Visual Arts

Space City with AIA Seattle present a talk by New York-based architect Mimi Hoang. Hoang is a founding principal of nArchitects and Adjunct assistant Professor at Columbia University. The firm is known for designing for a variety of experiences within a systematic approach – from buildings & pavilions to interiors across cultural, residential and commercial use. nArchitects have won numerous awards and are currently designing four kiosks for Seattle’s new waterfront. Thurs., Nov. 3, 2016 at 6:30pm  at Seattle Central Library downtown in the Microsoft Auditorium. For tickets and details, go to Hoang will also remain in town to serve on a jury for this year’s AIA Seattle 2016 Honor Awards on Mon., Nov. 7 at Benaroya Hall.

“(in) Visible” is the title of a group show up until Nov. 17, 2016 that features artists from Asian Counseling and Referral Services (ACRS). This show offers glimpses into complicated intersections of ethnicity, perceived identities and invisible disabilities.  M. Rosetta Hunter Art Gallery located at Seattle Central Community College across from the cafeteria in the plaza. Hours are M – F from 9am – 3:30pm and Evenings from 5 – 7pm on Tues. & Wed. 1701 Broadway. 206-934-4379.

Beloved Seattle community artist/educator Frank Fujii who recently passed away will be remembered in a celebration of his life on Nov. 12 at 1pm at Town Hall Seattle.1119 Eighth Ave. above downtown Seattle.

“Minidoka: Artist As Witness” is a group show that details the incarceration of Japanese Americans along the West Coast on view until Jan. 15, 2017. From 1942 – 45 more than 13,000 evacuees were incarcerated at Minidoka War Relocation Center in South Central Idaho. This show at the Boise Art Museum features significant works by five artists with personal or family history at Minidoka, now a National Historic Site. In this show are works by Takuichi Fujii, Kenjiro Nomura and Roger Shimomura. Sculptor/installation artist Wendy Murayama has a body of work including photos and found objects and an installation of 10 sculptures made from paper ID tags worn by internees. Photographer Teresa Tamura’s photo series from her book, “Minidoka: An American Concentration Camp” are also on view. Wendy Murayama will give a talk on her work on Nov. 9 at 6pm in the Boise State University Special Events Center located at 1800 University Drive. The Boise Art Museum is closed on Mondays. Located at 670 Julia Davis Dr. in Boise, Idaho. 208-345-8330.

Junko Yamamoto has work in a group show entitled “Select 2016 Marathon Artists: Going The Distance” which is a sneak peek at work by artists who will participate in CoCA’s annual “CoCA New Wave Ball Art Marathon & auction set for Nov. 10 – 12, 2016.” CoCA’s new gallery space is in the Tashiro Kaplan Building in Pioneer Square at 114 Third Ave. S.  The show on view through Oct. The benefit auction in Nov. takes place in the Summit Building at 420 E. Pike. If you can volunteer for this event, email [email protected].

The work of Lee Chul Soo is included in a group show entitled “Pick Your Poison – Politics in Print” on view Nov. 3 – 26 at Davidson Galleries. 313 Occidental Ave. S. 206-624-7684 or go to

The work of Yuriko Yamaguchi is included in a group show entitled “IDENTITY – Insight: Unfolding the Visual Narrative” on view through Dec. 23, 2016. Prographica/ KDR Gallery. 313 Occidental Ave. S. in Seattle’s Pioneer Square. 206-999-0849 or go to

Ongoing shows at Jack Straw Cultural Center’s lobby and hallway include the following – “Etsuko Ichikawa: Glass Pyrographs” which includes a 14 foot long scroll and videos of her making the work and “Dean Wong: New Street Photography” which includes new work taken in Chinatowns along the West Coast and in his recent book on Chin Music Press. 4261 Roosevelt Way NE.

Minh Nguyen  is an organizer of events and exhibitions who is interested in media studies, the role of design and urban planning in the creation of equitable spaces , and collective protest. She is official “Artist in Residence” for fall at Town Hall Seattle. Here is her statement – “I’m looking forward to using Town Hall’s upcoming events, specifically on digital communications and internet law, as a starting point to engage with the community on these issues. I’m excited to develop projects that synthesize art and civic engagement.”

The 2016 Museum of Northwest Art 2016 MoNA Luminaries Legacy Artist & Award Recipients were recently announced at a ceremony in Seattle. Each category of award is named in honor of a Northwest artist who has contributed to the region. Ceramic artist Patti Warashina is named for the award given to the  “Emerging Artists” category.  Congratulations to Saya Moriyasu who won the Alfredo Arreguin Award for Mid-Career Artists. She is represented by G. Gibson Gallery. Winners receive $1,000 award and inclusion in a group show at the museum located in La Connor, WA.

“River Run” by sculptor June Sekiguchi was a yearlong progressively cumulative installation responding to sites around Puget Sound from Bainbridge, Ellensberg, Bellingham, Seattle and in its most expansive iteration culminating at Edmonds. This final Edmonds segment is on view now through Dec. 8, 2016. At Edmonds Community College Art Gallery. The gallery is on the third floor of Lynnwood Hall. Regular hours are M – Th. From 7:30am – 9pm, Fridays from 7:30am – 2pm and weekends from 1 – 5pm. 2000 – 68th Ave. W. in Lynnwood, WA. 425-640-1459.

Aldo Chan is well known for his graphic design skills having worked for the International Examiner, Wing Luke Asian Museum and the Seattle Times. But how many of you know him for his creative ability in the field of ceramics? Just in time for Christmas, come to a “Home Art Sale” featuring Aldo’s ceramics and affordable paintings, drawings, prints & greeting cards by his friends Ann Daley Ryherd, Kathy Roseth and Adama Kay. Sat., Nov. 5, 2016 from 10am – 6pm. Refreshments provided. Cash/checks preferred. Ditch the mall, forget online shopping and get that something special, personal and handmade for your loved ones in an intimate, friendly environment. 2306 – N. 46th St. in Seattle.

“The Eclectic Collection” is a group show of artwork by former artist-in-residents at the James & Janie Washington Foundation. The home of the late, great Northwest sculptor & painter James Washington has been turned into an artist-in-residence residency for Northwest artists to live at and create work. This group show includes work by MalPina Chan,  Romson Bustillo, June Sekiguchi and many others. The show is on view at the Anne Focke Gallery through Oct. 28. Opening reception on Oct. 20 from 4 – 6pm. Regular hours are M – F  from 7am – 6pm. 600 Fourth Ave. downtown in the Seattle City Hall Lobby.

“Cultural Perspectives, Part III” is a group show that looks at recent acquisitions to the Seattle Public Utilities Portable Collection on view through Dec. 28, 2016 at the Seattle Municipal Tower Gallery located on Level 3 Concourse of the building located at 700 Fifth Ave.  Hours are M-F from 7am – 7pm. 206-684-7132.

The work of Leslie Wu and June Sekiguchi is included in a group show entitled “Revering Nature” at the Koch Gallery at Vashon Center for the Arts as curated by Greg Robinson, Director of BIMA. Opening reception is Nov. 4 from 4 – 6pm. Remains on view through Nov. 26. Hours are M-F from 10am – 5pm and Sat. from 12 – 5pm. 19600 Vashon Highway Southwest on Vashon Island. 206-463-5131.

“Art Interruptions” is an annual temporary art program created by the City of Seattle Office of Arts & Culture with the Seattle Department of Transportation. Temporary art installations will offer ephemeral moments of surprise and reflection in the Rainier Valley East-West Neighborhood Greenway including New Holly, Othello, Brighton, Lakewood and Seward Park. You will find these temporary art installations up through Jan. 2, 2017. Vikram Madan and Junko Yamamoto are some of the artists who have work in this project.

Cheryl Leo Gwin is a local multi-media artist with a new show of digital collages in “Farewell” on view at Sammamish City Hall Common s Gallery on view through Jan. 2017. Opening reception is Nov. 6 from 6:30 – 830pm. 801 – 228th Ave. SE in Sammamish.

“We Are a Crowd of Others” is an installation by Gail Grinnell, Samuel Wildman and Eric Johnson on view through November,  2016. Besides the installation, there will be a series of performances, readings, and projects nestled in the site  specific space. This will be a forum for people to engage with this reality: A person’s identity often exceeds the limitations of their body, manifesting in words and actions. Poet Jane Wong addresses “The Poetics of Haunting” on Nov. 8 at 7pm.  “Sonic Decoy/Rising Tone” is an all-day program led by Emory Liu & special guests. Mad Art Studio at 325 Westlake Ave. N. #101. Go to for details.

The Henry Art Gallery located on the campus of the University of Washington joins MOTHRA and Chris E. Vargas in presenting the group show “TRANS HISTORY in 99 Objects” through June 4, 2017. This show gathers archival materials and works by contemporary artists that narrate an expansive and critical history of transgender communities. Related activities include the following –At the gallery, there will be a Project 42 performance on Nov. 13 at 12:30pm with Seattle dancer/choreographer  Anna Lizette Connor that memorializes transgender lives cut short by murder.

“To:Seattle/Subject: Personal” is a group show of significant works of contemporary art acquired by The Board of Trustees between 2009 and 2016 during the directorship of Jo-Anne Birnie-Danzke who curated the exhibition. It emphasizes the inclusion of work into the collection of local artists in the community. Includes work by DK Pan, Degenerate Art Ensemble, Liu Ping, Pan Gongkai and Susie J. Lee.  “Seeing Art: A Multidisciplinary Critical Discourse on Twenty-First Century Art Practice” is a series of discussions on some of the issues brought up in the exhibition on a global, national and local level and the efforts on art practice.  Remaining events take place on Nov. 19 from 2 – 3:30pm and Sat., Dec. 10 from 3 – 4:30pm. 704 Terry Ave. 206-622-9250.

