Seattle Asian Art Museum hosts a free two-day community celebration “Off the Walls” on Sept. 15 & 16 in which local artists have been invited to create installations to fill the space before renovation and expansion. There will be performances and talks as well. This event is already at limited capacity but there will be limited tickets at the door. Sept. 15 from 7 – 10pm will be a program entitled “Remembering and Creating Art & Dance of India” with a lecture by Nalini Balbir on Jain manuscript sculpture in 15th century North India and Ayla Joncheere will talk about and perform a demonstration of Rajasthani Kalbeliya dance. The evening closes with Bijli, an electric Indian fusion band. Sat. Sept. 16 is “Community Day” from 10am – 2pm with live art installations by Benji Anderson & Priscilla Umemoto, Romson Regarde Bustillo, Louis Chinn & MISS TANGO, Kalina Ching, Minh Nguyen, Chris Shaw, Kenji Stoll, Tasveer and Junko Yamamoto. You can create art with Wyly Astley, Janet Fagan and Mylen Huggins. Performances by CHIKIRI’s School of Taiko, Mak Fai King Fu Club Lion Dance Team and Massive Monkeys Studio: The Beacon. Snacks available from food trucks. Sat., Sept. 16 from 8 – 11pm there will be music, dancing and artmaking. This event is 18+ with a cash bar. First come, first served.1400 E. Prospect St.
“Gimme Shelter” is the theme for Columbia City Gallery’s 12th annual juried exhibit this year. This show speaks to the many types of dislocation happening in society today both locally and internationally. Issues of homelessness, gentrification and refugee dislocation are addressed. Also on view is a group show of Columbia City Gallery artists. Through Sept. 24, 2017. “Dukkha and Liberation – Art of India and Southeast Asia” is a group show in the Guest Gallery co-curated by Kamla Kakaria and Romson Regarde Bustillo. Reception on Sat., Sept. 30 from 5 – 7pm. On view from Sept. 27 – Nov. 12. 4864 Rainier Ave. S. Hours are Wed. – Sun. from 11am – 7pm. 206-760-9843.
Now on view through Oct. 11 is “(Non) Traditional Tattooist”, a show of tattoo designs on archival paper created by photographer, painter and artist Eva Yuewang. Form/Space Atelier at 98 Clay St. in Seattle. 206-349-2509 or go to formspaceatelier.com.
The City of Seattle Office of Arts & Culture present two timely new group shows culled from the collection of the city of Seattle on the top floor of King St. Station downtown. “Borderlands” in the work of nine installations tackles the theme of nationalism and whether it creates a sense of belonging or alienation? “And She Persisted: Voices of Women Artists” shows the work of women artists who continue to refine and interpret traditions from their homelands of origin while at the same time putting their art in service of action. Includes the work of Carina del Rosario, Anida Yoeu Ali, Satpreet Kahlon and many others. On view through Oct. 29. Fridays from 11am – 2pm. Saturdays from noon – 6pm. Sundays from 11am – 2pm. First Thursdays on Sept. 7 and Oct. 5 from 5 – 8pm. 303 South Jackson St. on the top floor downtown across from Chinatown/ID link rail/bus tunnel. Go to http://www.seattle.gov/arts/borderlands for details.
With the title “POWER”, this year’s Seattle Design Festival kicks off with a Block Party in Occidental Park in Pioneer Square on Sept. 9 & 10 from 10am – 6pm. It features touchable, interactive art installations by artists and designers for you to explore. There will be 80+ events and installations in dozens of venues across the greater Seattle area all month. Closing party takes place Sept. 22 from 8 – 11pm at Karass Creative at 201 1st Ave. #210. For full details, go to designinpublic.org.
Z. Wei continues his journey along the highways and byways of Washington state with a new series of paintings of landscapes in oil on canvas entitled “Vistas” Sept. 7 – Oct. 1, 2017. Some of the work will be exhibited in 2018 at the Booth Museum in Cartersville, Georgia. The artist will be at the gallery on Thurs., Sept. 7 from 6 – 8pm. Patricia Rovzar Gallery at 1111 1st Ave. in Seattle. 206-223-0273 or go to www.rovzargallery.com.
Bainbridge Arts & Crafts presents a group show of ceramic artists entitled “A Place at the Table”. Complete place settings in porcelain, ceramic, and other mediums. Work by Nana Kuo and Reid Ozaki are included. On view now through Oct. 1, 2017. 151 Winslow Way E. 206-842-3132 or go to www.bacart.org.
Tara Tamaribuchi’s installation work is popping up all over. “Craft Abstracts” at Thomas East Storefront is just one of eight new installations by artists in the South Lake Union area as part of its acclaimed “Storefronts” program. The theme of the current exhibition is “Honoring Life and Humanity in the Urban Wilderness”. Presented by Shunpike whose “Storefronts” program activates neighborhoods and streets by matching artists with vacant retail space. 206-905-1026×103 or go to www.storefrontseattle.com. Tamaribuchi’s newest installation piece entitled “Camouflage Net Project” is on view through Dec. 31, 2017 as part of the Seattle Center Sculpture Walk. The piece, a canopy of camouflage netting made with kimono fabric, tents the underside of a glass-covered walkway just south of the Pacific Northwest Ballet. It is the artist’s response to the 75th anniversary of Executive Order 9066, which incarcerated her family and community in prison camps throughout WWII. The piece was inspired by Nisei (second generation Japanese Americans) who made tens of thousands of camouflage nets for the US Army at Santa Anita Assembly Center, and Manzanar and Gila River internment camps. The artist’s intention was to connect her handiwork to that of her incarcerated community, while using traditional kimono fabric to send pride of heritage back in time to them. As camouflage protects people and objects and blends them into their surroundings, this work represents a discrimination filter for today, through which we see the true nature of people as interconnected with each other and the world. Part of the Seattle Center Sculpture Walk as presented by the City of Seattle Office of Arts and Culture and Seattle Center. For more information, go to taratamaribuchi.com.
It’s a match made in culinary/art heaven. Artist/photographer/writer Dean Wong often hangs out at Tai Tung Restaurant in the CID. Now the restaurant has returned the favor with an ongoing presentation of his iconic photographs entitled “Made In Chinatown USA.” Sit at the counter deep into your chow mein and looks at images of the neighborhood on the wall. 655 South King St. Ongoing.
At the Asian Pacific Cultural Center Gallery in Tacoma, local artist Steve Hu shows his watercolors. Through October, 2017. 4851 South Tacoma Way. 253-383-3900. To learn more about the artist, go to www.artworkstevehu.com.
Davidson Galleries presents in September a show by Mio Asahi. Asahi’s etchings/aquatints show a fantasy world of women warriors quelling dragons and dancing with aquatic creatures. Opening on First Thursday on Sept. 7 from 6 – 8pm. On view through Sept. 30, 2017. Showing in Oct. will be work by Kikyz and Tomiyui Sakuta. 313 Occidental Ave. S. Open Tues. – Sun. from 10am – 5:30pm. 206-624-7684 or go to www.davidsongalleries.com.
“Searching for Home” is a site-specific installation by Humaira Abid featuring personal narratives, stories and portraits of refugees in the Northwest woven into socio-cultural themes of immigration, women and families. It is her first solo exhibition in the U.S. In her work, she tackles issues of culture, gender and relationships both in her Pakistani homeland and her adopted U.S. home. Sept. 22, 2017 – March 25, 2018. Bellevue Arts Museum. 510 Bellevue Way N.E. Closed Mon. & Tues. Wed. – Sun. 11am – 5pm. Free Frist Fridays from 11am – 8pm. 425-519-0770.
On view Nov. 11 – Dec. 23 will be work by Wong Ping, an animated film artist from Hong Kong. His work has been exhibited internationally in Manchester, Hong Kong, Istanbul, Berlin and Paris. He received Perspective’s “40 Under 40” Award. Interstitial art space is at 6007 – 12th Ave. S. on the 3rd floor. Open Saturdays from 12 – 7pm. Go to interstitialtheatre.com for details.
KOBO at Higo at 604 South Jackson features many small arts & crafts/textile shows and activities inspired by Asia or work by Asian American artists. 206-381-3000 or firstname.lastname@example.org. There is another branch of KOBO on Capitol Hill at 814 E. Roy St. 206-726-0704.
“Past/Present” is a group show of regional artists “grappling with the continuation of one’s cultural heritage in today’s globalized post-modern society.” Oct. 5 – Nov. 25, 2017.Closed Mondays. Artxchange Gallery at 512 First Ave. S. in Pioneer Square. 206-839-0377 or email@example.com.
Japanese Swiss painter/sculptor/photographer Leiko Ikemura makes her U.S. debut at James Harris Gallery Sept. 7 – Oct. 14. She left Japan in her 20’s to study in Spain and moved to Switzerland in 1979. She currently lives in Germany. Her work depicts an obscure female subject placed in a mystical landscape. She uses her work to address questions of gender, war and religion. 604 – 2nd Ave. 206-903-6220 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
New and recent shows /activities at the Wing include the following – “Come Out and Play: Adventures in the Neighborhood” is a new show that remains on view through Jan. 7, 2018. This KidPLACE exhibit uncovers the many ways you can play right in our neighborhood. “Teardrops that Wound: The Absurdity of War” is a group show that looks at how art can deflate war’s destructive weight by exposing its absurdity. Contemporary Asian Pacific American artists pull back the curtain and invite visitors to examine war from another angle. Curated by SuJ’n Chon. “Year of Remembrance: Glimpses of a Forever Foreigner” with poems by Lawrence Matsuda and art by Roger Shimomura is a small but potently meaningful show now extended until April 23, 2018 . “We Are the Ocean: An Indigenous Response to Climate Change” explores how indigenous communities are responding to the ways climate change is affecting waters and lives. Through Nov. 12, 2017. “Do You Know Bruce?” is a major new show on the personal, intimate story of martial arts artist and film star Bruce Lee and the significance of Seattle in his life. The Wing is the only museum in the world, outside of Hong Kong, to present an exhibition about Bruce Lee’s life. The Lee family has plans to eventually open a permanent museum on Bruce Lee’s life and legacy in the Chinatown-ID neighborhood. A new installment of the Bruce Lee exhibit entitled “Day in the Life of Bruce Lee: So You Know Bruce? opened on Sat., Oct. 1, 2016. The new installment explores what it took to become “Bruce Lee”. It delves into his daily work habits, routines and strategies to his written & visual art, reading, and personal time spent with family and friends. Toddler Story Time set for Thursdays at 11am always has events centered around a kid’s book and an art activity afterwards. On Thurs., Sept. 14 there will be an event entitled “Your Story, Our Story” with Dori Cahn at 6pm. Help gather stories related to Seattle’s Immigration and Naturalization Serivice (INS) Building. Come share your story as an immigrant or refugee as we build a digital storytelling exhibt in partnership with the Tenement Museum in New York’s Lower East Side through “Your Story, Our Story.” There will be equipment to digitally capture materials for the exhibit so bring your photos, documents and/or objects that help share your story. This event includes a light dinner. On Sat., Sept. 23 from 2 – 4pm there will be a free presentation with Japanese American former internees as they reflect on their experience and how it relates to the Muslim American experience. Done in conjunction with the “Year of Remembrance: Glimpses of a Forever Foreigner” exhibit. A new addition to The Wing’s daily Historic Hotel Tour is “APT 507” which is the story of Au Shee, one Chinese immigrant woman who helped build Seattle’s Chinatown. Her living room is interactive with objects meant to be felt, opened and experienced. Starting in 2017, The Wing offers a “Grilled Things And Chicken Wings Tour” (grilled, deep fried and everything in-between) – Sept. 8 & 15 from 4:30pm – 7pm. Book your tours at winglinke.org/tours. Members get a 15% discount. More activities for teens include these – “Second Life” explores sustainability through art by working with trash and making treasured art pieces. For ages 10 – 14. “Finding Voices: Art Portfolios and More” is for teens ages 15 – 19. Learn how to create and polish up your art portfolios. The Museum is located at 719 South King St. (206) 623-5124 or visit www.wingluke.org. Closed Mondays. Tuesday – Sunday from 10am – 5pm. First Thursday of each month is free from 10am – 8pm. Third Saturday of each month is free from 10am – 8pm.
On view through Oct. 22, 2017 is “Common Pleasures: Art of Urban Life in Edo Japan.” This show highlights works from this period that celebrate the common people and their joys. Pure Amusements: Chinese Scholar Culture and Emulators” presents Chinese works ranging from prints to sculpture and furnishings to ceramics drawn from SAM’s collection that explore the life of leisure. This exhibit is ongoing. Related events for the Yayoi Kusama show include the following – “Drop-in Studio: Infinite Reflections” is a series featuring demonstrations by local artists who will explore themes and ideas found in “Infinity Mirrors” and how it connects to their own work and processes. A great opportunity for visitors to have a hands-on art making experience. These workshops take place every Sunday through Sept. 20 from 11am – 2pm. On Sept. 10, Regina Schilling is the artist. Opening Nov. 4 and remaining on view through July 15, 2018 is “Beauties and Talents: Art of Women in Japan” which features “women’s self-fashioning” including literature-inspired paintings, prints, kimono and lacquerware. Seattle Art Museum is at 1300 First Ave. downtown. 206-654-3100.
“Detritus” is the title of a show of trippy, nature-inspired sketches and installations with live plants by Markel Uriu at Method Gallery through Sept. 20. The artist describes the work as “concepts in Buddhism and Wabi Sabi of impermanence, decay, and a resulting wealth of growth.” 106 Third Ave. S. 206-713-7819. Open Fri./Sat. Go to methodgallery.com for details.
At SOIL from Oct. 5 – 28, 2017 is a group show entitled “What We Treasure: Stories of Yesler Terrace” curated by Rachel Brumer. It is a community-driven artistic exploration of the historic public housing unit, Yesler Terrace. Includes work by Devonn Midori Hale, D.K. Pan and many others. 112 Third Ave. S. 206-264-8061 or go to soilart.org.
Tacoma-based artist Fumiko Kimura has a show of new work entitled “One.Dot.Sumi” that investigates how science and art meet at the molecular level in the way sumi ink changes when it hits the surface of the washi paper. Includes 16 new experiments demonstrating this process. Sharing the show will be work by Clarissa Sligh in a show entitled “Am I Safe?”.On view through Sept. 23. At the Kittredge Gallery on the campus of the University of Puget Sound. Clarissa Sligh gives a talk about her work on Wed., Sept, 6 at 6:30pm. Fumkio Kimura will give a talk on Wed., Sept. 13 from 5 – 6pm. 1500 N. Warner St. in Tacoma. Regular hours are M – F from 10am – 5pm and Saturdays from noon – 5pm. 253-879-3100 or go to pugetsound.edu/kittredge.
