor, whether working in factories overseas, as caretakers in the United States, or performing the emotional labor of smiling every time someone asks “Where are you from?”. The artists in Working Conditions utilize a variety of strategies—performance, video, painting, installation, sculpture, and mixed media—to illuminate the ways in which labor operates on a global and a personal level.



The opening reception will feature:

Performance by Rebecca Maria Goldschmidt

In the Filipino kitchen, vinegar is an omnipresent ingredient, but beyond its culinary value, it also serves as a medicinal and spiritual tool that has been essential to our survival. Nabanglo a lamisaan is an interactive installation inviting audiences to experience sukang ilocos, a sugarcane vinegar, and recall their own memories of bitterness, perseverance, and labor, as they learn about key historical events.



Performance by Shizu Homma

Reflecting on her personal labor history, Shizu Homma will perform traditional Japanese embroidery at the opening reception and additional performances during gallery hours and have finished needlework to frame. Visitors are invited to ask her about work she has done—illegal, legal, voluntary, coerced, paid, and unpaid. Homma’s performance will continue during gallery hours from September 10 – September 21.



Related Events:

Beyond Appropriation: Economic Exploitation and Erasure – First Friday, October 5, 7 p.m.
3:25pm performance by Gu Wei – First Friday, December 7, 7 p.m.
The Living Deal: API Poets on Loss, Labor, and Love – First Friday, November 2, 7 p.m.