The art collective known as SOIL has the following group shows. The group show “From Domesticity” features work by Tony Kim and opens Nov. 3 and remains on view until Dec. 31, 2016. Megumi Shauna Arai has work in a large group show curated by Serrah Russell and Rafael Soldi on view from Nov. 3 – Nov. 26, 2016. 112 Third Ave. S. 206-264-8061 or go to

The work of artists Ron Ho,  Cheryll Leo-Gwin, Taiji Miyasaka & David Drake  and Midori Saito is included in the BAM Biennial 2016 entitled “Metal Morphosis” on view through Feb. 5, 2017.  The Northwest Designer Craftsmen also present a “Workshop with Ron Ho” on the weekend of Nov. 5 & 6 from 10am – 4pm. $175 for members and $200 for non-members.510 Bellevue Way NE. 425-519-0770 or go to for details.

“INK PLAY: Celebrating the World of Sumi” is a group show presenting the work of the Puget sound Sumi Artists (PSSA) at Hanforth Gallery located in Tacoma’s Public Library. On view  from Oct. 4 – Nov.  12.  1102 Tacoma Ave. S. in Tacoma. Go to for details.

“Handmade in Camp – What We couldn’t Carry”  is a group show that displays over 60 items including furniture, jewelry, tools, paintings, needlework, scrapbooks, games, toys and quilts – all handcrafted items made by Japanese Americans during their WWII incarceration. On view through Nov. 6, 2016.The museum says that most are family heirlooms borrowed from area households and have never been seen in public. Accompanied by quotes from local families. White River Valley Museum in Auburn. For details call 253-288-7433 or go to

“Witness To Wartime: Takuichi Fujii” is an exhibition devoted to the career of this Seattle artist (1891-1964). The bulk of the collection consists of almost 250 drawings depicting the forced incarceration of Japanese Americans on the West Coast. The artist’s illustrated diary depicts in detail the history of internment from start to finish and is augmented by paintings, watercolors and sculpture. After the war, Fujii relocated to Chicago where he continued to work in a more abstract expressionistic manner. Selections from this exhibition are featured in the current Boise Art Museum exhibition entitled “Minidoka: Artist As Witness.” The exhibition is curated by Northwest art historian Barbara Johns who also wrote the catalog which will be published by UW Press in 2017. For booking this exhibition, email or call Laura Sumser, Exhibition Manager at [email protected] or 626-577-004

Gibson Gallery in Pioneer Square specializes in photography and art. They represent such artists as Saya Moriyasu, Diem Chua, Elizabeth Jameson and Thuy-Van Wu. Beginning in November, they will move to the lower Queen Anne neighborhood in the same building as On The Boards. Their new address will be 104 W. Roy St.  The first new exhibit in the new space will be “Winter Gymnastics”, a group exhibit of gallery artists set for Nov. 16 – Dec. 30, 2016.

“Monkey Way” is the title of a catchy multi-media installation by Seattle artist Saya Moriyasu. It’s in the walkway window just past Starbuck’s as you transition from Chinatown/ID to the street across that leads to the trains that take commuters to Everett and Tacoma. In a lot of ways, this transition between cultures/places parallel’s the artist’s work as well. Her statement reads, “The current political situation is awkward in that it seeps into the work via monkeys and lots of shelves that are not functional. This moment of instability in US politics leads to inspirations from moments in history in France and China. Putting all these elements all together is a visual mash-up that comes from my life in a family mixed both in class and culture.” History, culture and identity mixed with whimsy comes from this display and grabs the attention of passersby. Ongoing. Moriyasu is also in a group show entitled “Peep Show” on the 2nd floor at The Alice at 6007 – 12th Ave. S. through August 13. For information on the artist, go to Saya for information about the work, go to

Local paper-cut artist Lauren Iida has a busy schedule of shows throughout the area. Her work can always be seen at ArtXchange Gallery in Seattle’s Pioneer Square. In addition, more shows include the following. A new retail/gallery space in Ballard called Venue carries a variety of her new cut paper work.  5408 22nd Ave. NW. [email protected] or call 206-789-3335. Her first public art project will be paper cutaways laser cut from metal and hung as banners along Aurora between 175th and 205th   will be installed in August. Sponsored by the city of Shoreline.  Her first “sculptural” paper cutaway will be on display starting Fri., August 4 at Sculpture Northwest in Bellingham. 11 feet long, it features images of diving Kamikaze planes along with framed work and found objects pertaining to her family’s incarceration during WWII in Japanese American internment camps. She has a new position as Gallery Director at Make Shift Art Space in Bellingham. She recently collaborated with Cambodian American designer Silong Chuun at Red Scarf Revolution in Tacoma to design t-shirts with her paper  cutaway designs which are available online. Go to for full details. She is also always open to commissions. She has done custom cutaways for people from their special photos or a favorite poem etc. For details on commissions, go to

Kobo at Higo hosts the following. Opening Nov. 12 and remaining on view until Dec. 30, 2016 is their always  popular annual “Simple Cup Invitational Show.” Go down early and sign up if you want to have a chance to purchase a cup. 604 S. Jackson St. in Seattle. 206-381-3000 or go to

The Gunnar Nordstrom Gallery in Bellevue has the following. “Geometric Abstracts from Beijing” is the title of a show of works by Chinese artist Chen Jin opening on Oct. 12 and closing Nov. 5, 2016. Opening Nov. 9 and closing Dec. 10, 2016 are works on silk by Keiichi Nakamura. 800 Bellevue Way NE #111. 425-827-2822 or go to for details.

The Portland Japanese Garden recently reopened after a six-month closure for construction on the Garden’s Cultural Crossing expansion project. More construction is coming to expand the facilities with new features such as classrooms, galleries, a café and seven garden spaces with public water features and a bonsai terrace. Design is supervised by internationally know architect Kengo Kuma. Improvements should be completed by Spring, 2017.  Extended until Nov. 6, 2016 is the current outside exhibition entitled “Bending Nature – Four Bamboo Artists In The Garden” which includes the work of Jiro Yonezawa, Shigeo Kawashima, Charissa Brock and Anne Crumpacker. Go to for full details.

The A6 Studio & Gallery’s major exhibit for 2016 is entitled “Opening Japan: Three Centuries of Japanese Prints” which features more than two dozen Japanese woodblock prints covers a wide range of topics and artists from the 17th, 18th and 19th century. Activities connected to the show include the following.    Art historian Lorna Cahall traces the influence of Japanese prints on the Impressionists and Post-Impressionists on Nov. 1 at the Bend Downtown Library. Portland State University’s theater department provides an introduction to kabuki thatre and perfroms select scenes from “The 47 Loyal Samurai” at Tower Theatre on Nov. 13. On view  through Nov.  20,  2016. A6 is a non-profit studio and gallery in Bend, Oregon  centered on printmaking and book arts. Go to for complete details.

Art Gallery of Greater Victoria has the following upcoming shows. “Millennia – Astonishing Asian Art Throughout the Ages” is a new group show that showcases one of the best collections of Asian art in Canada taken from the gallery collection and remains on view through March 31, 2017.   1040 Moss St. in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. Call 1-250-384-4171.

The Audain Art Museum in Whistler, Canada has “From Geisha to Diva: The Kimono of Ichimaru” which showcases the kimono and personal objects of one of Japan’s most famous geisha. Opens Oct. 22 and remains on view through Jan. 9, 2017. 4350 Blackcomb Way. 604-962-0413 or go to

A tattered folded painting of five Buddhas found in an old chest in a Korean antique shop by an American collector has become a rare re-found treasure. When Robert Mattielli bought the painting for ten dollars and brought it back with him to Portland. And when he bequeathed it to Portland Art Museum. He had no idea of its origins. Visiting scholars from the Korean National Research Institute for Cultural Heritage verified it had been stolen from the famous zen temple, Songgwangsa. Now, before it is returned, visitors to the museum can see this special painting accompanied by a special informative symposium which takes place on Dec. 3, 2016 from 1 – 4pm. Portland Art Museum. 1219 SW Park Ave. 503-226-2811 or go to

New and recent shows /activities at the Wing include the following – “Everything Has Been Material For Scissors To Shape”  is a new group exhibition on textiles and how they move through history and myth, commodity culture and art, linking women’s hands and machines to Asian American identities.” It features the work of Surabhi Ghosh, Stephanie Syjuco and Aram Han Sifuentes. This show is on display through April 16, 2017.   Opening Sat., August 20 is “Stars Above: Wrapped in Lullabies”. Opening March 3 from 6 – 8pm is “Seeds of Change, Roots of Power: The Danny Woo Community Garden”, an exhibit that celebrates this neighborhood resource which preserves culture, tradition and identity.    Nov. 3 from 6 – 8pm is the opening reception for a new show entitled “We Are the Ocean: An Indigenous Response to Climate Change”. Free.   Another exhibition opening member reception takes place on Thurs., Dec. 8 from 6 – 8pm for “Who’s Got Game? Asian Pacific Americans in Sports” set for Dec. 8 from 6 – 8pm.  This event includes speakers, games and refreshments. RSVP online.  Tatau/Tattoo: Embodying Resistance. Explores the practices and cultural significance of tattoos, highlighting the unique perspectives of the South Pacific communities in the Pacific Northwest.   “Khmer American: Naga Sheds Its Skin”. War has had a huge impact on Khmer culture and identity. Despite these challenges, the community continues to shape the US and Cambodia.  “Tales of Tails: Animals in Children’s Books  is a recent show to open at the museum.    “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.    FAMILY FUN DAY takes place on Sat. Nov. 19 from 10am – 5pm. Free admission all day with family fun activities like story time, face painting and special appearances by local heroes.   Toddler Story Time has the following events which are all free. On Nov. 3 at 11am hear the story of a child and her grandpa in “Joone.” Thurs., Dec. 1 at 11am, hear the story of a bear looking for a new home in “Bear: A Book of Animal Habitats” with a fun art activity to follow.   The Wing wishes happy holidays to its members with a Dec. 3 “Holiday Member Appreciation Day: Asian American Santa” which takes place from 12:30 – 3:30pm in the member lounge. Bring your kids and enjoy special discounts in the Marketplace. Every gift membership purchased includes a limited edition Year of the Rooster glass.     On  Sat. ,Dec. 10 from 10:30am – 12:30pm, join fashion designer Malia Peoples for a sewing workshop in which you can make your very own Kinchaku (Japanese drawstring pouch). Great for kids ages 8+ accompanied by an adult. Free if you bring your own fabric. If not, $5 for  materials. (Does not include access to the Museum galleries).   “SHOP-O-RAMA” is when you get the best deals at the museum gift store. Every Sat., from  Nov. 19 – Dec. 17, enjoy discounts and local artist pop-up shops. Visit for details.   The Museum is located at 719  South King St. (206) 623-5124 or  visit 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.