Local installation artist Satpreet Kahlon has been selected to exhibit as part of the 2017-2018 Gallery4Culture Season. From Nov. 2 – Dec. 7, 2017, she will show a series of labor-intensive sculptures and video installations the rise in demand for “handmade” objects and how the term actively erases the labor, oppression, and high societal cost of importing mass-produced goods made by brown hands in developing nations. Deadline for the next round of selections for shows at 4Culture is Mon., Jan. 8, 2018.
“Mikawa” is a sound and sculpture installation by Garrett Fisher and Tori Ellison inspired by the Japanese epic “Tales of Ise” where a poet meditates over his lost love. On view Sept. 29 – Dec. 8, 2017. Opening reception on Sept. 29 at 7pm. There will be an artist talk on Fri., Oct. 13 at 7pm. Choreographer Christy Fisher will perform a dance inspired by the installation at all events. Jack Straw Foundation at 4261 Roosevelt Way NE. E mail email@example.com
Seattle Asian Art Museum in Volunteer Park is now closed for what is projected to be a renovation and extension that will take several years.
Bainbridge Island Museum of Art has a group show entitled “Women in Photography” on view through Oct. 1, 2017. Includes the work of Seattle photographer Megumi Arai & others. 550 Winslow Way E. 206-451-4013 or go to biartmuseum.org. Free admission. Open daily from 10am – 6pm.
The imaginative, powerful work of installation/performance artist Anida Yoeu Ali is on view at Feast Arts Center in Tacoma during the month of October. Open Sat. from 12 – 4pm and Sun. from 9am – 1pm or by appointment. They also have various arts activities and classes all week long. 1402 South 11th St. Go to feastarts.com for details.
“Witness to Wartime: The Painted Diaries of Takuichi Fuji” on view from Sept. 16 – Dec. 31, 2017. This exhibition is based on Northwest art historian Barbara Johns book entitled “The Hope of Another Spring” (UW Press). A discovered illustrated diary that the artist kept on his war-time experienced locked up in Minidoka internment camp form the nucleus of this important exhibit. Johns will give an author talk/book signing on Sat., Sept. 16 at 2pm. For other talks, see “The Written Arts” category. Washington State Historical Society is at 1911 Pacific Ave. in Tacoma. 1-888-238-4373.
“Familiar Faces & New Voices: Surveying Northwest Art” opens May 13, 2017 and stays on view through the summer of 2019. This group show is a chronological walk through of Northwest art history, illustrated with the works of noted artists from each time period as well as lesser-known but just as important figures. Different works will be displayed throughout the run of this show. Includes the work of Patti Warashina, Joseph Park, Alan Lau and many others. “In Search of the Lost History of Chinese Migrants and the Transcontinental Railroads” is the title of a new exhibition by UW Professor and internationally acclaimed artist Zhi Lin who looks at the thousands of Chinese men who came to America to work on the railroads and mine for gold. He travelled extensively to historic sites and painted at these locations to evoke the contributions of Chinese to the history of the American west. This multi-media work on view through Feb. 4, 2018. Writer/Professor Shawn Wong of the UW English department has contributed an essay to the exhibition catalog. Artist Zhi Lin will lead an historic walking tour at an historic Chinese American site on September 21 with the Tacoma Historical Society on this Free Third Thursday event. Other Free Third Thursday events include a Q & A and art-making with Zhi Lin on Nov. 16 and a community panel on immigration and exclusion on Feb. 15, 2018. This show up until Feb. 18, 2018. Tacoma Art Museum at 1701 Pacific Ave. 253-272-4258 or email info@TacomaArtMuseum.org or go to www.TacomaArtMuseum.org.
“Still Working on Garbage Paintings + Learning to Paint and Draw” is the title of Portland artist Robert Dozono’s latest show at Blackfish Gallery. For years, the artist has been transforming trash collected from river fishing trips into subtle large scale images. Bucolic riverscapes from a distance reveal upon closer inspection, individual pieces of discarded consumer waste. In the other series in this show, the artist returns to what first captivated him about painting – “working outdoors, looking at objects in front of me.” These new images come from careful observation of the effects on nature of space, light and time. Through Sept. 29. Hours are Tu. – Sat. from 11am – 5pm. 420 NW 9th Ave. 503-224-2634 or http://www.blackfish.com.
Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center presents “American Obon: Dancing in Joy And Remembrance” on view through Oct. 15, 2017. The Rev. Yoshio Iwanaga introduced this tradition to many Nikkei communities along the West Coast in the 1930s and this multi-media exhibit celebrates his pioneering activities. “Oregon Nikkei: Reflections of an American Community – Japanese American Life in Oregon” is an ongoing exhibit. “Tuna Canyon Detention Station Exhibition” opens Oct. 15, 2017 and remains on view through Jan. 7, 2018. This show tells the story of a little-known temporary detention facility set up during WWII in Southern California to hold enemy aliens considered risks to national security. Over 2000 Japanese, German, Italian and Japanese Peruvians were detained here. It has now been turned into a golf course. 121 NW Second Ave. in Portland. 503-224-1458 or go to www.oregonnikkeir.org.
Portland Japanese Garden collaborates with architect Kengo Kuma on the launch of a major expansion opening April 2, 2017. The Cultural Village expansion provides additional space and will enhance its ability to immerse visitors in traditional Japanese arts and culture. Three new Japanese gardens will be added as part of this. The garden will host major art exhibitions this year with related lectures, demonstrations and activities “Mirrors of the Mind: The Noh Masks of Otsuki Koukun” is a display of hand-carved masks by a master artisan and elegant brocade costumes from the traditional silk looms of Orinasu-kan in Kyoto set for fall. Also in development is the International Institute for Japanese Garden Arts & Culture which will offer classes in traditional garden arts such as tea ceremony and calligraphy. This opens to the public in 2018. For more information, go to japanesegarden.com.
On December 7, 1941 Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, launching America into war. In Canada, this action resulted in the confiscation of nearly 1,200 Japanese-Canadian owned fishing boats by Canadian officials on the British Columbia coast, which were eventually sold off to canneries and other non-Japanese fishermen. The exhibition entitled “The Lost Fleet” looks at the world of Japanese Canadian fishermen in BC and how deep-seated racism played a major part in the seizure, and sale, of Japanese Canadian property and the internment of an entire people. Curator Duncan MacLeod states that “the history of Japanese Canadian fishermen is inextricably linked to the history of Vancouver. The city was a gateway in the Pacific for all immigrants looking to forge a brighter future for themselves.” The exhibition will showcase a series of photographs as well as several models of Japanese Canadian built fishing vessels in its collection, made by model shipbuilder, Doug Allen. These models replicate some of the fishing boats seized during the war that have since been lost to history. On view through March 25, 2018. Vancouver Maritime Museum at 1905 Ogden Avenue in Vanier Park in Vancouver, BC Canada. Open Tues. – Sat. from 10am – 5pm and Sundays from noon – 5pm. Also open late on Thursday nights until 8pm. Go to https://www.vancouvermaritimemuseum.com/exhibit/lost-fleet-exhibition for more details.
The UBC Museum of Anthropology presents the following – On view until Oct. 9, 2017 is “Traces of Words: Art and Calligraphy from Asia”, a survey of writing throughout Asia over a span of different time periods. Curated by Fuyubi Nakamura who describes the show “as the powerful duality that emerges when the written word becomes a medium or canvas.” 6393 NW Marine Dr. in Vancouver BC. 604-822-5087 or moa.ubc.ca.
Vancouver Art Gallery’s new public artwork by Hong Kong artist Tsang Kin-Wah will be shown at two locations through Oct. 15, 2017. These large scale compositions transform English texts to form intricate floral and animal patterns. The words are from discriminatory language that appeared in Vancouver during the 1887 anti-Chinese riots, the mid-1980’s immigration influx from Hong Kong and most recently, the heated exchanges around the foreign buyers and the local housing market. “Onsite/Offsite:Tsang Kin-Wah will be placed in the heart of downtown Vancouver at 1100 W. Georgia St. as well as on the Howe Street façade of the Gallery itself. Nov. 9, 2017 – April 15, 2018 will feature an offsite installation by New Delhi-based artist Asim Waqif which combines architecture with a strong contextual reference to contemporary urban design and the politics of occupying, intervening and using public space. The artist will repurpose debris generated from demolition sites in Vancouver, employing materials from abandoned and derelict buildings to make a new installation. Vancouver Art Gallery is at 750 Hornby St. in Vancouver, BC Canada. 604-662-4719.
“Hastings Park 1942” is the title of an installation in collaboration with performance artist Yoshie Bancroft. It is also the name of the assembly center where over 8,000 Japanese Canadians were incarcerated in East Vancouver before being sent to internment sites in the interior. The exhibit contains a performance piece titled “JAPANESE PROBLEM”. It invites an audience into a stall filled with the uncertainty of their next destination in order that they might get a feeling of what Japanese Canadians went through during the war. On view Sept. 30 – Jan. 13, 2018. Nikkei National Museum. 6688 Southoaks Crescent in Burnaby. 604-777-7000 or go to nikkeiplace.org
Asian Art Museum, San Francisco has the following – “Flower Power” is a group show that uncovers the hidden meanings of flowers in Asian Art until Oct. 2, 2017. Seoul-based Yong-Hae Chang Heavy Industries presents a collaboration between net art pioneer artist Chang and Marc Voge. It is web-based work that exists somewhere between art, literature and cinema. On view through Oct. 1, 2017. “The Sculptural Turn – Japanese Ceramics From The Kempner And Stein Collection” remains on view through Nov. 26, 2017. This group show showcases the work of fourteen Japanese clay artists who studied in universities or came to ceramics after exploring other fields. This show is significant for showing work by artists who did not come from the traditional master/student relationship but also for featuring work by women in a field usually dominated by men. “A Journey Into The Great Unknown” is on view through Oct. 29, 2017 and includes a collaboration between two Pakistani American women. Visual artist Shahzia Sikander works with playwright Ayad Akhtar. Sikander’s etchings compliment Akhtar’s colophons that explore the theme of Mi’raj, the mystical night journey of the Prophet Mohammad. “Philippine Art: Collecting Art, Collecting Memories” is on view through March 11, 2018. Expressive indigenous carving, jewelry, textiles, Christian devotional statues, postwar genre and landscape paintings and contemporary works of this island nation fill this show. On going are two installations. In front of the museum is “Dragon Fortune” by Taiwanese artist Hung Yi which meshes together Taiwanese folk art, Japanese textile design and pop art kids cartoons. In the lobby is “Collected Letters” by Liu Jianhua, a cutting edge installation of porcelain letters and fragments of Chinese characters suspended in mid-air. Opening Nov. 3, 2017 is “Couture Korea – Historical Korean Fashions and its modern Reinterpretations”. It is the first U.S. exhibition to consider Korean fashion as an expression of social and cultural values. Remains on view through Feb. 4, 2018. 200 Larkin St. 415-581-3500.
The De Young Museum in Golden Gate Park has the following – “Beyond the Surface: World-wide Embroidery Traditions” on view through March 25, 2018. “The Maori Portraits: Gottfiried Lindaver’s New Zealand” is on view through April 1, 2018. Thirty-one compelling historic portraits of men and women of esteem and rank at a time of great political, cultural and social change and complex intercultural exchange. 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Dr. 415-750-3600.
The San Jose Museum of Art presents a show entitled “The Propeller Group” set from Oct. 27 – March 25, 2018. This art collective based in Vietnam and L.A. takes on ambitious projects connected to Vietnam’s history and its paradoxical present through all media including film. 101 South Market. 408-271-6840.
“Noguchi’s Playscapes” is an exhibition that gathers his designs for several playgrounds, stand-alone play structures and other works that, while serious in subject, employ playful elements to engage the viewer. Through Nov. 26, 2017. San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) at 151 Third St. Go to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 415-357-4000.
The Berkeley Art Museum has the following – “Buddhist Realms” is a group show with exquisite examples of Tibetan Buddhist paintings and sculpture from the 12th – 19th centuries. Up until Oct. 8, 2017. “Martin Wong : Human Instamatic” opens Sept. 30 and remains on view through Dec. 10, 2017. This retrospective surveys the career of this “urban visionary” artist of the Lower East Side who saw the beauty of graffiti scrawled on crumbling old buildings and the vibrant culture that it spawned. Traces his origins in the Bay Area to New York and back. “Miyoko Ito/MATRIX 267” looks at the work of this Berkeley-born artist who made her name in Chicago and did paintings that explore both exterior and interior landscapes. Sept. 27 – Jan. 28, 2018. “Repentant Monk: Illusion and Disillusion in the Art of Chen Hongshou” is on view from Oct. 25 – Jan. 28, 2018. He was a major force in Chinese art of the late Ming and early Qing. His visually compelling work mirrored the turmoil of his times. 2155 Center St. 510-642-0808 or go to email@example.com.
“Polished to Perfection: Japanese Cloisonne – From the Collection of Donald K. Gerber & Sueann E. Sherry” on view through Feb. 4, 2018. A group show of “Chinese Snuff Bottles from Southern California Collectors” on view through Oct. 1, 2017. “Japanese Painting: A Walk in Nature” through Sept. 10, 2017.“Unexpected Light: Works by Young II Ahn” through Jan. 21, 2018. LACMA or Los Angeles County Museum of Art. 5905 Wilshire Blvd. 323-857-6010.
The Japanese American National Museum has the following shows – “Transpacific Borderlands: The Art of Japanese Diaspora in Lima, Los Angeles, Mexico City and Sao Paulo” is on view from Sept. 17 – Feb. 25, 2018. By looking at the work of Latin American artists the exhibit will show how ethnic communities, racial mixing and the concepts of homeland and cosmopolitanism inform the creativity and aesthetics of hybrid culture. 100 N. Central Ave. in Los Angeles. 213-625-0414 or go to http://www.janm.org.
