Vancouver International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art



Centre A is pleased to present its 3rd biennial
Cultural (Ex)Changes in Asian Diasporas
What is the situation of contemporary art in Asian diasporas?
Curated by Alice Ming Wai Jim
in consultation with the community
special thanks to Sook C. Kong, Roy Miki and Ashok Mathur
Opening reception: Thursday, June 3, 6pm, Centre A
Symposium: Friday and Saturday, June 4 – 5,
Emily Carr Institute Art + Design + Media
Lecture Theatre, Room 328
1399 Johnston Street, Granville Island, Vancouver
Sponsors: Anndraya T. Luui, Patron Vancouver Foundation Canada Council for the Arts Long March Foundation, Emily Carr Institute Art + Design + Media
Registration: Registration is FREE but seating is limited.Reserve a place by telephone: 604 683 8326 or email: [email protected]
Please include your name, address and email
Special offer to Centre A members:
Become a Member of Centre A for $20 and receive
Full symposium abstracts and contacts for delegates
Copies of Centre A catalogues
A voting membership in the organization
Exhibition: Judy Cheung, Toronto
Ramona Ramlochand, Montreal
Henry Tsang, Vancouver
Performance: Peggy and Karen Ngan, Vancouver


MUTATIONS<>CONNECTIONS: Cultural (Ex)Changes in Asian Diasporas considers the question: What is the situation of contemporary art in Asian diasporic communities?

The exhibition and dissemination of work by Asian artists, both local and from elsewhere, in countries including Canada, US, UK, Australia, and Singapore, are deeply implicated in continually changing discourses of cultural politics and globalization. Over the last two decades, changing conditions of international contemporary art exhibition practices, local community networks, and opportunities to travel have reconfigured the ways in which Asian art is shown both locally and on the international stage. Consequently, questions of territorial representation, cultural exchanges and institutionalization are now central to how contemporary Asian art is being presented and received in different diasporic communities around the world.

The MUTATIONS<>CONNECTIONS symposium seeks to address these questions. It brings together artists, critical theorists, cultural organizers, curators, educators and public art galleries from across Canada, Sydney, Singapore, Manchester, UK, New York and San Francisco, among other places, who work closely in connection with Asian diasporas in these cities to discern the ongoing cultural mutations in these regions and discuss new approaches and critical frameworks to exhibiting and disseminating the work of Asian artists in these respective local communities.

Underlying questions to be examined revolve around how connections are negotiated given the accelerated mutations of social structures, conditions and relationships. How are, for example, relationships between recent immigrant groups and third- or fourth- generation Asian Canadian, Asian American, Asian Australian communities formed, sustained and at times conflictual? How is the current transnational mobility of ideas, artists of Asian descent and their works reflected in shifting notions of identity, artistic interventions, exhibition practices and dissemination of research? In what ways do aesthetic innovations and cultural differences persist and are even generated by new economic and cultural influences? Does encompassment necessarily curtail artistic practice, agency, social activism?

An in-depth awareness and understanding of how these mutations and connections are currently being manifested and negotiated is essential to the symposium organizers, the Vancouver International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, which is located a city that has the highest concentration of Asian diasporic communities in North America and Europe. Centre A looks forward to informing its own development with issues raised in the symposium, as well as fostering connections with and between the local community and other organizations dealing with similar conditions.

The symposium is held in conjunction with an exhibition on the same theme by three Canadian artists at Centre A.

MUTATIONS<>CONNECTIONS is curated by Alice Ming Wai Jim, in consultation with an advisory committee of local members of the arts and culture community. Special thanks to Sook C. Kong, Roy Miki and Ashok Mathur.

Centre A gratefully acknowledges the generous support of its patrons, sponsors, members, advisory committee, volunteers, private foundations and government funding agencies, including the Canada Council for the Arts, the British Columbia Arts Council, and the City of Vancouver Office of Cultural Affairs.