“Voices of Nisei Veterans – Permanent Exhibition and Collections”  is composed of rare collections preserved by the Nisei Veterans Committee and tells the story of Japanese American veterans before, during and after WW II. Access is by pre-arranged tour only. For reservations or information, email [email protected] or [email protected]. Jointly sponsored by the NVC Memorial Hall and The Wing. 1212 South King St.

“Pacific Voices” is an ongoing exhibit that celebrates the language, teachings, art, and cultural ceremonies of seventeen cultures from the Pacific Rim. Burke Museum at the University of Washington. 17th Ave. NE & E 45th  Streets. (206) 543-5590 or try

Original sumi paintings and prints by Japanese modern master Toko Shinoda now in her 90’s and still working will be shown locally at Azuma Gallery. The show opens Nov. 3 and remains on view until Nov. 30, 2016. 530 First Ave. S. in Seattle. 206-622-5599 or go to

New Zealand’s largest art show “World of Wearable Art” (tm ) makes its North American debut at EMP Museum in Seattle. A spectacular fusion of fasion and art, the exhibition showcases 32 award-winning garments from the annual competition in Wellington.  One of the highlights is ‘Born to Die”, a dress made completely of cable ties woven into a sculptural “vertebrae” to look like a fish skeleton, by design student, Guo Xia Tong from China. On view through Jan. 2,  2017. 325 – 5th Ave. N.  

Chiyo Ishikawa, Seattle Art Museum’s Deputy Director of Art and Curator of European Painting and Sculpture gives a “First Friday Lecture” on Nov. 4 at 11am. She will discuss the show on Yves Saint Laurent. Part of the activities connected to Seattle Art Museum’s current show “Yves Saint Laurent: The Perfection of Style now on view through Jan. 8, 2017.     The SAM Families “Free First Saturday”  event for Nov. 5 at 11am is “Celebrating Diwali” in which you can celebrate the Indian festival of lights by making your own votive candle holder, see a fashion show and listen to traditional Indian music. “Conversations with Curators” is a popular series designed for SAM members. It starts up again with the following – All talks start at 7pm in the auditorium with a Happy Hour preceding the event at 6pm. Japanese and Korean Art Curator Xiaojin Wu gives a talk on Nov. 16. Chinese Art Curator Ping Fong speaks on Dec. 14. Curator of African and Oceanic Art, Pam McClusky talks on Jan. 18.       Next year will see a show by Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama spanning over five decades. “Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors” will focus on her original series done in 1965 in which she displayed a vast expanse of red-spotted, white tubers in a room lined with mirrors, creating a jarring illusion of infinite space and move on throughout her whole career developing this concept. Opens Sept. 29, 2017 and remains on view through Sept. 10, 2017. The exhibit comes from the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington D.C. where it will be exhibited Feb. 23 – May 14, 2017. Other dates for this touring exhibit TBA.  Seattle Art Museum downtown at 1300 First Ave. 206-654-3100.

Currently on view at Seattle Asian Art Museum in Volunteer Park – “Awakened Ones: Buddhas of Asia” comes from the museum’s own collection and features 20 sculptures and paintings of Buddhas from across Asia that span nearly 13 centuries.      On view through Feb. 26, 2017 is “Terratopia: The Chinese Landscape in Painting and Film.” The importance of landscape is a key feature of Chinese art and this show gives it a new wrinkle by comparing Chinese landscape paintings from the collection with the sounds and images of artist and cinematographer Yang Fudong taken from his five-part film entitled “Seven Intellectuals in a Bamboo Forest (2003-7). The film experiments with ideas about what nature holds for people in the modern world by reimagining ancient history’s seven philosophers as seven successful youths who are disenchanted with the banality of daily urban life. Filmed in the famed Yellow mountains of eastern China, a place that inspired poetry and literature for centuries as well as a major school of landscape art. Chinese art curator Foong Ping says, “It’s a thinking person’s show…You  have to look at something and ask ‘Why is it there? Why did you choose this one?’ and there will be an answer. It’s a puzzle.”. Immersed in both the audio and visual elements of the film, viewers may very well begin to see the Chinese landscapes on the wall in a new light. In a related activity, SAM Families “Free First Saturday” on Dec. 3 from 11am – 2pm will have families tour the show and then inspired by traditional Chinese paintings and Northwest landscapes, create their own landscape to take home.    Tabaimo is a Japanese artist who currently has her first solo show of video installations at San Jose Museum of Modern Art. She will curate a show of her existing and new works as well as works from SAM’s collection that she has selected for their close connections with her own work entitled “Tabaimo: Utsutsushi Utsushi.” Her immersive and thought-provoking installations combine hand-drawn traditional Japanese wood block prints with digital manipulations. This is the first major exhibition curated by the artist and it is organized around the concept of “utsushi” which refers to the emulation of a master artist’s work as a way to understand their technique. Opens Nov. 11, 2016 and remains on view through Feb. 26, 2017.  On the opening night of the exhibit, the artist Tabaimo will talk about her work with SAM Curator Xiaojin Wu at 7pm. Also Wu will  give a free talk again about Tabaimo’s work at a “First Friday Lecture” on Dec. 2 at 11am. The Gardner Center’s “Saturday University” series this time centers around the theme of tea. All talks start at 9:30am in the auditorium.  On Nov. 5, Piya Chatterjee from UC Riverside talks about “Consuming Empires, Consuming Desires: Images of Tea Times and Tea Labors. On Nov. 12, Morgan Pitelka from the University of North Carolina talks about “The Power and Pleasure of Tea Bowls in Japan.”  On Nov. 19, Erika Rappaport from UC, Santa Barbara talks about how “Tea Revives the World: Advertising a Global Commodity during the Great Depression.”        

The Gardner Center’s “Asia Talks” series presents Professors Clark Sorenson and Andrea Arai from UW who speak about “Spaces In, Between and Beyond Korean and Japan on Dec. 1 at 7pm in the auditorium.    Please note that when the museum closes for extended renovation, Gardner Center’s Winter 2017 “Saturday University” series activities will continue at the alternative site of Seattle University at Pigott Hall and other places on the campus. Seattle Asian Art Museum is at 1400 Prospect St. in Volunteer Park. 206-442-8480 or go to or [email protected].

The works of Patti Warashina and her late husband Robert Sperry and Lead Pencil Studio (Annie Han & Daniel Mihalyo) are included in a unique group show curated by Vicki Halper  entitled “Matched Makers-Northwest Artist Couples” on view through Jan. 1, 2017. Museum of Northwest Art at  121 South First St. in La Connor, WA.

Seattle artist Carina del Rosario brought her “Passport Office” art installation to Burien’s Arts Aglow Festival on September 10, 2016. “Every time I have to fill out a form, I bristle at the boxes I have to squeeze myself into. I know a lot of people who feel that way too.” Instead the artist creates new passports  that lets people fill out with what they want to say about themselves and the meaningful things in their lives. The artist wants to provoke deeper questions like “why do we have categories like race, gender and immigration status anyway?” A portion of this series will be featured in the exhibition “Liberty Denied” at the Museum of Culture and the Environment” in Ellensburg  through Dec. 10, 2016. For details, go to [email protected].

The Seattle Asian Art Museum known for its classic Art Deco design built in 1933 will receive a major overhaul and renovation. The museum will close in the spring of 2017. The museum seeks input from the community in a series of meetings about what people envision for the Asian Art Museum of tomorrow. Go to or email SAM at [email protected] for more information about upcoming community forums about the future of SAAM. Some goals include expanding educational and programming spaces, protecting the collection, restoring a historic icon, enhancing the museum’s connection with Volunteer Park and adding new exhibition space.  Coming up are community meetings on Nov. 19, 2016 and Dec. 10, 2016 both at 1pm at Seattle Asian Art Museum at 1400 E. Prospect St. in Volunteer Park. Come come and bring your imput and suggestions.