Denver Art Museum is planning a major exhibition from their collection entitled “Linking Asia: Art, Trade, and Devotion” which will look at cross-regional and cross-cultural influences in Asian art. The works come from over 20 countries and spans 2,000 years. The show opens Dec. 17, 2017 and remains on view through April 1, 2018. 100 W. 14th Ave. Parkway in Denver, CO. Call 720-865-5000 or go to www.denverartmuseum.org.
Yoko Ono installation entitled “Four Works for Washington and the World” on view through Sept. 17, 2017. A new Ai Weiwei project which includes a large-scale lego installation “TRACE” originally commissioned in 2014 for a project on Alcatraz Island includes 176 portraits of individuals the artist considers activists, prisoners of conscience or advocates of free speech and a 700-foot graphic work entitled “The Plain Version of the Animal That Looks Like a Llama But Is Really An Alpaca.” Opens June 28 at the Hirshhorn in Washington DC. Open daily except for Christmas from 10am – 5:30pm. National Mall at the corner of 7th St. SW & Independence Ave. 202-633-1000 or go to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Asia Society Museum in New York presents the following – “Masterpieces from the Asia Society Museum Collection” through July 20, 2018. Opening Sept. 8 and on view through Jan. 21, 2018 is “After Darkness – Southeast Asian Art in The Wake of History.” Includes artists from Indonesia, Myanmar,and Vietnam.“In Focus: An Assembly of Gods” is on view from Sept. 26 – March 25, 2018. 725 Park Ave. New York City, New York. 212-327-9721 or go to www.asiasociety.org for more details.
“Ian Cheng: Emissaries” looks at the complete series of video installations presented sequentially in three parts by this young artist through Sept. 25, 2017. MoMA PS1 on Long Island City, New York. 22-25 Jackson Ave. Hours are Th. – Mon. from noon – 6pm. 718-784-2084 or email@example.com.
In the 16th century, four Japanese boys were sent to the princely and papal courts of Europe. It was the first global age of religion, commerce and politics. Photographer/architect Hisroshi Sugimoto looks at the sites these early Japanese youths saw and captures it in the exhibition entitled “Gates of Paradise.” Shown in two parts. Part 1 opens Oct. 20, 2017 and remains on view through Nov. 17, 2017. Part 2 is on view from Nov. 21, 2017 – Jan. 7, 2018. At The Japan Society. 333 E. 47th St. 212-715-1258 or go to japansociety.org.
The Cleveland Museum of Art has the following – “Chaekgeori: Pleasure of Possessions in Korean Painted Screens” is on view until Nov. 5, 2017. “Beyond Angkor: Cambodian Sculpture from Banteay Chhmar” is a show that references the “second citadel” built by King Jayavaman as a second political and religious center about 70 miles northwest of Ankor. On loan from the National Museum of Cambodia will be a section of the sculpted enclosure wall with a unique low relief carving of the Bodhissattva of compassion. On view Oct. 14 – Jan. 7, 2018. The Yayoi Kusama “Infinity Mirrors” show continues its tour with a stop here July 7, 2018 – Sept. 30, 2018. 11150 East Blvd. 216-421-7350.
Williams College art instructor Barbara Takenaga is known for her radiating dot-pattern paintings which are part of the American abstract tradition. The college gives her a retrospective culled from the last two decades. Oct. 5, 2017 – Jan. 28, 2018. Museum of Art, Williamstown in Massachusetts.
Museum of Fine Arts Boston has the following – “Takashi Murakami: Lineage of Eccentrics – A collection with Nobuo Tsuji and MFA, Boston” is on view from Oct. 18 – April 1, 2018. The popular Japanese artist Murakami whose work is influenced by popular culture and manga also has roots in Japanese eccentric traditional art. Noted Japanese art historian Nobuo Tsuji looks at examples in the MFA collection of Japanese art for some examples of traditional art that inspired some of Murakami’s present work. “Black And White – Japanese Modern Art” is a show centered around a large scale calligraphy piece by Inoue Yuichi. This exhibition showcases a selection of avant-garde works in the monochrome aesthetic. On view Sept. 30, 2017 – June 3, 2018. 9300 Avenue of the Arts. 465 Huntington Ave. Go to mfa.org or call 617-267-9300.
“Good Fences Make Good Neighbors” is the title of Chinese artist Ai Wei Wei’s latest project which will build over 100 fences around New York City. Inspired by the international migration crisis and political turmoil facing the US government’s policy on immigration. Commissioned by the Public Art Fund.
“Self-Interned, 1942” tells the story of American artist Isamu Noguchi who voluntarily went to Poston War Relocation Center where Japanese Americans were interned during WW II with the idea to improve conditions with art and design. He made small pieces of driftwood sculpture. His efforts came to naught and he petitioned to be released. His time spent here however may have proven to be a catalyst for future work. On view through January 7, 2018. Noguchi Museum in New York. 718-204-7088 or go to nogiuchi.org for details.
“The World Is Sound” is an intriguing exhibit curated by Risha Lee to absorb art not only with the eyes but the ears. Music washes over the viewer on the staircase up to the sixth floor. Contemporary audio and visual installations also add to fill up the sound next to objects from the Tibetan collection. Through January 8, 2018. Rubin Museum of Art in New York. 150 West 17th St. 212-620-5000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago presents the first full-length career retrospective of Japanese pop culture artist Takashi Murakami entitled “The Octopus Eats Its Own Leg.” On view through Sept. 24, 2017. 220 E. Chicago Ave. 312-280-2660 or email email@example.com.
To celebrate the 10th anniversary of The Benjamin Franklin Parkway, the city of Philadelphia plans a year long series of public art installation as activities. The celebration will include an outdoor installation by artist Cai Guo-Qiang Sept. 14 – Oct. 8. The artist plans to light up the Parkway with “Fireflies” which will consist of twenty-seven luminous kinetic sculptures in the form of free pedicabs that will move through the area. Participants can experience the Parkway by riding inside the sculptures as passengers. Qiang has previously done work in the city back in December of 2009 with his “Fallen Blossoms” explosion project at the Philadelphia Museum of Art and Fabric Workshop.
The Art Institute of Chicago presents the following. “Batik Textiles of Java” explores the richly patterned wax-resist textiles known as batiks, their flourishing in the Indonesian island of Java, and their inspirations and functions. On view through Sept. 17, 2017. “India Modern: The Paintings of M. F. Hussain” shows eight large triptychs from the “Indian Civilization” series which celebrates India’s rich and diverse culture. Hussain was one of India’s first modern artists. Up through March 4, 2018. “City and Country: Views of Urban and Rural Japan” opens Oct. 14 and remains on view through Dec. 2017. A selection of 20thcentury prints juxtaposes two sides of modern Japan reflecting the lure of the city and the nostalgia for the country that it induced. 111 South Michigan Ave. 312-443-3600.
The Dallas Museum of Art has the following – “The Keir Collection of Islamic Art Gallery is on view through April 26, 2020. “Waxed: Batik From Java” on view from Sept. 25 – Dec. 3, 2017. “Yayoi Kusama: All the Eternal Love I have for the Pumpkins” installation is on view from Oct. 1, 2017 – Feb. 25, 2018. “Asian Textiles: Art And Trade Along the Silk Road” opens Dec. 16 and stays on view until Dec. 9, 2018. 1717 N Harwood in Dallas, TX. 214-992-1200.
The Denver Art Museum has “GANESHA-The Playful Protector” on view Oct. 1, 2017 – Oct. 28, 2018. On loan from the National Museum of Cambodia is a statue of Ganesha as a centerpiece. Augmented by sculptures, paintings and textiles from the museum collection. 100 W. 14th Ave. Parkway.720-865-5000 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Los Angeles County Art Museum presents “Atmosphere in Japanese Painting” which shows a series of techniques that the Japanese painter both yesterday and today, could use to evoke to atmosphere of weather and the changing seasons. Work by Ikeaki Yoshio, Yamamoto Kakurei, Senju Hiroshi and Miya Ando. 5905 Wilshire Blvd. 323-857-6010.
Yayoi Kusama’s “Infinity Mirrors” tour hits the Broad in Los Angeles Oct. 21 – Jan. 1, 2018. The museum also has one of her “Infinity Rooms” in their permanent collection. 221 South Grand Ave. Email email@example.com.
At UCLA’s Hammer Museum is the show “Hammer Projects: Tabaimo”. For the lobby wall, Japanese installation/video artist Tabaimo in her L.A. premiere creates a new installation that incorporates large-scale drawings and a video. She probes the surface giving surreal life to banal occurrences incorporating Japanese art traditions like woodcuts into her active imagination. On view now until Dec. 3, 2017. 10899 Wilshire Blvd. 310-443-7000.
The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) has a new feature called “Send Me” which allows anyone to text a request to see something from their vast collection at any time. Give a topic and text 572-51 and you will receive a picture of art in return. Try ‘Send Me SFMOMA.” When you text the # with the words “send me” followed by a key word, a color or even an emoji, you’ll receive a related artwork/image and caption via text message. Go to sfmoma.org for details.
The oil paintings of Kumagai Morikazu (1880 – 1977) are universally loved in Japan. The paintings have a flatness and animal subject matter that many ascribe to the Japanese woodcut tradition but his thick oil paint texture and muted tones have a Nihon-ga feel that touch the hearts of people with their gentle charm. Coinciding with the fortieth anniversary of his death, this retrospective covers his entire career with some two hundred works. Dec. 1, 2017 – March 21, 2018. National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo.
Art Basel Hong Kong takes place March 29 – 31, 2018 at Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre. It maintains a fifty-fifty balance between Asian and Western galleries. They always have a section dedicated to the Asia Pacific region.
The Yayoi Kusama craze seems insatiable. To that end, the artist herself has had a museum dedicated to her work that will open in October of this year in the Shinjuku section of Tokyo. It is a five-story white, large-windowed, curved structure designed by Kume Sekkei. The second and third floors will show her paintings, sculptures and other works. The fourth floor will be dominated by her Infinity Rooms and other installations. The top floor will have a reading room and archival material. Timed tickets are now on sale. Excerpted from Art World.
When playwright Laureen Yee’s father, a driving force in the Yee Family Association goes missing, she must plunge down the rabbit hole of San Francisco’s Chinatown to find him. “King of the Yees” is an epic joyride across cultural, national and familial borders to discover what it truly means to be a Yee. Directed by Desdemona Chiang. On stage Sept. 8 – Oct. 1, 2017. ACT Theatre. 700 Union St. 206-292-7676 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Although Town Hall is closed right now for renovation, they continue to produce and presents events all over town at various venues. Celebrate the anniversary of jazz titan John Coltrane’s birthday with “Brooklyn Raga Massive – John Coltrane Birthday Tribute” presented by Town Hall and Earshot Jazz. Coltrane was always searching and listening with an avid interest in world cultures and music. Along with his wife, Alice Coltrane – he was particularly interested in Indian music. As a member of Brooklyn Raga Massive states, “There is something magical happening right now. There is a new generation of musicians who are disciples of some of the greatest living Indian Classical musicians, but who also speak the languages of jazz, funk, reggae – not as outsiders, but as insiders of both traditions.” This concert should mine many traditions enriching us all. With Jay Gandhi, Pawan Benjamin, Trina Basu, Marc Cary, Brandee Younger, Neel Murgai, Sarneer Gepta, Rashaan Carter, Michael Gam and Arun Ramamurthy. Sat., Sept. 23, 2017 at 7:30pm. Plymouth Church Seattle at 1217 – 6th Ave. For tickets & information, visit townhallseattle.org. For details about Brookly Raga Massive, go to brooklyrgamassive.org.
Sketchfest Seattle and the Comedy Film Challenge come to Seattle. It kicks off Sept. 10 with a series of local showcases. The main shows bring some of the biggest acts in sketch comedy to Seattle Sept. 22-23. The Comedy Film Challenge takes place on Sept. 16 at 7pm at Central Cinema. The audience can vote for the audience choice award. Comedy Film Challenge submissions are open to amyone and comes with a cash prize. Founded in 1999, Sketchfest Seattle is the world’s first sketch comedy festival. Tickets can be found at sketchfest.org.
Degenerate Art Ensemble premiere a new performance piece as a duo along with Mizu Desierto from Portland on Sept. 23 & 24 at The Grocery. For tickets and information, go to https://www.eventbrite.com/e/degenerate-art-ensemble-and-mizu-desierto-at:the-grocery-tickets-37014916612.
Seattle Opera brings a return appearance of “An American Dream” to Washington Hall September 7 – 17 at Washington Hall. This community-based chamber opera played to sold-out audiences in 2015. It is inspired by true stories from our region’s history and set during WW II, this opera explores the lives of two Puget Sound women: a Japanese American forced to leave her home and a German Jewish immigrant preoccupied by those who left behind. There will be a video to view presented by DENSHO and a post-show Q&A presented by the Seattle JACL after each performance. Thursdays and Fridays at 8pm and Sundays at 2pm. If you use the promo code DREAMPRESALE and get your tickets early, you may be eligible for a community discount. Go to seattleopera.org/americandream or call 206-389-7676. Washington Hall is located at 153 – 14th Ave. There will be several post-show discussion panels after some performances. More information is available at seattleopera.org/americandream.
For a few years now, actress/playwright/performance artist Sara Porkalob has been cracking people up with her piece based on her eccentric family with a myriad of characters in “Dragon Lady.” Now she presents her most comprehensive version ever in an Intiman Theatre production directed by Andrew Russell. This version is a musical with a live band. In it, Porkalob portrays multiple family members from three generations in a plot that includes gangsters, murders and hilarity. Set to be on stage at the Jones Playhouse at the University of Washington from Sept. 5 – Oct. 1, 2017. Go to http://www.intiman.org/dragon-lady/ or email email@example.com for details.
Arts West in co-production with Pratidhwani present the play “The Who & The What” by Pakistani American Pulitzer-Prize-winning playwright Ayad Akhtar. All hell breaks loose when the conservative father and sister of a young Pakistani woman writer actually read the novel she is working on about women and Islam. Stars Monika Jolly who originated the role in 2014 at the La Jolla Playhouse. Also includes Abhijeet Rane, Haley Alaji and Andre Nelson. Directed by Samip Raval who has starred in several productios of the playwright’s previous play, “Disgraced”. Sept. 7 – Oct. 1. Following that, local actress/director will Sara Porkalob will direct Jiehae Park’s play entitled “Peerless” which is an irreverent re-imagining of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. The plot revolves around two Asian American high school students who are twin sisters both vying an affirmative action spot at a college only to be thwarted by a white male colleague who is 1/16th Native American. 4711 California Ave. “Peerless” opens Jan. 18, 2018 and closes Feb. 11. The season ends with Branden Jacobs-Jenkins “An Octoroon” directed by Brandon J. Simmon which is a genre-defying play on the performance of race. April 19 – May 12, 2018. 2018.S.W. in West Seattle. 206-938-0339 or go to artswest.org.
