Poems and drawings look at marginalization of Asians in North America

March 27, 2021

By Vancouver Sun |

Curator Godfre Leung was setting up an exhibit at a small East Vancouver bookshop-gallery when it “touched the present unexpectedly in the last week.”

He was preparing poems and drawings by Asian women in North America about how they’re excluded from parts of society, feelings magnified by the shooting of six Asian women in Atlanta.

“There’s always a reluctance in both the U.S. and Canada to acknowledge racism as racism, as opposed to an isolated event or the actions of one single person,” said Leung.

The exhibit, “Guesthood and Alienhood,” is about “this idea that we are uninvited guests, that we take up space on this continent with respect to the first peoples, but at the same time, and even more acutely since COVID, there’s the sense that Asian immigrants are perpetual aliens.”

It’s mostly a collection of small books of poetry and drawings trying to connect the two existences.

Said gallery director Ho Tam: “This is a very quiet work that speaks volumes.”

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