Comparing his own journey from China to Canada, the Yangtze River to the Frazier River, with that of the salmon migration, Canadian multi-media artist Gu Xiong has an installation entitled “A River of Migration”.  Xiong says,  “When the salmon returns, the river flows red.  A spiritual river.  A river of migration.” On view through  Nov. 28, 2016.  San Juan Islands Museum  of Art on 540 Spring St. in Friday Harbor. 360-370-5050 or go to

“Eyes Water  Fire” is a show of new work by Tomoyo Ihaya. As a nomad, the artist has a  sensitivity  to people forced to migrate because of social political situation. The work in this show reflects Ihaya’s emotional and visual diatribe against “. . . the suffering of people (because of) wars, suppression, abuse of human rights and loss of homelands and dignity.” Includes mixed media installations, mixed media drawings and an art video. On view through  Nov. 25, 2016. Art Beatus Gallery. 108-808 Nelson St. in Vancouver, BC. 604-688-2633 or go to

If you missed the “Juxtapoz x Superflat” group exhibition curated by Takashi Murakami and Evan Pricco, Editor of Juxtapoz Art & Culture Magazine that showed for a few days at Pivot Art + Culture during the Seattle Art Fair, you now have a second chance. It will be on view Nov. 5 until Feb. 5, 2017 here in Vancouver. The emphasis is on art outside the mainstream dipping into subcultures of contemporary design, anime and manga. Includes work by Chiho Aoshima, Toilet Paper Magazine, Kim Jung Gi, Lucy Sparrow, Takashi Murakami and many others. Vancouver Art Gallery is at 750 Hornby St. in Vancouver BC, Canada. 604-662-4722 or go to

“Taiken – Japanese Canadians Since 1877”, photography and artifacts that chronicle the hardships of pioneers to the struggles of the war years to  the Nikkei community today. Nikkei National Museum at 6688 Southoaks Cres.  In Burnaby B.C.,  Canada. 604-777-7000 or go to

The first Honolulu Biennial looks at Hawai’i not as a remote outpost but more like the crossroads of the Pacific Rim showcasing work from Japan, the Pacific Islands, Maoris and local talent. Opens March 8, 2017 and on view until May 8, 2017  at various venues. To get the whole schedule, go to

The Denver Art Museum has the following shows. “Shock Wave: Japanese Fashion Design, 1980s—90’s” gives you a look at 70 works by avant-garde designers such as Rei Kawakubo, Issey Miyake, Kenzo Takada, Junya Watanabe, Kansai Yamamoto and Yohji Yamamoto. On view now through  May 28, 2017. “Depth & Detail – Carved Bamboo from China, Japan & Korea” looks at this intricate decorative art that includes religious imagery, people, animals, birds, insects, plants and landscapes. All with a story to tell  or having symbolic meaning. On view through Jan. 15,  2017.  100 W 14th Ave. Parkway in Denver. 720-865-5000.

“Japanese Photography From Postwar To Now” features over 400 recently acquired images from the 1960’s to the 1990’s with work by Daido Moriyama, Shomei Tomatsu and Miyako Ishiuchi. On view through  March 12, 2017. San Francisco Museum  of Modern Art. Go to for details.

The Asian Art Museum, San Francisco at 200 Larkin St. 415-581-3500. In recent news, the museum is planning a massive expansion and renovation underwritten by donations from board members  which include the wife of the original founder of Yahoo! and the President of Dreyer’s Ice Cream. Thai-born Kulapat Yantrasast’s wHY architectural firm of Los Angeles will oversee the project which begins in 2017. In an effort to step up its contemporary art programming, the museum recently hired curator Karin G. Oen from Dallas where she worked as curator at the Crow Collection of Asian Art. The museum better known for historical exhibitions in the past is adding more contemporary shows as well. “28 Chinese” is a group show opening this summer with Xu Zhen, Zhang Huang and Ai We Wei organized by Miami collectors Mera and Don Rubell. The museum’s recent acquisitions of new art will debut in the fall with a group show entitled “First Look: Collecting Contemporary at the Asian” with work by Ahmed Mater, RongRong & Inri, Zhu Jinshi, Okura Jiro, Lu Shoukun and C. C. Wang.

A new exhibition entitled “Gardens, Art and Commerce in Chinese Woodblock Prints”  remains on view through Jan. 9, 2017. The show  includes forty-eight examples of woodblock prints made from the 16th century to 19th centuries on loan from the National Library of China in Beijing, the Nanjing Library, the Shanghai Museum and 14 other institutions and private collections. At the Huntington Library located at  1151 Oxford Rd. in San Marino, California. 626-405-2100.

Craft in America Center in Los Angeles has the following – The work of Taweesak Molsawat is included in a group show entitled “Politically Speaking: New American Ideals in Contemporary Jewelry” now on view through Nov. 5, 2016.   Upcoming May 20 – July 1, 2017 is “Kazuki Takizawa: Catharsis Contained.” This LA-based artist puts human emotions in the shimmering, fragile form of glass. Of his work, he says “The harmonization of the radically different, such as violence and meditation, spontaneity and meticulousness, and destruction and repair is found in the process, as well as the result of my work.” Craft in America Center is at 1120 South Robertson Blvd. #301 in Los Angels. Go to 310-659-9022 or [email protected].

Yuki Kimura’s photographs are like staged domestic environments with his own shots and those taken from other sources juxtaposed with furniture, potted plants and various objects. This marks Kimura’s first solo show in the US. Opens Dec. 8, 2016 and remains on view through Feb. 25, 2017. CCA Wattis Institute in San Francisco. 360 Kansas St. 415-355-9670.

The Japanese American National Museum has the following shows –“Tatau: Marks of Polynesia” on view until Jan. 8, 2017 showcases the art and legacy of the over 2,000 year old Samoan tattoo tradition. Opening March 12, 2017 and remaining on view until August 20, 2017 will be “New Frontiers: The Many Worlds of George Takei” which looks at the life and career of Star Trek’s Mr. Sulu. 100 North Central Ave. in Los Angeles. 1-800-461-5266 or go to

Currently on view through Dec. 4, 2016 is “Alternative Dreams: 17th Century Chinese Paintings From the Tsao Family Collection” which showcases works by many of the most famous painters of this period, including scholars, officials, and Buddhist monks. Los Angeles County  Museum of Art  (LACMA). 5905 Wilshire Blvd. 323-857-6010.

The Asia Society Museum in New York presents “No Limits: Zao Wou-Ki.” Co-organized with Colby College Museum of Art, it is the first retrospective of the work of this artist (1920-2013) in the United States. This Chinese-French artist melded eastern and western aesthetic sensibilities in his paintings to great effect and was a key figure of the post-WWII abstract expressionist movement. Zao was born in Beijing but grew up in Shanghai and Hangzhou, where he studied at the China Academy of Art. In 1948, he emigrated to Paris where he became a major name in the European art world. His work found its way into American collections in the 50’s and 60’s. He was one of the first artists to adapt the visual characteristics of Chinese art within twentieth-century oil painting idioms. The show is curated by Melissa Walt, Ankeney Weitz and Michelle Yun and is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalog. On view  through January 8, 2017. 725 Park Ave. New York City, New York. 212-327-9721 or go to

The Japanese minimalist sculptor Kishio Suga gets his first US museum exhibition at  DIA in Chelsea in New York City. Nov. 5 – April 2, 2017. Go to for details.

Opening in the Spring of 2017 will be the Whitney Biennial which was started in 1932 and is still considered one of the pre-eminent biennials in the country. This 2017 edition is co-curated by Asian Americans, Christopher Y. Lew and Mia Locks. 99 Gansevoort St. in New York City. Go to

Drawings, paintings and photos illustrate the great architectural sites and buildings of Tibet in the exhibition entitled “Monumental Lhasa: Fortress, Palace, Temple” on view now through Jan. 9, 2017 at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York City. Go to for details.

“Isamu Noguchi – Archaic/Modern” explores how pyramids, burial mounds, temples and the gardens of the ancient world shaped one of America’s most innovative sculptors. Nov. 11, 2016 – March 19, 2017. Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington D.C. Free and open daily. 8th and  G Streets NW.  Go to for details.

The Art Institute of Chicago presents the following. “The Shogun’s World: Japanese Maps of the 18th and 19th Centuries” through Nov. 6, 2016. This exhibition of maps showcases the beauty of Japanese printmaking.  Coming up – “Ink on Paper: Japanese Monochromatic Works” in Gallery 107. This exhibit showcases the simple and striking use of dark ink on paper before the advent of color printing. Nov. 12 – Jan. 29, 2017. “Provoke”: Photography in Japan Between Protest and Performance, 1960-1975.” Opens Jan. 28, 2017 and remains on view through April 30, 2017. 111 South Michigan Ave. 312-443-3600.

Yoko Ono’s first permanent installation in the Americas debuted in Chicago’s Jackson Park recently. Entitled “Sky Landing”, the piece consists of 12 steel lotus petals and mounds that form the ying yang symbol for peace. It was constructed in an area dedicated to Japan – U.S. relations. President Obama’s Presidential Library is also  scheduled to be built in this park. A 13th single lotus petal sculpture will also be placed in the Art Institute of Chicago. A companion cd of “Sky Landing” music written by Ono and recorded by Chicago-based musician Tatsu Aoki has also been released.

“Narcissus Garden” was an installation created by the grande dame of contemporary Japanese art, Yayoi Kusama for the 33rd Venice Biennale back in 1966. She re-creates that piece consisting of over 1,000  mirrored spheres at the famed American architect Phillip Johnson’s historic glazed building in New Canaan, Connecticut known as the Glasshouse Museum. Kusama floats a landscape of metallic orbs that sweep across the meadow and forest of the grounds on the way to the building. “Narcissus Garden” is on view through November,  2016. For tickets for a tour, go to  [email protected].

The Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University has the following –  Upcoming is a group exhibition that investigates a wide range of themes surrounding the changing role of women in China in an exhibition entitled “Fire Within: A New Generation of Chinese Women Artists”. Included are the work of twenty-eight emerging working in painting, installation, sculpture, video, animation, photography and performance. The generation of artists born in China during the 1970s and 1980s witnessed significant changes throughout their society as the country opened up to foreign markets and international exchange. The exhibition is accompanied by a catalog with an essay by the curator,  Dr. Wang  Chunchen and interviews with the artists. There will be various activities including performances by Hu Jiayi, Lin Ran, and Luo Wei.  On view through February 12, 2017. This museum   was designed by the late Pritzker  prize-winning architect Zaha Hadid. 504 East Circle Dr. in East Lansing, Michigan. 517-884-4800 or try [email protected].