The Steve Griggs Ensemble have the following performances. Sept. 16 “Sound in Stone” featuring poetry by sculptor James Washington as sung by Bernie Jacobs. Sept. 23 is “Panama Hotel Jazz” about Japanese American internment during WWII. Go to http://www.stevegriggsmusic.com for details. 2100 S. Jackson St.
The Anindo Chatterjee Institute of Tabla along with Dhrupad Music Institute of America and Acess to Ustads Project present a concert entitled “Wind Whisperers of India” on Sat., Sept. 16 & 17 at 6pm in the UW Music Building’s Brechemin Auditorium. The concert unites bansuri flautist Ronu Majumdar from North India with sarawati veena virtuoso Rajhesh Vaidhya from South India. They will be accompanied by percussionists of North (tabla) and South India (mridangam). Kids & teens under 18 free. UW students with ID free. A second concert sponsored by Access To Ustads Project along with art Works and the NEA will present Rajasopalan Ensemble with violin Maestro Ganesh Rajadopalan,Srivani Jade, Ravi Albright and others. Sat., Oct. 14 at 7pm. Eastside Bahai Center in Bellevue,WA. 16007 N.E. 8th St. Seniors with advance ID $14 and general admission at $20. Go to acitseattle.org for details.
Mabuhay Majesty is a new full-length play by local playwright Robert Francis Flor. It will be staged at the Rainier Arts Center on Fri., Sept. 29 & Sat., Sept. 30 at 7pm. The play is set in the early 1960’s Seattle when two Filipino American teenagers are encouraged by their parents to participate in the Seattle Filipino Community Queen Contest, a tradition the girls reject as old fashioned and humiliating. The play explores the conflict traditional societies face when they transition into modern society and examines the adaptation of immigrants to life in America. Directed by Eloisa Cardona with a cast that includes Manny Golez, Linda Rigor, Laurie Rocello Torres, Roxie Torres, Ezra Sarmiento and Matt Dela Cruz. Sponsored by the City of Seattle Office of Arts and Culture. 3515 South Alaska St. For details email firstname.lastname@example.org.
eSeTeatro with ACTLab present “The Construction Zone”, readings of four new plays by contemporary Latino and Latin American authors. Each of these four plays have been selected from the body of work of leading contemporary Latino and Latin American playwrights that have been produced nationally and internationally. Performed and directed by local professional artists, each reading will be followed by a post-show discussion. One of these plays will get a full production in the 2018 season. September 8 is “Hushabye by Tanya Saracho as directed by Valerie Curtis-Newton. September 15 is “Modern Slave” by Elaine Romero as directed by Kathy Hsieh. September 22 is “The Journey of the Saint (El Viaje De La Santa)” by Cesar de Maria as directed and translated by Rose Cano. September 29 is “Querencia (an imagined autobiography of forbidden fruits) by Benjamin Benne as directed by Pilar O’Connell. Of particular interest to Examiner readers is “Modern Slave” by Elaine Romero. A woman finds a hand-scrawled note from a Chinese sweatshop worker in the lining of her designer coat. She sets off on a passionate journey to free him. This quest takes her down a rabbit hole of globalization and into the complicated world of modern slavery hidden in plain sight. Kathy Hsieh, actress and co-founder of SIS Productions directs. Tickets start at $10. 700 Union St. 206-292-7676 or go to www.acttheatre.org for details.
Japan Week at Bellevue College takes place Oct. 2 – 7. On Sat., it will culminate in a all-day festival (Matsuri). During the school week there will be cultural and educational workshops and demonstrations. On Saturday’s MATSURI, there will be activites, Japanese food, music and performances. There will also be movies, exhibitions and workshops for all ages to enjoy. Free and open to the public. Free parking and free wi-fi.
Bellevue World Taiko Festival presents their annual benefit concert “Sounds of Taiko” on Oct. 6 at 6:30pm and Oct. 7 at 3:30pm. Special guest this year is Kenny Endo, the first foreigner who earned a masters license in classical drumming. Besides performing his own compositions, Endo will play with CHIKIRI and Cascades Taiko Drummers. Seattle percussionist Ian Dobson will also perform with the taiko groups. In addition, long time taiko advocate and taiko drummer/instructor Stan Shikuma will talk about the history of taiko in the U.S. Mariko Okayama of Kimono Art will talk about the history of the kimono. At Bellevue College’s Carlson Theatre. For tickets go to worldtaikofestival.brownpapertickets.com. For more information go to www.worldtaikofestival.org.
ARC Dance under the direction of Artistic Director Marie Chong present their “Autumn 47” mixed rep program set for October. The ballet company will pay tribute to the late dancer/choreographer Kabby Mitchell III by performing a piece he wrote for the company. The piece “Something Fun” by Marie Chong will be performed. Completing the program will be World Premiere pieces by David Fernandiz and Alex Ketley and two re-imagined works by local choreographers Gerard Theoret and Wade Madsen. Oct. 12 – 15. ARC Dance Company’s intimate performance space located at 9250 – 14th Ave. N. W. in Seattle. Tickets go on sale Oct. 1 at www.arcdance.org.
Seattle Young Philharmonic Orchestra Music Director Kit Chen coordinates a concert entitled “Moon Festival Melody: Cello Exploration”. In celebration of the Chinese Moon Festival, the program includes music of diverse cello styles and combinations of cello with Chinese instruments. A full orchestra will explore ancient Chinese music side by side with Western classical compositions. Oct. 15 at 3:30pm. Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue.
Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig’s play entitled “The World of Extreme Happiness” centers around a Chinese girl caught between the poor countryside and the smog-filled factory cities of opportunity in a modern China. Deals with issues of money, exploitation and decisions on how far individuals must go to succeed and at what costs? Directed by Desdemona Chiang. A co-production between Seattle Public Theater and SIS Productions. Oct. 13 – Nov. 5, 2017. Running Dec. 1 – 24 is “The Flight Before Xmas” by Maggie Lee. When you are heading home for the holidays, the last thing you want to do is get stranded at an airport with a bunch of strangers. But everything has a silver lining in this holiday production. It is a world premiere for Lee, who has had hit plays with Porkfilled Players including “Tumbleweed Zephyr” and “The Clockwork Professor”. Directed by Amy Poisson. 7312 W. Greenlake Dr. N. 206-524-1300 or go to email@example.com.
Brooklyn-based percussionist/composer Andy Akiho is part of the Emerald City Music “Artist Spotlight” series. He plays a selection of his own compositions as well as works of other composers that inspire him. Oct. 27 at 8pm. 415 Westlake. #10 – $45.
“At First Light: Chinese Music in the Year of the Rooster” is the 33nd Annual Concert in the “East Meets West” series. This evening presents acoustic selections with orchestrations from China performing beloved Western classics on both traditional Chinese instruments and Western instruments as well. Oct. 28 at Benaroya Hall in downtown Seattle at 7:30pm.
The Byrd Ensemble perform a program entitled “Ritual: Music From Sacred Tradition” pulling tunes from both Western and Eastern Christian traditions. Oct. 28 at 8pm at St. James Cathedral. $20 – $30.
Seattle Symphony and Conductor Ludovic Morlot have issued the schedule for their 2017-2018 season. Some highlights include the following – “Celebrate Asia” this time around is conducted by DaYe Lin with sitar player Nishat Khan and Seattle erhu virtuoso Warren Chang. Kazuki Yamada will make a Seattle debut as guest conductor. A two-concert festival of Prokofiev features rising star pianists Nathan Lee, Charlie Albright and Conrad Tao with violinists Sophie Lee & William Hagen. Subscription packages available now and single tickets on sale August 5, 2017. Go to www.seattlesymphony.org for details.
The 2017 Earshot Jazz Festival brings dozens of international, national and local jazz musicians to Seattle performing in various venues all over the Puget Sound from October 8 – November 12, 2017. A few events out of many that may be of interest to our readers include the following – Indian sitar virtuoso Pandit Debi Parasad Chatterjee comes to Seattle to perform with local saxophonist/composer Neil Welch on Sat., Oct. 21 at Chapel Performance Space at 8pm. Local composer/percussionist Paul Kikuchi’s latest projects have involved investigation of the Japanese American part of his heritage. His latest project entitled “9066” named after President Roosevelt’s executive order that put all people of Japanese heritage into internment camps during WWII takes a musical journey into that experience. Kikuchi performs “9066” on Friday, Nov. 3 at Japanese Cultural & Community Center of Washington (time tba) using archival film, a 78 rpm musical soundtrack and the movement of choreographer/dancer Crow Nishimura. Satoko Fujii is a marvelous pianist and composer who has pushed the envelope in improvised music with jazz orchestras on both sides of the Pacific. She appears on Nov. 8 at 7:30pm with Gato Libre at the Chapel Performance Space at 7:30pm. In this group she plays accordion. Ivan Artega’s CMD (computers, music, dance) with Seattle drummer/composer Chris Icasiano as the anchor perform in a mixed genre event. Tickets on sale and more information at earshot.org.
The Meany Center For The Performing Arts has released their 2017/2018 schedule. Some of the many highlights include the following – The popular return of the Cloud Gate Dance Theatre Of Taiwan led by founder Lin Hwai Min with a new work entitled “Formosa – (beautiful island)” which uses gesture, script, song and other elements from the landscape and history of his native Taiwan. Thurs. – Sat. on March 22 – 24, 2018 at 8pm. The Juilliard String Quartet with Joseph Lin in the lead violin chair performs on Thurs., Nov. 9 2017 at 7:30pm. Calidore String Quartet with David Finckel and Wu Han perform on Tues., April 24 , 2018 at 7:30pm. “Feathers Of Fire – A Persian Epic” updates the classic shadow play traditions of Asia & the Near East with cinematic “live animation” shadow-casting actors and puppets along with projected imagery in the magical tale of star-crossed lovers from the 10th century Persian epic “Shahnameh (The Book of Kings)” set for Wed., March 14, 2018 at 8pm. With an original score by Loga Ramin Torkian & Azam Ali. All concerts at Meany Center located on the Seattle campus of the University of Washington. Series tickets on sale now. Single tickets go on sale on August 1, 2017. You can order online at meanycenter.org or call 206-543-4880 or visit the ticket office at 41st Street between University Way NE & Brooklyn Ave. NE. tickets available via FAX too at 206-685-4141.
The Music of Remembrance organization exists so that the voices of musical witness can be heard. In the past they have organized music of composers who perished in the Holocaust. This year, they shine their light on Japan and the internment camp experience of Japanese Americans in two concerts. The fall concert entitled “Snow Falls” will feature two world premieres by contemporary Japanese composers. “Snow Falls” by Ryuichi Sakamoto is set to a haunting poem by Kiyoko Nagase. The arrangement for actress, violin and piano draws on melodies from Ryuichi Sakamoto’s film score for “Nagasaki: Memories of My Son.” Local actress Naho Shioya will deliver the poem both in Japanese and in an English translation by Empress Michiko. The second composition by Keiko Fujiie entitled “Wilderness Mute” is a song cycle for soprano, baritone, violin, clarinet, cello and double bass which serves as a vehicle for texts by Japanese poets from Hiroshima and Nagasaki in English translation. Fujiie is a Nagasaki native and has been honored with the NJK Symphony Orchestra’s coveted Otaka Prize twice. The program is rounded out by Paul Schoenfeld’s “Sparks of Glory” with guest artist Robert Orth and little-known gems created by French, British and Dutch composers in prison and concentration camps. Sunday, Nov. 5 at 7pm at Nordstrom Recital Hall at Benaroya Hall. A concert set for Spring is entitled “Gaman” by Christophe Chagnard. After Pearl Harbor, more than 120,000 people of Japanese descent – a majority of them American citizens – were forced into detention camps scattered across the United States. Chagnard explores this dark chapter of American history incorporating the stories of individuals, families and artists based on their personal accounts, journals, letters and art works. This multi-media work will tell the story through the imagery and words of Seattle artists Takuichi Fujii and Kamekichi Tokita who were interned at Minidoka Relocation Center in Idaho. Instrumentation will combine traditional Japanese and classical Western instruments along with a narrator/singer combined with visual media projections. Also featured is a composition (as yet untitled) scored for string quartet, piano and voices by Ryuichi Sakamoto. This is planned as a participatory work with members of the public to join performers on stage to honor the names of those who perished in WW II – balanced equally between Japanese and non-Japanese victims of the conflict. Both compositions are world premieres commissioned by Music of Remembrance. Set for May 20, 2018 at 5pm at Nordstrom Recital Hall in Benaroya Hall in downtown Seattle. For details, go to musicofremembrance.org.
Exciting news for lovers of world music and classic Indian percussion. Noted Indian tabla master/composer Zakir Hussain will be the the “Visiting Artist” for the UW Ethnomusicology program this year and will appear in concert at Meany Hall on Nov. 19, 2017. He will present solo work and a new piece created with UW faculty and students. Go to music.washington.edu for details on this and other UW performing arts activities.
Korean contemporary classical musician Yiruma makes his Seattle debut performing a program of Korean compositions. Nov. 24 at 8pm at Benaroya Hall in downtown Seattle.
Sara Porkalob will star in “Howl’s Moving Castle: A New Musical by Diana Wynne Jones” set for Book-It Repertory Theatre’s 2017-2018 season set for Nov. 29 – Dec. 30, 2017. It will be adapted and directed by Myra Platt. Music and lyrics by actor/musician/composer Justin Huertas. Many will be familiar with Studio Ghibli’s film adaptation of this story originally written by Jones. 300 Harrison St. at Seattle Center. 206-216-0833 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Crossroads Bellevue, the Eastside’s live music venue presents free live performances every weekend. On the 2nd Saturday of every month at 5:30pm is 2nd Saturday Family Night with free kid-friendly music performances. On the 3rd Saturday of every month at 6:30pm is Northwest Folklife which presents diverse, family-friendly cultural arts performances. To see the schedule, go to crossroadsbellevue.com. 15600 NE 8th in Bellevue. 425-644-1111.
Edmonds Center for the Arts presents the following – Hawaiian folk/pop duo HAPA perform on Feb. 8, 2018 at 7:30pm. Mystical Arts of Tibet conclude a 5 day residency with a performance of traditional music and the creation of a mandala sand painting. May 11, 2018 at 7:30pm.410 Fourth Ave. N. 425-272-9595.
“Global Rhythms 2017-18” series curated by Jon Kertzer and Daniel Atkinson for Town Hall Seattle brings a concert entitled “Summit in Seattle” with pianist/composer Vjay Iyer in a night of collaboration and improvisation with some of his illustrious and gifted musical colleagues. Set for March 2, 2018 with a venue yet to be announced. To keep in the loop and find out all the other great players in this series, go to www.townhallseattle.org.
Playwright Laureen Yee has a Seattle World Premiere of her play “The Great Leap” set for March 23 – April 22, 2018 at Seattle Repertory Theatre. The company shares this world premiere with the Denver Center for the Performing Arts Theatre Company. The plot revolves around Beijing University basketball coach Wen Chang and Manford, a young rough-around-the edges basketball talent from San Francisco’s Chinatown and how their worlds intersect. At the Leo K. Theatre. 155 Mercer St. Box Office # is 206-443-2222.
The Broadway Center in Tacoma has the following – Former Seattle comic Hari Kondabolu returns to perform at Theatre on the Square on Sat. Nov. 18 at 7:30pm. Best-selling new age/spiritual writer /Deepak Chopra gives a talk on April 12, 2018 at 7:30pm at Pantages Theatre.
In 2018, Kirkland Performance Center has the Golden Dragon Acrobats from Taiwan in performance on Jan. 14 for two shows at 1pm and 5pm. Stand-up comic Hari Kondabolu performs on April 27 at 8pm. 425-893-9900 or go to www.kpcenter.org.
Third Angle New Music presents a series entitled “Japanese Music Now” at 7:30pm on Tuesday – Sept. 19, Wed. – Sept 20 and Thurs. – Sept. 21. Explore the peace of the Portland Japanese Garden while you listen to contemporary Japanese music performed by musicians throughout the landscape. The world premiere of a newly commissioned work by composer Dai Fujikura highlights an assortment of compositions by Toshi Ichiyanagi, Sato Kosugi and Komiji Sakai. 611 SW Kingston. Single tickets go on sale August 1, 2017. Go to app.arts-people.com or email email@example.com for more information.
PICA presents a series of performance works during early September in various venues around Portland. Takahiro Yamamoto performs “Direct Path To Detour, Single Focus” Sept. 8, 9 &15&16 at 6:30pm. The dancer seeks to evoke mental and physical stats that arise at the intersection of multiple value systems, social pressure, expectation, personal experiences and body memory. Yamamoto is originally from Shizuoka, Japan and now based in Portland. At Pica at West End at 415 SW 10th Ave. #300. Dohee Lee – Puri Arts showcases a one-woman performance of “Shaman”. Using wireless sensors to control technology and seamlessly integrate sound, film and animation with her exquisite live performance of dance singing and percussion, this performer creates a special world of sound and movement. Lee was born on Jeju Island, Korea and trained at the master level in music and dance traditions of Korean shamanism. Since 1998, she has been based in Oakland, CA, creating a new art form and has since developed into a genre-defying composer, choreographer and performer. Fri., Sept. 8 and Sat.,Sept. 9 at 6:30pm. Portland’5:Winningstad Theatre at 1111 SW Broadway. Inuit singer/performer/throat-singer Taya Tagaq performs “Retribution” Sept. 15 & 16 at Lincoln Hall, PSU Performance Hall at 1620 SW Park Ave. at 8:30pm. You can reach PICA at 503-242-1419 or go to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Allegiance”, the Broadway musical inspired by actor George Takei’s childhood in internment camp during WWII will come to Los Angeles Feb. 21 – April 1, 2018 with previews from Feb. 21 – 25. East West Players and the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center will co-sponsor the production set for the JACCC’s Aratani Theatre in Little Tokyo. No word yet on whether the production will include the original cast but George Takei will reprise his role. For updates, visit East West Players website.
A new opera “The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs” had a world premiere at the Santa Fe Opera recently with an enthusiastic opening reception from the crowd. The part of Kobun Chino Otogawa, Jobs’s spiritual advisor was filled by Chinese bass singer, Wei Wu. This is a co-production with the Seattle Opera and the San Francisco Opera. It will be part of Seattle Opera’s 2018/19 season. Tickets will be on sale in early 2018 for the Seattle venue.
“Four Nights of Dream” takes four stories from Japanese author Natsume Soseki’s book “Ten Nights of Dream” and turns it into a contemporary chamber opera using New York vocalists and Tokyo instrumentalists on Sept. 13, 15 & 16 at 7:30pm. Other programming is a continuation of the series “NOH-NOW” which looks at how contemporary artists continue to draw inspiration from Japan’s ancient Noh traditions. Performances by various groups Oct. 13 & 14, Nov. 3, 4 & 5, Dec. 7,8 & 9 and Jan. 11, 12, 13 & 14. Japan Society in New York. 333 E. 47th St. 212-715-1258 or go to japansociety.org for details.
Seattle Symphony has hired seven new musicians this season who will take up their new posts at the beginning of the 2017-2018 season. Among the new hires is Andy Liang who will be Section Second Violin. Liang is an accomplished violinist in solo, classical and chamber music. He is a ember of ALKALI, a combination of string players/composers specializing in dynamic original compositions and covers infused with styles ranging from jazz to classical to pop. He received a diploma from the University of Texas at Austin where he was a member of the Cordova Quartet.
The “Fall Arts Guide” September 2017 issue of CityArts magazine’s cover story is on actress/director/performance artist Sara Porkalob who will either be starring in or directing several plays this season. Also featured in that issue is an article on singer/songwriter Isabella Du Graf who has a new album due out soon entitled “Love, Love? Love”. Go to soundcloud.com/isabelladugraf for a musical sample.
Theatre impresario Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Really Useful Group has announced a new partnership with Shanghai Media Group Live which owns 13 theatres and multiple performing arts groups. Webber’s goal is to enable Chinese audiences to enjoy musical theatre to the scale and quality that is produced in Europe and North America. The first Chinese production “Tell Me On A Sunday” will present the story of a woman who moves from the countryside to the big metropolis of Shanghai. Excerpted from The Stage.
Film & Media
“The Villianess” is a new action feature from South Korea directed, produced and co-written by Jung Byung-gil. It tells the story of a trained female assassin who is released from her job when her mentor dies. But when two men from her past with deep dark secrets appear, she has to take matters into her own hands. Opens Sept. 8, 2017 at SIFF Uptown.
“First They Killed My Father” is a new film by Netflix produced and directed by Angelina Jolie adapted from the prize-winning memoir by Loung Ung about the Khmer Rouge era of genocide in Cambodia as seen through the eyes of a child.. It has a one-night only screening at the Crest Cinema Center at 16505 5th Ave. N.E. on Sept. 15 in Shoreline. 206-363-6339.
“Gook” directed, written and staring Justin Chon recently screened at the Seattle International Film Festival. Now it returns for its regular run. The film tells the story of two Korean American brothers who own a struggling shoe store in L.A.’s Koreatown and their unlikely friendship with a street-wise 11 year old African American girl and the chaos that swirls around them all after the riots following the Rodney King verdict. Opens August 25 at the Regal Meridian 16 downtown. 1501 – 7th Ave. 844-462-7342. Also at AMC 10 in the “U” District.
“A Taxi Driver” is a 2017 South Korean film directed by Jang Hoon with Song Kang-ho in the title role and Thomas Kretschmann playing a German journalist. The film was South Korea’s entry for Best Foreign Language Film at the 90th Academy Awards. The plot revolves around the true story of a poor Korean taxi driver who connives his way into driving a German reporter from Seoul to Gwanju for a large sum. Intrigued by reports of a student demonstration for democracy, the reporter hopes to get a scoop on the 1980 Democratization Movement. The film won Song Kang-ho the Best Actor award at the Fantasia International Film Festival and became one of South Korea’s most viewed films in 2019. After a Korean dictator is assassinated, the regime of General Chun Doo-hwan took over. They responded to student demonstrations for democracy in Gwanju with a brutal crackdown in which hundreds of people were killed or injured. The German reporter became one of the few foreign reporters who would break this news story to the world. Screens once a day at 12:30pm at Century Federal Way and XD at 2001 Commons at The Commons in Federal Way, WA. 253-946-0942. In Korean with English subtitles.
The folks at SIFF continue their trail-blazing schedule of new and provocative films. Go to siff.org for details.
A Japanese cult classic “Hausu” is a horror film about a group of Japanese school girls who venture into the wrong house. Oct. 13 at Central Cinema.
The Northwest Film Forum continues its adventuresome programming as a film and community center for Capitol Hill with the following events. “#BKKY” by Nontawat Numbenchapol sees the controversial director push the documentary genre by interviewing 100 young Bangkokites transitioning between high school and university talking about their happiest moments. With a panel discussion led by Thai language and literature teacher Dr. Wiworn Kesavatana. Set for Sept. 10 at 7:30pm. “Local Sightings Film Festival 2017” is the 20th edition of this showcase for Northwest filmmakers which runs from Sept. 22 – 30. Some of the many films shown include these – “Float” by Tristan Seniuk & Vdeak Sip sheds light on the local Cambodian American community and gives you a day in the life of a hustler by the name of Rocky Mang. “Vast Minority” directed by and starring Long Tran is a documentary film about several Northwest Asian American filmmakers reflecting on their place in a mostly white film and TV industry. “Radiating Echoes – What is Beautiful?” by visual/performance artist/filmmaker Etsuko Ichikawa is a short documentary about the idea of beauty and the responses to the question from the blind. There will also be an “Indigenous Showcse:Sandra Osawa Retrospective” on Sept. 24 at 7:30pm with a panel discussion to follow at 9pm. Osawa with her husband Yasu formed Upstream Prouctions to reflect Native American issues in their films. “F. Setsuko” is a window monitor installation by J. P. Schmidt in which images of the iconic Japanese actress Setsuko Hara are digitized, pixelated and amplified and deconstructed. Presented throughout the festival in the theater window. For more information you can email email@example.com. Northwest Film Forum is at 1515 – 12th Ave. 206 – 329 – 2629.
One of the last and oldest independent movie theatres in Seattle is the Grand Illusion Cinema in the University District. They screen a variety of interesting non-commercial “arthouse” films year around. 1403 N.E. 50th St. 206-523-3935. Screenings of some of classic films from Ghibli Studio will be taking place throughout the year.
“Lupin The 3rd – The Castle of Cagliostro” was co-written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki and made its feature film debut in 1979. It will be screened on Thursday, September 14 (English dubbed) and September 19 (English subtitled) both at 12:55pm. “Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind screens September 24 (English dubbed) and September 25 (English dubbed) both at 12:55pm and again Sept. 27 in an English dubbed version. “Spirited Away” screens October 29 (English dubbed) and October 30 (English subtitled) both at 12:55pm and again on Nov. 1 in an English dubbed version. “Howl’s Moving Castle plays November 26 (English dubbed) and November 27 (English dubbed) both at 12:55pm and again on Nov. 29 in an English dubbed version. Tickets can be purchased online starting Friday, August 18. All screenings locally at the Varsity Theatre in the University District. For full details on screenings in your area, go to www.FathomEvents.com for details.
Tasveer announces their 12th Annual Tasveer South Asian Film Festival with a special focus on Nepal set for Oct. 6 – 15, 2017 screening at various sites around the Puget Sound. Over 45 films will be shown with 10 from Nepal alone. Tickets go on sale on Sept. 6, 2017. Go to tasveer.org for complete details.
FILM MOVEMENT celebrates its 15th Anniversary with a spate of home entertainment DVD releases of recent films, some of which played the recent Seattle International Film Festival. August sees the release of Hirokazu Kore-eda’s “After The Storm.” Other releases include Yang Zhang’s Tibetan-set epic Western-style action drama, “Soul On A String” as well as a blu-ray release of Takeshi Kitano’s classic crime drama, “Hana-Bi (Fireworks).”
“Finding Kukan” is a documentary film by Robin Lung was a crowd favorite at the Seattle SIFF 2017. It involved the search for a Chinese American film producer of an Academy Award-winning WWII war-time documentary. Now it’s back in a deluxe edition with a bonus feature of footage of the original film shot in China. DVDs and streaming versions are available to schools, museums, corporations and non-profits. It has proven to be a great teaching tool, starting thoughtful discussions about race, gender, history and filmmaking. More fall screenings are scheduled for various cities including Seattle. Go to findingkukan.com for details.
“Signature Move” is a new film that looks at modern families and the complexities of life in its many forms. It debuts in Chicago at The Music Box Theatre on Sept. 29, 2017. The film is directed by Jennifer Reeder and written by Fawzia Mrirza and Lisa Donato. Stars Mirza, Shabana Azumi, Sari Sanchez, Audrey Francis, Charin Alvarez, Molly Brennan and Mark Hood.
“Green Gold” is a new documentary film by John D. Liu in which he documents large-scale ecosystem restoration projects in China, Africa, South America and the Middle East, highlighting the benefits for people and the planet of undertaking these events globally. Available for screening online.
“World Warrior 2” is a Chinese film that has broken box office records in China and played at AMC theatres in Seattle. It stars a Chinese super hero Leng Feng who conquers all in an African country overrun by American insurgents and a world epidemic. The Communist party has cheered the success of this film saying it proves that Chinese people yearn for their own heroes.