The Philadelphia Museum of Art has re-designed the display for their superb collection of South Asian art. It re-opened on Oct. 2 after an 18 month, $2.7 million re-do, the first in over 40 years. Now collections and genres for each country are linked into two major themes – “Art and the Devine” and “Art, Power, Status.”  2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Go to for details.


“Bingata! Only in Okinawa” is an exhibit on the textile art of that country that opens Nov. 5, 2016 and remains on view through Jan. 30, 2017 at George Washington University Museum’s Textile Museum in Washington D.C.  Okinawa was an independent kingdom until 1879, with its own language, culture and distinctive textile traditions. This exhibition has textile treasures from Okinawan museum collections with brightly colored bingata traditional resist-dyed fabrics and contemporary works by Okinawan artists and fashion designers. Organized in partnership with the Okinawa Prefectural Government. 701-21st St. NW. Call 202-994-5200 or go to [email protected].

“Winter in Jeju-Do” is on view through Dec. 16, 2016. Photographer Caroline Philippone’s attempt to document this Korean island’s mountains, coastal towns and temples in winter. This island is located in the southernmost area of South Korea. Miami University Art Museum’s Douglass Gallery at 801 S. Patterson Ave. in Oxford, Ohio. Go to for details.

If current shows in Japan are any indicator, that country is in a navel-gazing mood with shows that look back to the past to evaluate the future.  In the 1960’s there was an explosion of new graphic art that graced the covers of albums and rock concert posters. Japan was not exempt from this trend and Tadanori Yokoo is best known for his vibrant poster art and album covers. “Yokoo Maniarism Vol. 1” looks at his works based on diary entries in which he attempted to draw/scribble down images from his dreams and whatever else he could catch before they dissolved from memory. On view until Nov. 27, 2016 at the Yokoo Tadanori Musem of Contemporary Art at 3-8-30 Harada-dori, Nada Ku, Kobe in Hyogo Prefecture. “Charm of the Scholar’s Desk – Water Droppers of the Joseon Dynasty” on view until Nov. 27, 2016. In the Asian tradition of calligraphy, the “four treasures of the study” are considered brush, ink, paper and inkstone” but the water dropper (used to wet inkstones) is not far behind. In the Joseon Dynasty (1397-1910), calligraphy was a popular art form for the ruling class and literati alike. Water droppers were made in a variety of shapes and sizes and decorated with ideas and motifs. This show brings together 126 water droppers from the Museum of Oriental Ceramics collection. 1-1-26 Nakanoshima, Kita-Ku in Osaka, Japan. “The Power of Colors – Contemporary Ceramic Art from the Kikuchi Collection” on view until Dec. 4, 2016. Colors take on various  significance in the world of ceramic art. This show shows the vast array of possibilities and the power of unique hues. All pieces taken from the  Tomo Kikuchi Collection. At Musee Tomo  in the Nishikubo Building, 4-1-35 Toronomon, Minato-Ku in Tokyo.

Thirty-three year old artist Hao Liang offers his contemporary version of “gongbi”, a static and meticulously refined style that reached its apex during the Song dynasty. Features eight ink- on -silk works  that reprises the theme of “Eight Views of Xiaoxing”. Nov. 4, 2016 – Jan. 8, 2017 at Ullens Center for Contemporary Art in Beijing. 4 Jiuxianqiao Rd., Chaoyang, Beijing, China. Call +86 10 578 0200 or go to [email protected].

Like Morandi, the Japanese artist Yamada Masaaki (1930-2010) spent his whole life doing the same paintings over and over again. His abstract pieces use unusual hues and imprecise horizontal stripes with drips. Opens Dec. 6, 2016 and remains on view through Feb. 12, 2017 at National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo. 3-1  Kitanomarukoen, Chiyoda in Tokyo. Call 81 3-5777-8600.

The Southern Branch of the famed National Palace Museum in Taipei has opened in Chiayi County, Taiwan. Unlike its namesake which features the cream of Chinese art that Chang Kai-shek was able to take with him when his Nationalist army fled China during the Communist take-over, this museum has a different agenda. Instead of an emphasis on Chinese culture, it presents a more global view of Asia as a whole. It focuses on how Asian cultures across the region have a shared culture using motifs in the way of objects such as textiles, ceramics, tea and references to Buddhism and Islam.

“Learning The Magic of Painting” is Takashi Murakami’s show of new work at Gallerie Perrotin in Paris on view until Dec. 23, 2016. It includes new pieces from his “500 Arhats” series  which was unveiled recently at the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo as his response to the 2011 East Japan Earthquake. He also continues his exploration of the “Enso” series (literally ‘circle’ in Japanese), a Zen Buddhist motif for  emptiness. A new wrinkle for the European audience is his triptychs and diptychs inspired by Francis bacon’s tortured figures. At 76 Rue De Turenne in Paris.

A catalog for “Simultaneity II”, the recent Art Beatus Gallery exhibition of esteemed Korean abstractionist Suh Seung-Won has been published. The publication brings together works from 1970 to the present day and discusses Suh Seung-Won’s meditative, monochrome paintings with respect to the Danseakhwa movement. With essays by Dong Jo Chang and Oh Kwang-Soo. For shipping costs email [email protected] or call 604-688-2633.

The non-profit organization known as Washington Lawyers for the Arts provides the following workshops for artists. “Art Law Institute” on Mon., Dec. 5 at noon at Perkins  Coie LLP. For more information, go to [email protected].

Lisa Sasaki, Oakland Museum of California’s Director of Audience and Civic Engagement has taken a new position as Director of the Asian Pacific American Center of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D. C. Sasaki previously worked as director of program development at the Japanese American National Museum (JANM) from 2003 – 2012.

Anicka Yi has won the 2016 Hugo Boss Prize.  Go to

The National Commission for Culture and the Arts in the Philippines chose “The Spectre of Comparison” by Joselina Cruz as the winning proposal for the Philippines Pavillion at the 57th Venice Biennale.

Bangladeshi-born, London-raised artist Rana Begum won the top prize in the Abraaj Group Art Prize 2017.

Vancouver-based architect Bing Thom who died recently at the age of 75 was one of Canada’s most respected architects whose reputation was closely related to the work he did around the city of Vancouver. He was behind the Central City Project with Simon Fraser University that transformed the downtown core in Surrey, B.C. He also designed the mead Center for American Theatre in Washington D.C. and the Tarrart County College in Ft. Worth, Texas. His recent project was the Xiqu Center, a modern home for Chinese opera in Hong Kong. He studied locally with architect Arthur Erickson and worked for Japanese architect Fumihiko Maki in the 70’s. His work was known for swooping forms, the warmth of wood and the play of light.

Performing Arts

SIS Productions presents a new play by Dipika Guha entitled “Mechanics of Love.”  (see related article in this issue)  What do a ballerina with an artificial spine, a well-organized housewife, a mechanic who wants everything and a man with keeps forgetting have in common? Well, they’re all looking for love in a mythical European city. This modern fairytale produced in association with Theatre Of Jackson has a run at that theatre through Nov. 5 (Wed. – Sun. ) Sunday performances  at 4pm. Directed by David Hsieh. Cast includes Mona Leach, Kathy Hsieh, Manny Golez or Laurence Hughes, Josh Kenji Langager and Lauren Wilder. 409 – 7th Ave. S. in Chinatown/ID neighborhood. Twitter@SeattleSIS or via #MoLOVE!

Cindy Lou Johnson’s “Brillant Traces” inaugurates the opening of ReAct Theatre’s new performance space at Prima Vera Arts Center on now through Dec. 4. The play deals with the issues of love and family when two strangers find themselves stranded in a remote cabin in the Alaskan wilderness and begun to bond.  Stars Francesca  Betancourt and Cooper Harris-Turner.  Directed by David Hsieh. Performances are on Friday and Sat. at 8pm and Sundays at 2pm & 8pm. Nov. 6 is a “pay-what-you-can” night and if you bring a food bank donation, you get $1 off your ticket. Get your tickets at or call 1-800-838-3006 or  206-364-3283. For details, go to

Café Nordo located at 109 South Main St. in Pioneer Square latest production “Hotel Nordo” evokes the 125 year old history of a former neighborhood hotel with a surrealistic dinner that ties into the hotel’s haunting tales of death, loss and regret. On Nov. 11 & 12, Café Nordo will add an overnight stay to the current production. At the conclusion of “Hotel Nordo” audience members who sign up will be led to the historic Panama Hotel at 6th & Main in Seattle’s old Japantown where they will check into a room to stay the night and be treated to a performance of “YUREI: The Lost Chapter of Hotel Nordo at the Panama Hotel.” You will be a witness to history as this hotel served as a temporary place of Japanese American working immigrants and where many families left their belongings when they were forced into internment camps during WWII. Many never returned to pick up their belongings. A local team of  Japanese and Japanese American artists have created an immersive “lost chapter” for this show. For $500, you get a room for two at the Panama, plus the Hotel Nordo theatre experience with dinner, the “YUREI” performance and a midnight snack, sake toast and breakfast. Go to for tickets. Peformers include Naho Shioya, Paul Kikuchi, Susie Kozawa, Joselynn Engstrom and Crow Nishimura. For those of you who don’t wish to spend the night, there will also be a free performance of “YUREI” on Sat., Nov. 12 from 5 – 7pm at the Panama Hotel. 206-547-6215 or go to for details.