Pacific Film Archive in Berkeley, Calif. Is one of the greatest depositories of film on the West Coast. They show archival and foreign films that are hard to view anywhere else on a weekly basis. Two important series screening soon include the following -“Amit Dutta’s Cinematic Museum” looks at a filmmaker who examines India’s contemporary artists and classical painters. Sept. 3 – 10, 2017. “A Golden Age of Chinese Cinema 1947-52” is a rare cache of films from a rich period of Chinese cinema screening from Sept. 30 – Oct. 21, 2017. Imported from the China Film Archive. 2155 Center St. in Berkeley. 510-642-0808 or go to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Written Arts
Elliott Bay Book Company presents a series of readings and events. All readings at the bookstore unless noted otherwise. S. Shankar who directs the Creative Writing department at the University of Hawai’i will read from his new novel entitled “Ghost in the Tamarind” (UH Press) which tells the story of a couple who struggle against colonialism and the prejudices in their own communities that threaten to destroy them. Set amidst several crucial eras in India’s history. On Tues., Sept. 12 at 6:30pm at the Capitol Hill Branch of the Seattle Public Library at 425 Harvard Ave. E. Co-presented by Seattle Public Library. 206-684-4715 or go to www.spl.org. Barbara Johns talks with Tom Ikeda of Densho about her book, “The Hope of Another Spring” (UW Press) detailing the life of a Northwest Japanese American artist and his diary and sketches on internment camp life on Sept. 13 at 7pm. Co-sponsored by Densho, EB and the Seattle Public Library. Johns’ talk takes place at the Central Public Library at 1000 Fourth Ave. downtown. Robert Wright will talk about his book entitled “Why Buddhism is True (Simon & Schuster) on Sept. 14 at the book store. “Words on Water: Shashi Tharoor & Friends” is set for Tues., Sept. 19. Due to the renovation of Seattle Asian Art Museum, this annual roundtable of South Asian writers takes place this year on the East Side at Bellevue Arts Museum instead. Co-hosted by the Gardner Center For Asian Arts & Ideas with Elliott Bay Book Co. and Teamwork Arts. Tharoor is a noted author, politician and international civil servant (at the United Nations). His most recent book is “An Era of Darkness: The British Empire in India (Aleph).His son and fellow author Kanishk Tharoor will read from a debut book of short stories entitled “ Swimmer Among The Stars” (Farrar Straus & Giroux). Names of the other South Asian writers to appear have not yet been announced. For details go to sponsor websites www.elliottbaybook.com, www.seattleartmuseum.org or www.bellevuearts.org. The Bellevue Arts Museum is located at 510 Bellevue Way NE. Local author Bharti Kirchner is interviewed by mystery writer Curt Colbert about her new detective novel “Season of Sacrifice : A Maya Mallick Mystery” (Severn House Publishers) at the bookstore on Sept. 20 at 7pm. Oct. 2 brings Celeste Ng and her new novel entitled “Little Fires Everywhere” (Penguin Books) at 7pm at EB. On Oct. 10, Rakesh Satyal reads from “No One Can Pronounce My Name” (Picador), her comic novel about loneliness in the mid-west and immigrant outsiders who struggle to fit in with not only society-at-large but their own families. Oct. 1 at Seattle University’s Campion Tower, noted economist/activist Muhammad Yunus will speak on his book with the optimistic title, “A World of Three Zeros: The New Economies of Zero Poverty, Zero Unemployment, and Zero Net Carbon Emissions”. M. Evelina Galang talks about her new book entitled “Lola’s House” in which she compiled personal histories from 16 surviving “comfort women” who were forced into sexual slavery during WWII. Seattle Central Public Library on Oct. 10 at 7pm. Free. 1000 4th Ave. downtown. Seattle-raised poet/writer Paisley Rekdal makes a welcome return on the heels of two new published books – a volume of poetry entitled “Imaginary Vessels” nominated for a Washington State Book Award and “The Broken Country”, a meditation in prose on the ramifications of the Vietnam war on America’s culture and psyche. She reads at the bookstore on Nov. 16, 2017. Dec. 2 is the annual St. Peter’s Holiday Fair which runs from 10am – 3pm. Join EB here at this annual holiday event which features food, arts & crafts and books. 1610 S. King St. 206-323-5250. Khizr Khan is remembered for his stirring speech at the National Democratic Convention speaking as a parent of a Muslim American son killed in action in the Middle East. He will be speaking on Dec. 8, 2017. Khan is the author of two new books. “This Is Our Constitution” (Knopf Books for Young Readers) written for young adults to familiarize them with the US Constitution and “An American Family” (Penguin/Random House) which is a memoir. Elliott Bay Book Company is at 1521 – 10th Ave on Capitol Hill. 206-624-6600.
Raj Patel, author of “The Value of Nothing: How to Reshape Market Society and Redefine Democracy” and his latest volume entitled “A History of the World in Seven Cheap Things: A Guide to Capitalism, Nature, and the Future of the Planet” talks about these things and others. Oct. 11 at Rainer Arts Center at 7:30pm. $5 admission.
Local slam poet Roberto Ascalon and playwright/writer/poet Bob Flor read on Wed., Oct. 18 at one of Seattle’s best live written arts venues, the series “Words West” in West Seattle. At C&P Coffee House at 5612 California St. S.W.
Laura Atkins and Stan Yogi are co-authors of a new biography for young readers done in graphic novel/manga form entitled “Fred Korematsu Speaks Up” (Heyday Books). Korematsu challenged all the way to the Supreme Court the government’s WWII orders forcing Japanese Americans from their homes to be imprisoned in internment camps. Atkins and Yogi will discuss their book and do a book-signing. Sat., Oct. 28 at 2pm. Co-sponsored by Densho, Elliott Bay Book Company, Fred T. Korematsu Center for Law & Equality, Seattle University School of Law and Seattle Chapter JACL. At the Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience. Go to email@example.com for details. 719 S. King. 206-623-5124.
The Seattle poetry landmark bookstore Open Books continues to shine and prosper under new owner Billie Swift. Besides being one of the few bookstores in the country to stock poetry and nothing but poetry, they have a hot line-up of readings year around as well. Sept. 26 brings new-to-Seattle poet Ryo Yamaguchi who reads from “The Refusal of Suitors” (Noemi Press) and Mark Tardi from Poland where he reaches at the University of Lodz. He has translated contemporary Polish poetry. He is the author of “The Circus of Trust” and other books. Sept. 29 the store hosts Meghan McClure and Michael Schmeltzer who have collaborated on a work of creative non-fiction entitled “A Single Throat Opens” (Black Lawrence Press). All readings at 7pm. 2414 N. 45th St. in Seattle’s Wallingford neighborhood. 206-633-0811.
Poetry Northwest, one of the oldest literary magazines in the area celebrates recent issues of their magazine with a group reading by a few contributing writers including Alan Chong Lau. Tues., Sept. 12 at 7pm. Phinney Books at 7405 Greenwood Ave. N. 206-297-2665.
The University Book Store has these events planned at their various branches. Barbara Johns, Northwest art historian talks about her book about a Seattle Japanese artist and his WWII internment camp diary of art and writing in “The Hope of Another Spring” (UW Press) on Thurs., Sept. 21 at 7pm in the Tacoma branch located at 1754 Pacific Ave. in downtown Tacoma. 253-692-4300 or Tacoma@ubookstore.com. On Sept. 23 at 2pm, catch author June Jo Lee as she talks about her children’s book entitled “Chef Roy Choi And the Street Food Remix” (Readers to Eaters) at the University District branch. Again at the same branch, catch N.Y. Times best-selling graphic novelist Ben Hatke as he’s interviewed by fellow graphic novelist/artist Kazu Kibuishi about his new graphic novel. Tues., Sept. 26 at 7pm. Julie Kim has a book launch for her debut children’s book entitled “Where’s Halmoni?” (Sasquatch Books) on Thurs., Oct. 5 at 7pm. 4326 University Way NE. 206-634-3400 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Hugo House Literary Series has the following. All readings are at Hugo House unless otherwise noted. Rowan Hisayo Buchanan reads from her debut book entitled Solmaz Sharif’s collection “Look” (Graywolf) was nominated for the National Book Award. She reads with Sonora Jha who is the current Hugo House Writer-in-Residence, Joy Mills and Meghan Daum under the theme of “Sequels”. The reading is Sept. 15 at 7:30pm at Fred Wildlife Refuge at 7:30pm at 128 Belmont Ave. E. 21 & over only. “Two Countries: US Daughters and Sons of Immigrant Parents” is a new anthology edited by Tina Schumann that gets a book launch on Oct. 26 at 7pm. Free. Seven local contributors will read including Shin Yu Pai, Michael Schmeltzer and others. Valerie Hsiung reads from her third full-length collection “efg” along with local poets Don Mee Choi, Jane Wong and Amaranth Borsuk on Nov. 1 at 7pm. 1021 Columbia St. 206-322-7030 or try email@example.com.
Third Place Books has the following readings at various Puget Sound bookstore locations. Best-selling young adult sci-fi author Marie Lu reads from her new novel entitled “Warcross” (G.P. Putnam’s Sons for Young Readers) in which a teenage hacker inadvertently becomes a player in an online game with higher stakes when the game’s inventor asks her to become a spy. Sept. 20 at 7pm at the Lake Forest Park location. 17171 Bothell Way NE #A101 in Lake Forest Park, WA. 206-366-3333. Graphic novelist Nidhi Chanani talks about her new book entitled “Pashmina” (FirstSecond Books) in which an Indian American high school girl struggles to fit in at her school and then discovers more about her family’s history with the help of her mother’s magical pashmina. Oct. 28 at 4pm at the Seward Park location of Third Place Books.5041 Wilson Ave. S. 206-474-2200.
Northwest author Jamie Ford (“Hotel on the Corner of Bitter And Sweet”) tours Washington State on behalf of his new novel entitled “Love And Other Consolation Prizes” (Ballantine), a story based on actual events about a half-Chinese orphan who is raffled off to a good home at the World’s Fair in Seattle at the turn of the century. He reads on September 14 at Auntie’s Bookstore at 402 S. Main in Spokane at 7pm. On Sept. 15 at the Wheelock Branch of Tacoma Public Library at 6:30pm. Call 253-617-7811 for details. September 16 he will be at Third Place Books at 7pm. 17171 Bothell Way NE in Lake Forest Park, WA. Call 206-366-3316 for details. He reads on September 23 in the series “West Sound Reads” at 2:30pm at South Kitsap High School in Port Orchard, WA. Call 360-475-9170 for details.
Seattle author Bharti Kirchner shows her versatility by tackling a new genre. She embarks on a new mystery series with an Indian-American detective. The first in the series is entitled “Season of Sacrifice: A Maya Mallick Mystery” (Severn House Publishers). She reads and does a book signing on Sept. 20 at 7pm at Elliott Bay Book Company on Capitol Hill at 206-624-6600. She does it again on Oct. 10 at 7pm at the University Book Store in Seattle’s University District. 206-634-3400 or go to ubookstore.com.
Northwest art historian Barbara Johns talks about “the Hope of Another Spring” (UW Press), her book on a Northwest Japanese American artist and his diary and drawings about life in an internment camp during WWII. Sept. 20 at 7pm at sponsored by Friends of Mukai at Vashon Land Trust Building. Go to friendsofmukai.org for details. She reads again at Seattle branch of Kinokuniya Bookstore on Oct. 7. At 2pm. 525 S. Weller St. 206-587-2477.
Local writer/artist Sanae Ishida is back with a new addition to her popular “Little Kunoichi” series. Her new children’s book with her charming color illustrations is entitled “Chibi Samurai Wants A Pet – An Adventure with Little Kunoichi the Ninja Girl” (Sasquatch). She reads from the book at Kinokuniya Bookstore on Sept. 17, 2017 at 2pm. 525 S. Weller St. 206-587-2477.
Local writer Richard Chiem’s “You Private Person” is a quirky collection of stories that meander in a quiet dreamy day-to-day world full of moments of love and loss. It was such a Seattle underground classic the first time around that it has been reissued in a revised 2nd edition by Sorry House Press. Chiem reads in good company with Rae Armantrout and Rebecca Brown. On Oct. 12 at Gramma Poetry Space in Pioneer Square at 3rd and Washington. Doors open at 7pm and the reading starts at 7:30pm. Free. Food & drinks and broadsides from each reader will be available. 300 South Washington St., Unit Z.
Noted novelist, filmmaker & Buddhist priest Ruth Ozeki (“A Tale For The Time Being”) will be part of the Hugo House 2017-2018 line-up for the series “Word Works: Writers on Writing.” She will speak on the craft and art of writing on Feb. 23, 2018. EJ Koh joins Joshua Ferris and Melissa Febos as part of the Hugo Literary Series on March 23, 2018 at 7:30pm. Go to hugohouse.org for details.
The July/August 2017 issue of Poetry Magazine is a special issue devoted to “Asian American Poets” produced in association with the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center and launched their Smithsonian Asian American Literature Festival that was held July 27 – 29 in Washington, D.C. Guest edited by Lawrence-Minh Bui Davis, Timothy Yu and Tarfia Faizullah. For more information on the Center, go to smithsonianapa.org/lit. For more information on Poetry Magazine, go to poetryfoundation.org.
Seattle poet E. J. Koh’s debut collection won the 2016 Pleiades Press Editor’s Prize. Entitled “A Lesser Love” (Pleiades Press), there will be a book launch party event at 7:30pm at Hugo House on Sept. 23, 2017. Koh will read from the new book and there will be a book-signing and refreshments. 1021 Columbia St. 206-322-7030.
Hugo House has announced their line-up of writers appearing for the 2017-2018 Hugo Literary Series, part of which will coincide with the institution’s move to a new and permanent home on the same site of their old location. Don Mee Choi as part of the Bagley Wright Lecture Series will speak on the topic, “Translation is a Mode=Translation is an Anti-Neocolonial Mode” on Oct. 18 at 7pm at the Fireside Room of the Sorrento Hotel. This event is free. Under the topic, “Area Protected by Neighborhood Watch” on Nov. 10, 2017 Iranian American novelist Porochista Khakpour will join Jericho Brown and Rachel Kessler with musicians at Fred Wildlife Refuge at 7:30pm.at 128 Belmont Ave. E. 21 & over only for this venue. The series closer with the topic “There Goes the Neighborhood” features Bangladeshi American poet Tarfia Faizullah with Jami Attenberg and others is on May 11, 2018 at the new Hugo House auditorium at their new, improved, original location of 1634 – 11th Ave. All events at 7:30pm. For details, go to hugohouse.org or call 206-453-1937.
Seattle writer Donna Miscolta is part of the fall “Seattle Writes” series where local writers teach writing workshops. Go to www.spl.org/seattlewrites for more details.
Noted local photographer/writer Dean Wong is one of the winners of the Before Columbus Foundation’s Thirty-Eighth Annual American Book Awards for his book of photographs/stories entitled “Seeking the Light: Four Decades in Chinatown” (Chin Music). Writer Shawna Yang Ryan also won for her novel about Taiwan entitled “Green Island” (Knopf). All winners will be formally recognized on October 22, 2017 at the SF Jazz Center in San Francisco from 12 – 2:30pm. Free and open to the public. Congratulation Dean on an honor richly deserved!
The Seattle Public Library has announced their Washington State Book Award Finalists for books published in 2016. In “Books For Adult Categories”, Sci-fi author Ted Chiang was nominated for “Stories of Your Life and Others.” In the category of “Poetry”, Don Mee Choi was nominated for “Hardly War”, Paisley Rekdal was nominated for “Imaginary Vessels” and Michael Schmeltzer was nominated for “Blood Song.” In the “Books For Youth Categories” under the “Picture Book” format, David Jacobson’s “Are You an Echo? The Lost Poetry of Misuzu Kaneko” translated by Sally Ito and Michiko Tsuboi and illustrated by Toshikado Hajiri was nominated and in the “Books for Early Readers” category, Liz Wong’s “Quackers” was nominated.
Noted poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil reads on May 21, 2018 at 7:30pm at McCaw Hall as part of Seattle Arts & Lectures Poetry Series. She was born in Chicago to a Filipina mother an South Indian father. She earned her BA and MFA from Ohio State University. She is the author of “Miracle Fruit”, “At The Drive-In Volcano” and “Lucky Fish.” Forthcoming in 2018 is a new book of illustrated nature essays entitled “World of Wonder” and a new book of poetry, “Oceanic.”
Noted New York Times book reviewer Michiko Kakutani who for years held reign at the newspaper has retired. She will continue to freelance although futures plans for her career were not announced.
One finds it hard to keep up with the steady stream of new titles coming out even in the limited categories of works by or about Asian Americans and new titles on Asia but here’s a recent sampling. Please contact me if anyone is interested in reviewing any of the below titles for the International Examiner. Thanks! –
“My Rice Bowl – Korean Cooking Outside The Lines (Sasquatch) is by Rachel Yang and Jess Thomson. The James Beard Best Chef-nominee and co-owner of local Northwest restaurants Joule, Trove, Revel and Revelry, Yang’s book explains her deeply comforting Korean fusion cuisine inspired by cultures around the world.
“Fierce Femmes And Notorious Liars: A Dangerous Trans Girls Confabulours Memoir” (Metonymy Press) by Kai Cheng Thom. This book reveals the anger, the alienation and the brilliance of the struggles of radicalized trans women.
“Elsa – An Unauthorized Autobiography” (Black Radish) by Angela Veronica Wong unfolds the story of a fictional 18th –century French demimondaine and mistress of Louis XV. The story is a poetic meditation on gender identity and the precarious survival of women in a patriarchal society.
“Muslim Melancholia” (Red Mountain Press) by Samina Hadi-Tabassum is a new collection of poems that deals with the passage of an Indian woman from India to the graffitied streets of Chicago and beyond and offers a powerful witness to what it means to be a woman, a Muslim and an American.
Bamboo Ridge – A Journal of Hawai’I Literature & Arts has been around since 1979 serving as a creative force for literary activity in the islands. Their latest issue #110 has a special artist portfolio on the installation artist Marques Hanalei Marzan. Guest-edited by Donald Carreira Ching and Misty-Lynn Sanico.
“Occident” (Called Back Books) is the debut book of poetry by Bay Area poet/editor Gillian Olivia Blythe Hamel. The poems serve as a rumination of language and the space between place & experience and incident & accident.
“Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows” (Morrow) by Balli Kaur Jaswal is a comic novel of a close-knit Punjabi community in London and the scandal that ensues when a group of proper Sikh widows taking a creative writing class discover erotica.
“Small Beauty” (Metonymy Press) by Jia Qing Wilson-Yang is the story of a Chinese Canadian trans woman. Reeling from a cousin’s death she retreats to the ancestral house in the country and battles her demons. A quiet meditation on grief, race and community.
“The Broken Country – On Trauma, A Crime, and the Continuing Legacy of Vietnam” (University of Georgia Press) by Seattle-raised author Paisley Rekdal looks at the consequences of the Vietnam War for Vietnamese, Americans and herself. A violent incident on the author’s campus serves as a springboard for examining the long-term cultural and psychological effects of the war.
TU Books is the young adult imprint of children’s book publisher Lee & Low Books. Two new titles from this imprint are the following – “Rebel Seoul” by Axie Oh looks at a post-war East Asia in 2199. When a young soldier falls in love, he begins to question his loyalty to an oppressive regime that creates weapons out of humans. “Ahimsa” by Supriya Kelkar looks at the non-violent resistance movement of Gandhi in the 1940’s through the eyes of a young girl who steps into the struggle when her mother is jailed.
“Some Beheadings” (Nightboat Books) is a new book of poetry by Aditi Machado due out Oct. 3, 2017. These poems travel through the mind as well as winding their way from India’s Western Ghats to the Mohave Desert asking questions like “What does thinking feel like?”.
“Little Fires Everywhere” (Penguin) is the new novel by Celeste Ng, the best-selling author of “Everything I Never Told You”. In it she examines suburbia asking key questions such as issues of race versus privilege and how it affects parenting.
“Where’s Halmoni?” (Little Bigfoot) by Julie Kim is a beautifully illustrated (in graphic novel-style) children’s book that follows two young siblings as they search for their grandmother in a world populated by creatures from Korean folklore.
“A House Made of Water” (Sibling Rivalry Press” by Michelle Lin delves into culture, myth and history using her family’s immigration as a link to both the past and future. Poems of passion and depth that haunt.
Kazumi Chin’s “Having a Coke With Godzilla” (Sibling Rivalry) is a debut collection of poems that celebrate feminism, empathy and solidarity with community. The poet knows the first Godzilla was an atom bomb and that to sing, fist you have to learn to breathe.
“Moon Princess” (Chicken House) by Barbara Laban is a mystery-adventure novel set in China about a girl whose mother who has disappeared, and the invisible animal friends who help her follow the clues.
“Letters To Memory” (Coffee House Press) is award-winning novelist Karen Tei Yamashita’s memoir of Japanese American internment during WWII and its repercussions for her family. Handwritten letters, pictures, and paintings bring the past to life. Due out September, 2017.
“Harmless Like You” (Norton) marks the fictional debut of Rowan Hisayo Buchanan in a book about multiracial identity, motherhood, familial bonds and the struggle to be an artist.
Indonesian American activist/author/artist Innosanto Nagara has written and illustrated two interesting picture board books for children on Seven Stories Press that inspires them to get involved in issues and community. “A is for Activist” encourages kids to participate in protesting what is unjust. “Counting on Community” encourages the little ones to learn meaningful change by doing positive things in the community in which they are part of.
“Goodbye, Vitamin”(Henry Holt) by Rachel Khong, veteran food writer/editor of Lucky Peach Magazine & Books fame makes her fictional debut with this book. It tells the story of a woman in mid-life crisis from a break-up summoned home to care for an eccentric father slipping into dementia and a mother who is lucidly erratic. Rich with irony and humor, the story charts a journey of love, loss and finding one’s place in the world.
“A Twenty Minute Silence Followed By Applause” (Sarabande) is an essay by Shawn Wen which is a thoughtful meditation on the work and genius of French mime artist Marcel Marceau.
Ch’ae Manshik is one of modern Korea’s most accomplished writers but his work is scarcely represented in English translation because of the challenges posed by his distinctive voice and colloquial style. Local Seattle translators Bruce and Ju-Chan Fulton remedy that situation with a deft translation of his various styles and genres in “Sunset – A Ch’ae Manshik Reader” (Columbia University Press). Here you will find a choice selection of his work in the novella form, short fiction, essay, travel writing, theatre and even children’s stories. A dark humor and quick wit bubbles through each sentence.
“Still Out of Place” (Bamboo Ridge), a book of poems by Christy Passion opens a window to blue-collar life in the Hawaiian Islands with unflinching honesty and pain and yes, a hard-won beauty.
“Tropical Renditions – Making Musical Scenes in Filipino America” (Duke) by Christine Bacareza Balance looks at the music and performing arts to reveal dimensions of Filipino American history and cultural expressions.
“Lotus” (Henry Holt) is the debut novel by Lijia Zhang and was inspired by the secret life of the author’s grandmother and follows a young prostitute caught between past traditions and modern life in urban China.
“The Maids” (New Directions) by Junichiro Tanizaki as translated by Michael P. Cronin complements his classic novel, “The Makioka Sisters” but bears witness not to the masters of the house but instead gives voice to a chorus of servants.
Tara Books, children’s book publisher from India is out once again with two beautifully designed volumes. “A Village Is a Busy Place” by Rohima Chitrakar & V. Geetha is a brilliantly colored book that unfolds like a vertical mural illuminating the mosaic wheel of life contained in a single village. “This Truck Has Got To Be Special” by Rana, Kulaudor, Namaz & Khan shows you how truck drivers in India turn their vehicles into artistic creations that light up the landscape along India’s highways and byways.
“Sorry to Disrupt The Peace” (McSweeny’s) by Patty Yumi Cottrell is the story of a single woman who learns of her adoptive brother’s suicide and returns to her hometown to uncover the real reasons behind his death. Noted novelist Ed Lin calls it “a sort of Korean American noir, lean and wry and darkly compelling.”
“I Believe In A Thing Called Love” (FSG) by Maurene Goo tracks a Korean American teenage girl who’s a disaster in romance. Then she comes up with the idea of using “K-Drama” as a map to true love with a boy she’s got a crush on with mixed results.
“Men Without Women” (Knopf) is a new translation of short stories by Haruki Murakami by Ted Goossen and Philip Gabriel that looks at men who find themselves alone. Originally published in Japan in 2014, it should serve to placate American fans until his most recent novel gets translated into English.
“Step Up to the Plate, Maria Singh” (Lee & Low) by Uma Krishnaswami. A nine-year old girl wants to play softball for a girl’s team but the year is 1945 in Yuba City, CA. and her dad is from India and her mom is from Mexico and discriminatory laws still rule the land. How does she find a way to step up to the plate?
“The Best We Could Do” (Abrams Comicarts) by Thi Bui is a graphic novel about the anguish of immigration and the lasting effects that displacement has on a child and her family.
Akhil Sharma won the International Dublin Literary Award and the Folio Prize for his novel, “Family Life.” Here, he returns with a collection of darkly comic short stories in “A Life Of Adventure And Delight” (Norton).
“ME: A Novel” (Akashic) by Tomoyuki Hoshino as translated by Charles De Wolf tells the unsettling story of a young man who suffers an identity crisis after getting tangled up in a telephone scam. With an afterword by esteemed Japanese writer Kenzaburo Oe.
Northwest writer Jamie Ford, author of “Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet” returns with another novel set in Seattle. “Love And Other Consolation Prizes” (Ballantine) recounts the true story of a half-Chinese orphan who is auctioned off in a raffle at Seattle’s World’s Fair and how his life unfolds as he struggles to keep family secrets of the past from surfacing.
“Lemongrass, Ginger and Mint – Vietnamese Cookbook” (Rockridge Press) by Linh Nguyen show you how to cook classic Vietnamese favorites at home.
L.A. poet and small press editor Chiwan Choi burst upon the scene with “The Flood”, a searing collection of poems involving family and creating a place in the world. With “The Yellow House” (CCM) he ups the ante with poems that smolder with a nuanced power. Go to copingmechanisms.net for details.
“Chow Chop Suey – Food And The Chinese American Journey” (Columbia) by Anne Mendelson looks at the sweep of history that brought Chinese cooking to America.
The award-winning Japanese writer/playwright Abe Kobo has an early seimi-autobiographical novel entitled “Beasts Head For Home” (Columbia) newly translated by Richard F. Calichman. The story tells the tale of a Japanese youth in Manchuria at the end of WWII and his perilous journey home. In it , the character deals with issues of identity, belonging and the complexities of human behavior.
Jet Tila grew up in L.A.’s Thai Town and learned cooking from his Cantonese grandmother and working at his family’s famed Bangkok Market, the first Thai market to open in the U.S. He turns that expertise to good use in “101 Asian Dishes You Need To Cook Before You Die” (Page Street Publishing) using simplified techniques and easy to use & buy ingredients.
“The Windfall” (Crown) by Diksha Basu is a satire of a middle-class family in New Delhi who come into money and how it changes them.
“Pattan’s Pumpkin – A Traditional Flood Story from Southern India” (Candlewick) by Chitra Soundar and illustrated by Frane Lessaac is based on a traditional tale told by the Irula people. Forget Noah’s ark and delight in a family’s journey to safety down a river in a giant pumpkin.
“Meeting With My Brother” (Columbia) is a novella by Yi Mun-yol about when two brothers from North and South Korea have a reunion. Explores Korea’s partition and hope of reunification. Translated by noted American writer Heinz Insu Fenkl with Yoosup Chang.
“Wabi Sabi” (Bloomsbury) by Francesc Miralles as translated by Julie Wark tells the story of a Spaniard who receives an enigmatic postcard from a Japanese pen pal that puts him on a plane to Japan to decipher the message.
“Happy Dreams” (Amazon Crossing) by Jia Pingwa is a novel translated by Nicky Harman which comes out Oct. 1, 2017. It tells the story of two best friends who leave the country to the city with dreams of a better life.
Hiromi Kawakami’s novel, “The Nakano Thrift Shop” (Europa) as translated by Allison Markin Powell looks at the staff and customers of a little thrift shop and examines their various relationships.
“When Dimple Met Rishi” (Simon Pulse) by Sandhya Menon is a young adult novel of two teenagers sent to summer school by their parents in hopes of matching them up. Their initial encounter is rocky but gradually they become more than friends.
“Scarborough” (Arsenal Pulp Press) by Catherine Hernandez. This novel follows the lives of three children who inhabit Toronto’s low-income east end. It explores the positive impact of neighborhood programming amongst the poor and its devastation when the very governments who established these programs come and go.
“Chef Roy Choi and The Street Food Remix” (Readers to Eaters) by Jacqueline Briggs Martin and June Jo Lee and illustrated by Man One brings the story of L.A. homeboy Chef Roy Choi and his innovative ways of presenting, selling and combining cultural food traditions from his food truck to kids. Each page will appeal to children with the energy of graffiti artist Man One illustrations and who doesn’t like to eat?
Jade Chang’s “The Wangs Vs. The World” (Mariner) is a feel-good hilarious saga of a Chinese American family on the skids who band together and go on a road trip to find unity. Available in a new paperback edition.