Local actress Kathy Hsieh fresh from her work at SIS Productions “Mechanics of Love” also appears in “White Rabbit Red Rabbit”, a new play for 18th & Union Productions in which the actor or actress is given the idea for the script shortly before appearing on stage and commences improvising off that theme spontaneously. A real challenge for sure. Runs from Nov. 13 – Nov. 19 with a rotating cast. Sara Porkalob appears on Nov. 14 and Kathy Hsieh takes her turn on Nov. 18. 1406 – 18th Ave. Th. – Sat. at 7:30pm and also on Mon., Nov. 14 at 7:30pm. 206-937-6499 or go to Hsieh will also be part of the cast for the “Short Stories Live” series at Town Hall Seattle on Dec. 11, 2016. 1119 Eighth Ave. 206- 652-4255.

Jeanne Sakata’s play inspired by the life of civic activist Gordon Hirabayashi entitled “Hold These Truths”  starring Ryan Yu is being performed until Nov. 13 . Directed by Jessica Kubzansky in the Ellyn Bye Studio at the Gerding Theater at the Armory at 128 NW 11th Ave. For details, go to Both actor and director worked on the same production when it had its world premiere at East West Players in Los Angeles. Born and rasied in Seattle, Hirabayashi made headlines by  refusing to submit to the exclusion order that put Japanese Americans in the internment camps during WW II. He questioned the necessity of the federal order all the way to the Supreme Court.

En Taiko, a Portland taiko company open to local youth has a free fall concert set for Sun., Nov. 13, 2016 at St. Paul Church at 1pm. 3880 SE Brooklyn St. in Portland. For details, contact [email protected].

“Phase#5” is the title given to three live evening performances at Suyama Space choreographed by Isabelle Choiniere with Fernanda D’Agostino centered around D’Agostino’s current installation “GENERATIVITY” there through Dec. 16, 2016. The performances take place on Sat., Nov. 19 at 6, 7 and 8pm. This live performance integrates 5 dancers’ bodies simultaneously as one mass, 5 voices and one choir as an organic electro-acoustic soundscape. The performers are Lisa Kusanagi, Juju Kusanagi, Tahni Holt, Eliza Larson and Lucy Lee Yim. Creative coding provided by Jim Bell, Karim Lakhdar and Kevin McDonald. $5 tickets can be purchased at (specify time preference from the drop-down menu). There will be no cellphones or mobile devices allowed during the performance. For more information, go to or call 206-256-0809.

Award-winning lighting designer Lap-chi Chu will do the honors for Seattle Rep’s production of Mike Bartlett’s “King Charles III” which looks at what happens if Prince Charles ascends the throne after his mother’s death. The play has received advance praise in its production in England. Robert Joy plays the lead. Nov. 11 – Dec. 18. Bagley Wright  Theatre at Seattle Center. 155 Mercer St.  Tickets at or call 206-443-2222.

Meany Center For The Performing Arts at UW has as usual an exciting assortment of programs for every taste whether under the categories of “Dance”, “Piano”, “World Music” or “Chamber Music” for their 2016-2017 season. The Shen Wei Dance Arts group with their special blend of contemporary dance and Asian tradition performs “Neither” set to Morton Feldman’s opera of the same name with a libretto by Samuel Beckett March 16 – 18, 2017 at 8pm. Korean concert pianist Joyce Yang has been getting rave reviews for her recitals. She visits on Nov. 3, 2016 at 8pm. KODO, the Japanese group that started the world phenomenon for the sound of the Japanese drum, the taiko make a welcome return as well. They take the stage on Feb. 3 – 4 , 2017 at 8pm. 206-543-4880 or go to MEANYCENTER.ORG for details. Single tickets and  subscriptions on sale now.

Here’s a sneak peek at some of the programs Seattle Symphony has to offer under the baton of Music Director Ludovic Morlot later this year going into 2016/2017.  Bass vocalist Jonathan Lemalu is part of the choir performing Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with Ludovic Morlot conducting January 5 and 7. Kevin Ahfat is featured pianist during the Symphony’s “Shostakovich Concerto Festival”. He’s perform with Pablo Rus Broseta conducting the following. On Thurs., January 19 – Piano Concerto No. 1, Violin Concerto No. 2  and Cello Concerto No. 1. On Friday, January 20 – Cello Concerto No. 2, Piano Concerto No. 2  and Violin Concerto No. 1.  Cellist Yo Yo  Ma makes what seems to be one of annual Seattle visits when he performs a program of Bartok, Mozart and Haydn with Seattle Symphony under the baton of Pablo Rus Broseta on Friday, October 14 at 8pm. On Sunday, March 26 at 4pm, the annual “Celebrate Asia” concert returns featuring movie music by famous Chinese and Indian composers including Grammy and Academy Award winners Tan Dun and A. R. Rahman. Finally on Friday, February 10 at 8pm, catch violinist Leonidas Kavakos & pianist Yuja Wang in a program featuring Medtner’s “Two Canzonas with Dances for Violin and Piano and other works by Schubert, Debussy and Bartok. For details on tickets, go to or call (206) 215-4747.

Tea ceremony demonstrations continue at Seattle Art Museum downtown on Third Thursdays at 5:30pm and Third Sundays at 2:30pm in the Japanese teahouse on the third floor of SAM. Free with admission. Go to for details.

Emerald City Music is a new local organization specializing in chamber music. They recently announced their first season featuring over 40 world-class musicians with many performances all over Puget Sound. There will be seven in Seattle, two in Tacoma and five in Olympia. The concerts are curated  by Kristen Lee, Artist Director and violinist. Some of the musicians include Ben Hong, Tien-hsin Cindy, David Requiro, The Dover Quartet, Gloria Chien, Hyeyeon Park, Windsync, Yura Lee and Kristen Lee. Concerts will be at Washington Center, 415 Westlake, Lagerquitt Concert Hall, Minnaert Center and St. Michael Westside Church. Go to for details.

Seattle Rep presents the world-premiere of a compelling new medical drama by local playwright Karen Hartman entitled “Rox And Ray.” It’s the story of Ray, a single dad of two hemophiliac boys who believes he’s found a miracle in Dr. Rox until tragedy strikes. Through Nov. 13 In the Leo K. Theatre. Directed by Chay Yew (Artistic Director of Victory Gardens Theater in Chicago where the play goes next). 206-443-2222.

The Japanese Community Service present their 5th annual benefit entitled “Musical Bridge Concert” on Sat., Nov. 19, 2016 from 1:30 – 3:30pm. The concert features jazz pianist/composer Senri Oe, Seattle vocalist Minami Hughes, Seattle Matsuri Taiko/Fujima Dance Ensemble and Voice of Kids – 2016 with Fumi Tagata. $10 for ages 7 – 18 and 65-84 and $20 for ages 19 – 64. Free for ages under 7 or over 84. Held at Renton IKEA Performing Arts Center. Go to for details.

Hmong New Year Celebration  brings traditional hilltop Chinese, Lao and Thai performances, arts and activities with food, market vendors and games. Free. Nov. 5, 2016 at Seattle Center Armory all day long.

“Diwali: Lights of India” celebrates the Festival of Lights, one of the most popular festivals in India. Dance lessons, henna booths, sari stations, puppet show, face painting, food and vendors. Nov. 6 all day at Seattle Center Armory. Free.

Chan Centre, the premier performing arts theatre space for the University of British Columbia in Vancouver B.C. presents the following. The China Philharmonic with conductor Long Yu and solo pianist Serena Wang perform Beethoven’s First Piano Concerto and Dvorak’s “New World Symphony” on Nov. 30, 2016. The Taiwan Philharmonic conducted by Shao-Chia Liu with solo violinist Yu-Chien Tseng perform the first Vancouver performance of the late composer Tyen Hsiano’s “Violin Concerto” on Dec. 9, 2016. Anda Union, a nine-member band that unites tribal and musical traditions from all over Inner Mongolia. A wide range of traditional instruments and vocal throat singing styles are used. They are part of the new season and will perform on March 26, 2017 at 8pm.  Go to for details on their complete season.  Single tickets on sale on June 14, 2016  from noon on.

Town Hall Seattle always has eclectic and provocative programming for every taste and genre. On Nov. 14 at 7:30pm, Yale University astronomy and physics Professor Priyamvada Natarajan gives a talk entitled “Mapping the Heavens” which looks at recent cosmological discoveries that “reshaped our universe.” The Serendipity Quartet, a local string quartet appears in a free program entitled “Sunnier, Rainier – A String Quartet for Seattle” on Sun., Dec. 18 at 7pm in the downstairs hall. They will perform the world premiere of Adam Stern’s “Crossroads” which explores the dynamic nature of Seattle and also audience favorites Shostakovich String Quartet No. 8 and Dvorak’s String Quartet No. 12. Town Hall Seattle is at 1119 8th Ave. downtown in the First Hill neighborhood. 206-652-4255.

Seattle Gamelan Pacifica performs on Cornish College of the Arts Poncho Hall on Sat., Dec. 3, 2016 at 8pm.  710 E. Roy St. 1-800-726-ARTS. In 2017, they celebrate the centenary of great American composer Lou Harrison who wrote many modern compositions for gamelan on Sat., May 13 at 8pm. Chapel Performance Space at 4649 Sunnyside Ave. N. (4th floor) in Seattle’s Wallingford neighborhood.

Korean American composer, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Bora Yoon appears in concert on Friday, Nov. 4, 2016 at 8pm. She is known to conjure up audio-visual soundscapes using digital devices, voice and found objects that fit each architectural space she inhabits. Cornish College Poncho Hall. 710 E. Roy St. 1-800-726-ARTS.

Want to know what a spoken word artist thinks of Bruce Lee and his portrayal in the mainstream media?  Check out local poet Troy Osaki’s tribute read online in a Chinatown/ID alley at https://vimeo/179880320.

The leader of the K-Pop idol group 2NE1 who goes by the name of CL has signed with Scooter Braun, Justin Bieber’s agent. She recently embarked on her first US tour and played Seattle  recently at the ShowBox in SODO on Halloween.

Portland Piano/Clearing Presents sponsor a recital of short pieces for solo piano by Claudia Chan and Yihan Chen. On Friday, Nov. 11, 2016 at 8pm. Lincoln Recital Hall in Room 75. 1620 Southwest Park Ave.  in Portland, Oregon. Go to for details.

We hear all about the Vietnam war told from the American viewpoint but rarely do we get a Vietnamese perspective. That changes when Seattle gets a double dose of playwright Qui Nguyen’s work. His play “Vietgone” has earned rave reviews in New York and sold out quickly at Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Now it comes  to Seattle Repertory Theatre for a one month run from Dec. 2 – Jan. 1, 2017. Two Vietnamese immigrants travel around the country learning the language and navigating the complexities of refugee camps. Directed by May Adrales and produced in association with Oregon Shakespeare Festival.155 Mercer St.  206-443-2222 or go to In addition another Nguyen play entitled “The Inexplicable Redemption of Agent G”  gets a UW School of Drama LAB Project workshop production Directed by Ali el-Gasseir. This play tells the story of character revolt. When playwright Nguyen refuses to finish his “Gook Story Trilogy”, he gets kidnapped by his main character who forces him to pen the story he’s been avoiding for 10 years. It’s a fun ride filled with racist puppets, ninjas and one very angry David Henry Hwang. Runs from Dec. 6 – 11, 2016 at Glenn Hughes Penthouse Theatre in the “U” District . Located at the north entrance to the UW campus between NE 45th S. & 17th Ave. NE. For tickets, try 206-543-4880 or go to or [email protected].

The famed Peking Acrobats make two appearances in the Puget Sound area. They are at the Edmonds Center For The Arts on Jan. 25, 2017 at 7:30pm. 425-275-9595. They appear again hosted by the Broadway Center at Pantages Theater on Jan. 29, 2017. 253-591-5894.

Coming early in 2017 will be the touring production of the new edition of the musical “The King And I” as re-imagined by former Seattle Intiman Theater director Bartlett Sher. Jan. 24 – Feb. 3. Part of Seattle Theatre Group Presents’ new season. Go to or call 206-812-1114 for details.

On The Boards presents their new fall season of performance art.  Geumhyung Jeong from Seoul was trained as a dancer and puppeteer. This Korean artist makes work centered around the human body and inanimate objects. She performs “CPR Practice” on Jan. 25 – 26 in the theatre and “Oil Pressure Vibrator” (in which she operates industrial equipment) at an outside site to be announced on Jan. 28 – 29. On The Boards is located in Queen Anne at 100 W. Roy St. 206-217-9886.

The Theatre at Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue has the following events scheduled at their venue. Seattle Chinese Chorus performs on Oct. 23. Seattle hula Productions present “Hawai’i’s Legends.” Seattle East West Performing Arts Group hit the stage on Jan. 14, 2017. Chinese Radio Seattle has a program set for Feb. 4, 2017. 11100 NE 6th St. in Bellevue. 425-637-1020.

“SAM Performs” series presents a concert entitled “Legendary Children” on Nov. 5 at Seattle Art Museum downtown from 8 – 11pm. The QTPOC communities celebrate with performances, DJs, and art from some of Seattle’s most talented queer artists of color, and community conversations sparked by the current exhibition, “Yves Saint Laurent: The Perfection of Style. For tickets, go to or call 206-654-3210 or just visit the SAM or SAAM desk.

“Global Party” is a celebration with young local talent performing music and dance from around the world. Produced by STG Education & Community Programs. Nov. 18 at the Moore Theatre. 1932 Second Ave. 206-812-3284 or go to

Seattle favorite stand-up comic/storyteller Hari Kondabolu comes out with a new album entitled “Mainstream American Comic” (Kill Rock Stars) and celebrates with an album release show. Dec.  5 -7,  2016. The Triple Door at 216 Union St. downtown Seattle. 206-838-4333 or go to

“Those Who Remain: Concerto for Installation and Improvisor” is an international collaboration which will feature a sound and video installation by video artist and DJ Yohei Saito and dancer/choreographer Yukio Suzuki from Japan and a new electronic score by Seattle composer/musician Wayne Horvitz. Suzuki who was named “Choreographer for the Next Generation” by Toyota will perform several short dance improvisations daily within the installation. Horvitz will give an evening performance with Sherik and Beth Fleenor on Jan. 27 at 7:30pm. Additional after-hours performances on Jan. 31 at 7:30pm,  Feb. 3 and Feb. 4. Seattle Asian Art Museum in Volunteer Park. Go to for more details. Supported by the Japan Foundation through the Performing Arts JAPAN program.

Fans of Hawaiian music will want to take note of this one. Keola Beamer and Jeff Peterson appear at the Edmonds Center For The Arts with Moanalani Beamer representing the younger generation on March 25, 2017 at 7:30pm. 425-275-9595.

Lauren Yee is one of the hottest playwrights around now and her play, “King of the Yees” feels like one of her most personal. The plot has the protagonist Lauren looking for her dad who has suddenly disappeared. The playwright describes it as “an epic joyride through Chinatown.” Seattle ACT Theatre has included this play on their 2017 schedule. Set for  Sept. 8 – Oct. 1,  2017.

Canadian playwright Anusree Roy shows her versatility with two new plays running simultaneously in Vancouver BC, one for adults and one for kids. “Brothel #9” pits a woman thrown mistakenly into a desperate situation with a madame who feels she must resign herself to her fate. Nov. 17 – 27 at Vancity Culture Lab at the Cultch. 1895 Venables St.  604-251-1363 or go to Her other play entitled “Sultans of the Street” looks at the lives of Indian street urchins. It plays from Oct. 29 – Nov. 13 at Carousel Theatre for Young People located at 1411 Cartwright St. 604-669-3410 or go to [email protected].

Tetsuro Shigematsu and her father were both broadcasters. Shigematsu wrote and stars in “Empire of the Son”, a one person performance that tells the story of two generations of broadcasters and the radio silence between them. This show completely sold out when it premiered in 2015 so the folks at Vancity Culture Lab at the Cultch in Vancouver, BC  are bringing it back for a second run Nov. 1 – 13. Get your tickets quick. 1895 Venables St. 604-251-1363 or try

Tapestry Opera of Toronto under the direction of Artistic Director Michael Mori will kick off their 37th season with “Naomi’s Road” which covers events based on the Japanese-Canadian internment camps in the BC interior and Alberta during WWII. The opera is taken from a novel by noted Canadian writer Joy Kogawa as adapted by librettist and director Ann Hodges and composer Romona Luengen. Nov. 16 – 20 at St. David’s Anglican Church, home of the last Japanese-Canadian Anglican parish in Toronto. Go to for details.

Bay Area Filipino American theatre group Bindlestiff Studio has named Aureen Almario as their new Artistic Director. Almario has a long history with the theatre having been a resident artist and performed in many of their productions. For details, go to

The world premiere of Ravi Shankar’s only opera will have its premiere in May 2017 at Leicester’s Curve Theatre in England. It was composed in his final years and brought to completion by his longtime collaborator David Murphy and his daughter, Anoushka. Named “Sukanya” (after his second wife), the opera tells the story of a Princess Sikanya.  The libretto is by Amit Chadhuri and it is directed by Suba Das. After its debut, it will do a brief tour of England.

It’s been twenty years since revered Japanese composer Toru Takemitsu died. Recently the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra led by Takemitsu friend/colleague Oliver Knussen marked that occasion with an all Takemitsu program of his compositions primarily from the 1960’s at Takemitsu Memorial Concert Hall in Tokyo. Takemitsu was a largely self-taught composer who had the uncanny ability to combine traditional Japanese musical elements into Western music. He also composed scores for over 90 movies and loved pop music. He was quoted as saying, “My music is something like a signal sent to the unknown.”

Miya Masaoka is a Japanese American composer and  koto player. She has pushed the koto into the future with her experimental playing. “Triangle of Resistance” (Innova) may be her most personal recording yet. Taken from her mother’s memories of incarceration in internment camp during WWII, Masaoka has written a soundtrack for the experience of Japanese American internees.

Noted contemporary composer Bun-Ching Lam who formerly taught at Cornish College and now splits her time between Paris and the East Coast has a series of concerts in Europe with compositions inspired by and using the poetry of Etel Adnan. “Musique Et Poesie – Compositions de Bun-Ching Lam et Poesie de Etel Adnan” will be performed with baritone vocalist Thomas Buckner, Caroline Delume on lute , Gionata Sgambaro on flute with Trio K/D/M (vibraphones and accordion) & Quatuor Tana (string quartet). They perform Nov. 6 at “Cite des Arts” in the Edmond Michelet Auditorium in Paris and Nov. 8 at Galerie Deletaille in Brussels.

Ani Choying Drolma is a Buddhist nun in Nepal who is a UNICEF goodwill ambassador, a religious icon and works to help keep a girl’s school and hospital for kidney patients in operation. But what she’s most known for is her music. She is one of Nepal’s most famous pop stars with over 12 albums of Nepali tunes and Tibetan hymns. Conservative Buddhists question her values and how she can reconcile the simple life of a religious ascetic with the fame and wealth accumulated from her musical career. She counters that most of the money goes to educational charities. “I am totally against the conservative, conventional idea of a Buddhist nun. Some people think a nun should be someone who does not come out in the media so much, who is isolated…always in a monastery, always shy. But I don’t believe in that.” Taken from the Associated Press story by Binaj Gurubacharyn

Film & Media

The Grand Illusion, one of Seattle’s oldest independent cinemas has an interesting mix of classic films and new anime from Asia. Akiyuki Shinbo & Tatsuya Oishi’s animated series about a blonde vampire plays in Nov. Nov. 1 is “Vampire Kizumonogatari Part 1: Tekketsu.” Nov. 2 – 8 brings “Part 2:Nekketsu.” 1403  NE 50th  in the University District. 206-523-3935 or try [email protected].