“Starfish” (Simon Pulse” by Akemi Dawn Bowan (due out in September) is an emotionally resonant young adult novel about a biracial teen who struggles with social anxiety, a narcissist mother and rejection from art school only to find her own identity as a person on a journey to the West Coast.
Hye-Young Pyun’s “The Hole” (Arcade) is a psychological thriller about a man awakening from a coma after a terrible car accident that caused his wife’s death.
“Hawaiian By Birth – Missionary Children, Bicultural Identity and U.S. Colonalism in the Pacific” (Nebraska) by Joy Schulz looks at how race, gender, sexuality, class and religion merge to advance U.S. imperialism in the Pacific.
“Home Fire” (riverhead Books) is a novel by Kamila Shamsie that tells the story of the choices people make for love and how secrets and family loyalty can tie lives together and also set them out of control.
“The Burning Girl” (Norton) by Claire Messud tells the tale of the friendship between two girls and a piercing story of adolescence and identity.
“The Forbidden Temptation of Baseball” (Spark Press) by Seattle author Dori Jones Yang is a young adult novel based on an episode from history when 120 boys were sent by the Emperor of China to New England in the 1870’s. It captures the tension between love and hate that is culture shock.
“Miss Burma” (Grove Atlantic) is an historical novel by Charmaine Craig that tells the story of a family caught between war, revolution, desire and loss. Conveys the struggle of the Karen hill tribe people and their search for freedom in Burma.
“Maria Mahoi of The Islands” (New Star Books) by Jean Barman is an important document on the history of Indigenous Hawaiians in the early Northwest.
“Remembering 1942 And Other Chinese Stories” (Arcade) by Liu Zhenyun as translated by Howard Goldblatt and Sylvia Li-chun Lin showcases six of this Chinese author’s best short stories with a diverse cast of ordinary people struggling with obstacles that are bureaucratic, economic and personal.
“The Accusation – Forbidden Stories From Inside North Korea” (Grove Atlantic) by Bandi is a book of short stories of North Koreans enduring day to day challenges and threatened by starvation, betrayal and brutality Translated by the ever prolific Deborah Smith.
“A Life of Adventure And Delight” (Norton) is a new book of short stories by Akhil Sharma that evokes Chekov and Trevor. The author sees how the burdens of family and culture shape his character’s choices whether in India, New York or New Jersey.
Debbi Michiko Florence’s character Jasmine Toguchi explores such Japanese cultural customs as Girl’s Day and mochi making in her ongoing series that includes titles like “Super Sleuth” and “Mochi Queen” both on FSG books. Coming next in the series is “Drummer Girl”. For young adults with a bonus activity in every book.
“Shanghai Grand” (St. Martin’s) is a sprawling history of Shanghai by Tara Grescoe on the eve of WWII and the international cast of characters caught in a whirlpool of intrigue, conflict, love and history.
“Tell Me Everything You Don’t Remember-The Stroke That Changed My Life” (Ecco) by Christine Hyung-Oak Lee. A compelling memoir of a world turned upside down and how the writer tries to find order out of chaos.
“Where The Past Begins” (Ecco) is popular novelist Amy Tan’s (“The Joy Luck Club”) memoir which explores family history in a raw and personal fashion. Due out Oct. 10, 2017.
“101 Changemakers – Rebels And Radicals Who Changed US History” (Haymarket). Edited by Michele Bollinger & Dao X. Tran. This is a collection of profiles of Americans who made a difference and fought for social justice. Consider it a Howard Zinn-style history of America for middle school students.
“Manihi Moves A Mountain” (Creston) is a children’s story by Nancy Churnin with art by Danny Popovici is the true story of a man in India who carved out a 360 foot road through a mountain after his wife died due to a lack of medical attention. The road provided access to a larger town that had medical facilities and more daily supplies for villagers.
“Salivating Monstrous Plant” (Cordite Books) by poet Tanya Thaweeskuichai positions itself on a map of contemporary poetics stretching from Sydney to Singapore and Stockholm to Seattle.
Amani Al-khatahtbeh founded a website that gave a candid account of what it’s like to be a young Muslim woman in the wake of 9/11 and a Trump presidency. Now she tells her story of that journey in “Muslim Girl – A Coming of Age” (Simon & Schuster).
“The Strange Disappearance of a Bollywood Star” (Redhook) by Vaseem Khan tells the story of Inspector Chopra who discovers in Bollywood, the truth is often stranger than fiction. Part of an ongoing series on a detective and his baby elephant solving cases together.
“Reading With Patrick – A Teacher, a Student and a Life-changing Friendship” (Random House) by Michelle Kuo traces the life of a Harvard grad who joins “Teach For America” and finds herself in the Mississippi Delta. Her favorite student is an 8th grader who wins a school-wide award as “most improved” only to learn later his is imprisoned for murder. But the story doesn’t end there. She returns to the Delta to continue his education in prison. Their relationship transforms the lives of both of them.
“The Devourers” (Del Ray) by Indra Das tells a tale of a college professor who encounters a stranger with a bizarre confession. He bears witness by transcribing the stranger’s tales. Laced with elements of folklore and fantasy, this book takes the reader to places familiar yet made new again.
“The Art of Confidence” (Kensington) by Wendy Lee tells the saga of a Chinese immigrant artist asked to paint a forgery of a masterpiece destined to earn millions for a Chelsea art dealer. This novel explores the fascination of great art and the lengths to which some are driven to create it and to possess it.
“Grand Canyon” (Roaring Brook Press) by Jason Chin is a picture book about a father and daughter who explore this area through its past and present. Profusely illustrated with informative text, the perfect book to introduce your children to the wonders of our natural world.
“Why Buddhism Is True: The Science and Philosophy of Meditation and Enlightenment” (Simon & Schuster) by Robert Wright gives a personal account of how natural selection has led to delusion and unhappiness and how we can escape that fate through meditation and philosophy.
“The Secret Kingdom – Nek Chand, A Changing India, and a Hidden World of Art” (Candlewick Press) by Barb Rosenstock as illustrated by Claire A. Nivola tells the story of a famous folk artist who built a rock garden out of recycled materials and the villagers who saved it from destruction by government authorities. This inspiring tale illuminates the power of art for children.
“After Projects the Resound” (Black Radish) by Kimberly Alidio gives voice to a queer female Filipino poetic voice that finds language as a fragmented archive of crystalized vision.
Sujata Massey, known for her popular Japanese female detective series embarks on a new series and new character, a female lawyer-sleuth in 1920’s Bombay. The character was inspired by some of India’s earliest lawyers. “The Widows of Malabar Hill” (Soho Press, Inc.) comes out Jan., 2018.
In “Irradiated Cities” (Les Figues Press), Mariko Mori goes to cities across Japan devastated by war and disaster and listens to what people have to say. From it she weaves an album, essays of witness and photos of fragments from each place.
“Book Uncle And Me” (Groundwood Books) by Uma Krishaswami is a heatwarming story of community activism, friendship and the love of books. When her retired teacher uncle sets up a free-lending library on the street only to be shut down by the mayor, a little girl finds she must organize her neighbors to take action. A book for young adults who enjoy reading.
“Saints And Misfits” (Simon & Schuster) is a young adult novel by S.K. Ali that tells the story of a Muslim high school girl who doesn’t fit in with her new family or at school until the possibility of love appears.
“Kurosawa’s Rashomon – a Vanished City, A Lost Brother And The Voice Inside His Iconic Films” (Pegasus) by Paul Anderer offers not only a look at the spiritual, philosophical and aesthetic evolution of this cinematic genius but a thoughtful analysis of his most seminal and influential film.
Kate DiCamillo’s story of hope entitled “La La La” (Candlewick) is a children’s picture book buoyed by the dazzling art of illustrator Jaime Kim as the tale of a lonely girl singing to herself in the outdoors comes alive.
Poet Annie Kim’s “Into The Cyclorama” (Southern Indiana Review Press) won the Michael Waters Poetry Prize. In it she answers eloquently questions like “What art can we make out of violence?” or “What shape from loss?” And her poems show how the personal is refracted through the historical.
“A Rising Man” (Pegasus) by Abir Mukherjee is a historical crime novel set in the social and political tinderbox of 1919 Calcutta. When a colonial senior official is found dead with a note warning the British to leave India, a former Scotland Yard detective and a local Indian investigator must solve the crime before all hell breaks loose.
Literary alchemist Paul Yoon is back with a luminous collection of linked short stories entitled “The Mountain” (Simon & Schuster). Through the Hudson Valley to the Russian Far East, the characters are connected by traumatic pasts, newly vagrant lives and a quest for solace.
Shaena Yang Ryan’s “Green Island” (Vintage) is a novel about Taiwan and how one family is rocked when the Chinese Nationalists take away a father who speaks out against the government. This book which just picked up an American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation is out in a new paperback edition.
Beth Yap is an Australia-based prose writer who grew up in Malaysia. “The Crocodile Fury” (Vagabond) follows the fortunes of three generations of a family who grew up working at a convent school in a Southeast Asian city and the stories they tell. “The Red Pearl And Other Stories” (Vagabond) is Yap’s first collection of short stories that follow misfits and outsiders as they travel to emotional sites just beyond their physical locations of Kuala Lumpur, Paris and Sydney.
“The Vietnam War – An Intimate History” (Knopf) by Geoffrey C. Ward and Ken Burns is based on the PBS film series by Burns and Lynn Novick. This richly illustrated history of a war told from all sides is written by script writer/historian Geoffrey C. Ward. This is a fresh account of a war that reunited Vietnam and divided the U.S. told through the yes of those who witnessed it, civilians and soldiers alike.
“The Boy In The Earth” (Soho) by Fuminori Nakamura. Translated by Allison Markin Powell. A darkly melancholic tale that evokes Scorsese’s “Taxi Driver” and Camus’ “The Fall”. Set in Tokyo, this Akutagawa Prize-winning novel offers glimpses into the lives of ordinary people.
“Look Up!” (Holiday House) by Jung Jin-Ho is a delightful children’s picture book that makes us see a new perspective in life. A girl in a wheelchair looks down from her balcony and asks passersby to “Look up!”
“The Mission Chinese Food Cookbook” (Ecco) by Danny Bowien and Chris Ying. How does a Korean adoptee raised in Oklahoma end up in San Francisco’s Mission District with an award-winning Chinese restaurant while along the way winning the Pesto World Championship in Genoa and nabbing The James Beard Foundation “Rising Star Chef of the Year” award? Read this book and you’ll find out and also learn some new recipes.
Remember when you were a kid and there were certain foods you wouldn’t eat? “No Kim Chi For Me!” (Holiday House) by Aram Kim tackles this dilemma in a delightful way with charming art work to draw you in.
“The Way To Bea” (Little Brown) by Kat Yeh looks at the perennial case of the outsider. A girl in middle school just doesn’t fit in. She expresses her emotions in haiku poems written in invisible ink. But surprises occur when someone writes back.
The Wing in partnership with Manhattan Tenement Museum encourages community members to share their own experiences in “Your Story, Our Story”, a digital story-telling exhibit. The focus for 2017 is to gather stories from civic life. Add your story today by visiting the website. For details, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Some prominent Asian American nominated for the 2017 Mayor’s Arts awards include journalist and newspaper editor Assunta Ng under the “Cultural Ambassador – Individual” category and artist/entrepreneur Sue Lee under the “Arts & Innovation” category. Congratulations to Assunta Ng who won the award in her category.
Friends of Asian Art Association is an all-volunteer organization that connects its members and the community to educations, cultural and social events tied to Asia and its diverse art forms and culture. Enjoy year-round activities and meet new friends who share similar interests by becoming a member. All are welcome to the activities but members get special discounts and perks. Some upcoming program events include the following – September 27 brings “Explore India” with Shelly Krishnamurty, Ram Prasad and Nona Dhawan. On Sunday from 2 – 4pm at the Mountaineers Center in Magnuson Park. October 19 from 1 – 3pm, Barry Broman will talk about “Up the Chindwin River to Nagaland” at the Phinney Center. Go to FriendsOfAsianArt.org or call (206) 522-5438 for details on all these events.
Asian Counseling And Referral Service’s (ACRS) Annual Benefit Gala entitled “A Culinary Journey – Eat-Give-Hope” takes place on Sat., Oct. 7, 2017 at 5:30pm. An evening of inspiring stories and culinary delights custom designed by local Asian American/Pacific Islander chefs Rachel Yang (Joule/Revel/Trove/Revelry), Jinho Han (Seven Beef) and David Kong (Perche No). RSVP by Monday, September 25, 2017. Purchase tickets at www.acrs.org/gala. At The Westin Bellevue at 600 Bellevue Way NE. For details, go to events@acrs,org or call 206-695-7551.
Saint Martin’s Gala International 2017 takes place on Sat., Nov. 4, 2017 at Saint Martin’s University in Lacy, WA. A black-tie gourment affair with a live auction benefiting student scholarships. This year’s theme is China and will feature award-winning chef Ming Tsai. Reserve your table by calling 360-438-4366 or by going to www.stmartin.edu/Ming.
Calling all foodies! The Wing needs your help with our new exhibit, “What’s In Your Cup?-Community Brewed Culture”. This exhibit will showcase the history behind Asian Pacific American beverages and we want you to be part of it. For the chance to be featured in our exhibit, please submit a high resolution JPEG (720p or 1080p) of you enjoying your favorite APA beverage, as well as a sentence or two on why you love that drink to email@example.com. You can share this info. With us through email, dropbox, or the hashtag #WhatsInYourCup!
Go to 4Culture.org to find out about funding and support for cultural work in King County.
Shunpike issues a call for a new Artists-in-Residence program on a Seattle-area corporate campus in an on-site art studio in the South Lake Union neighborhood. There will be a total of 4 residencies available in three-month increments staring Nov. 1, 2017. For more details, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Applications for Jack Straw Writers Program, Artist Support Program and New Media Gallery Program are now available. Go to www.jackstraw.org/programs/asp/2018_apps.shtml or email email@example.com for details.
The Office of Arts & Culture for the City of Seattle is expanding the Ethnic Artist Roster, a pre-qualified list of artists. Artists selected will also be featured in an online data base on Northwest artists of color. Deadline is Oct. 17, 2017 at 11pm. There is a workshop to help you learn how to apply on Mon., Sept. 18, 2017 at 6pm at The Black Zone at 2301 S. Jackson #203. For information, call 206-684-0182 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.