The 20th Vancouver Asian Film Festival is on Nov. 3 – 6. 20-16 at the Cineplex Odeon International Village Cinema in  Vancouver’s Chinatown. Go to for details.

Seattle-raised poet Paisley Rekdal joins Erin Belieu and Ek Skoog to pay tribute to the work of Northwest poet legends Carolyn Kizer and Theodore Roethke in a program entitled “Pulitzers in Person (Part Two) broadcast live on Nov. 13, 2016 at 7pm (PST) on The Roots Channel. Th9s program is part of the Pulitzer Prizes Centennial Campfire Initiative, a joint venture of the Pulitzer Prizes Board and the Federation of State Humanities Councils in celebration of the 2016 centennial of the Pulitzer Prizes.

Coming soon  are these films. “The Free World”, the story of  an ex-con who becomes involved with a married woman abused by her husband. Written and directed by Jason Lew. “Tharlo” directed by Pema Tseden and starring Shide Nyima as a Tibetan shepherd who is forced to go into town and interact with people where he meets a certain woman who opens up his world.  “M. S. Dhoni: The Untold Story” is a biopic look at the rags-to-riches story of cricket star starring Sushant Singh Rajput as directed by Neeraj Pandey. Look for these new films in October. “Miss Hokusai” is a full-length animated feature film from Japan about a woman artist who draws amazing portraits inside her studio while her father takes all the credit. Directed by Kenichi Hara. Opens Oct. 28 and screens through Nov. 3 at SIFF Film Center. Go to for details. “Sky Ladder: The Art of Cai Guo-Qiang” is a documentary film by Kevin McDonald on this Chinese artist who uses pyrotechnics, fire and gunpowder for his performance works set again the canvas of a dark night sky (although those in Seattle may know him for his hanging cars installation recently taken down at Seattle Art Museum downtown). Release date is Oct. 14, 2016.”Creepy” is a redundant title for the new film by Japanese master of horror Kiyoshi Kurosawa in which a former detective is called back to work on a very peculiar case. “The Eagle Huntress” is a unique documentary film about Alshoipan, a 13 year old Kazakh eagle hunter in Mongolia, the first girl to be trained for the job in 12 generations of her family. Directed by Otto Bell. Opens Nov. 18 at a Landmark Theatre in Seattle. In November, look out for these films. “Lion” is taken from a true story and a book that tells the story of an Indian boy found on the streets of Calcutta who is eventually adopted by an Australian couple. When he is an adult, he returns to India determined to find his real parents. Stars Dev Patel, Nicole Kidman, Rooney Mara and directed by Garth Davis. “Red Stone”  is a Chinese film of injustice and retribution by Johnny Ma who wrote and directed. A taxi driver distracted by a customer accidentally hits a motorcyclist and then takes him to the hospital. For his good deed, he is forced to pay medical fees  and almost loses his job.

Ang Lee’s next film will be an adaptation of the novel “Billy Lynn’s Long Half-time Walk”, a National Book Critics Circle Award winner written by Ben Fountain. It is the story of an Iraq war veteran returning home on a “victory tour.” Opens in theatres on Nov. 11, 2016.

One should never go hungry to see the late Juzo Itami’s “Tampopo”, a “Ramen Western” search for the best ramen in all of Japan. But you won’t worry about that because as an added bonus when you attend this screening of this gastronomic classic, a bowl of ramen is offered to each customer so you slurp along to each reel. SIFF Cinema Uptown. Nov. 23, 2016. 511 Queen Anne Ave. N. 206-324-9996.

Sure to get a wide release in movie theatres locally is Zhang Yimou’s latest film in which Hollywood star Matt Damon plays a Chinese soldier who saves China in “The Great Wall,” What? Chow-yun “Donald” Fat wasn’t available or maybe Yimou wanted a crossover hit that would fill theatres with Western audiences. Opens Nov. 23.

Also coming to local theatres in  is “The Handmaiden” by one of South Korean’s most popular filmmakers, Park Chan-Wook (“Old Boy”). This film takes place in 1930’s  Japan.  Newcomer Kim Tae-Ri steals the show as a Korean servant hired to care for a wealthy woman with more on her mind than work. The film is a lesbian revenge thriller based on a Victorian-era novel by Sarah Waters. The film takes you on a jarring joyride of moods alternatively rich in graphic sensuality, then horror and then slapstick or a sudden turn to a  silly comedy of manners, often within a single scene. It was favorably reviewed at the Cannes Film Festival. Opens Oct. 28 at  the Egyptian through Nov. 3 and then moves to the SIFF Uptown on Nov. 4. Also opens  Oct. 28 at the  Guild 45th in Wallingford.

Filipino filmmaker Lav Diaz won the 73rd Golden Lion Prize at the Venice Film Festival for “The Woman Who Left Nothing” which tells a tale of a woman framed by a man who ends up imprisoned for 30 years. When she gets out she seeks revenge but returns to a world and society she no longer recognizes. Shot in black & white, the film runs almost 4 hours but is short by the director’s standards. Previous films of his have clocked in at 11 hours plus. In his acceptance speech, Diaz said “This is for my country, for the Filipino people, for our struggle and the struggle of humanity.” A stark, unflinching look at the division of power among classes  in Filipino society. Obviously not a commercial venture, one hopes that one of the local art house theatres in Seattle will pick it up.

The 4th Annual Friday Harbor Film Festival takes place Nov. 4 – 6 with “Stories of the Pacific Rim & Beyond” at 5 venues with 40+ documentary films and a “Young Filmmakers Project” and “Filmmakers Forum.” Go to for details.

Celebrate and honor the duty of Chinese American veterans with the premiere of two documentary films. “Honor and Duty: The Mississippi Delta Chinese” and “Cathay Post #186 Project”, a local project of the International Examiner. Films screen  at 10am on Sat., Nov. 12. Executive producers of the Mississippi documentary, Gwendolyn Gong and E. Samantha Cheng and crew members of the Cathy Post documentary will be on hand at the screening and throughout the day for questions. Free. Reserve your tickets online at Part of the Tateuchi Story Theatre Performing Arts Series sponsored by the Atsuhiko and Ina Goodwin Tateuchi Foundation.  Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience at 719 South King St. 206-623-5124 or go to

The Sixth Annual Seattle Shorts Film Festival comes to town Nov. 11 – 13 with guest speakers and short talks. SIFF Film Center. Northwest Rooms  at Seattle Center. 206-324-9996.

Filmmaker Ema Ryan Yamazaki is finishing up a documentary film entitled “Monkey Business: The Curious Adventures of George’s Creators.” In it, she traces the origins of the internationally loved children’s book character, the monkey known as “Curious George” and his creators, the Ray’s. For a story on this project, go to

“Mixed Match” is a documentary film by Jeff Chiba Sterns. He is the founder of Meditating Bunny Studio Inc. in Vancouver BC. It looks at the important human story told from the perspective of mixed blood cancer patients who are forced to reflect on their multiracial identities and complex genetics as they struggle with a difficult search to find bone marrow donors, all while exploring what role race plays in medicine. It has its World Premiere at the Vancouver International Film Festival in Oct. For more information, email [email protected] or go to

Japanese film director Takeshi Kitano (also known as Beat Takeshi) will receive the Legion of Honor Award by the French government for his impact on contemporary arts.

As tensions run  high between governments in Pakistan and India because of militant attacks, it has affected arts and culture as well. A hardline Hindu Nationalist Party has threated to attack theatres  in India where Bollywood films with Pakistani actors are screened leading to a ban. Pakistan has likewise refused to allow any Indian films to be screened in their country.


The Written Arts

We Are a Crowd of Others  presents “The  Poetics of Haunting” ( , a multimedia event facilitated by the poet Jane Wong. Wong states that “A poetics of haunting insists on invocation: a deliberate, powerful, and provocative move toward haunted places.” Several readings/performances will be shared by  Asian American artists in the project including Don Mee Choi, Diana Khoi Nguyen and Pimone Triplett. The project tries to respond to the following questions. How does history—particularly the history of war, colonialism and marginalization—impact the work of Asian American poets across time and space. How does language act as a haunting space of intervention and activism?” The event takes place on Tues., Nov. 8 at 7pm. Done  in conjunction with an art installation and event series at MadArt Studio located at 325 Westlake Ave. N. #101 south of Lake Union.

Dusie is an on-line literary magazine. Their “Asian-Anglophone” issue #19 is guest edited by Cynthia Arrieu-King and features local poets Don Mee Choi, Shin Yu Pai, Jane Wong and yours truly. Former Seattle residents Brandon Shimoda and Anna Maria Hong are also included. Go to and then push the small number 19 and you will see the cover of the magazine. Push your indicator on that cover and the magazine should pop up. The issue is a good cross-section of newer generations of Asian American poets as well as some older ones.

Elliott Bay Book Company presents a series of readings and events. All are at the bookstore unless noted otherwise. Jane Wong and Don Mee Choi join Aharanth Borsuk, Jennifer Kronovet, Sarah Mangold and Sarah Rosenthal in a reading. All local poets  with new books to read from. Thurs., Nov. 3 at 7pm.   Writer Ha Jin reads from his new novel entitled “The Boat Rocker” (Pantheon) which looks at the price of integrity in the internet age as a Chinese expatriate reporter goes after his unscrupulous ex-wife only to find Communist officials trying to take him down in return. This  reading on Fri., Nov. 4 at 7pm at the Microsoft Auditorium at Seattle Central  Library downtown.    Also on Nov. 4 at 7:30pm, the Hugo Literary Series presents Alexander Chee, Kirstin Valdez Quade, Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore and music group, The Royal Que. All read from and perform new material centered  around the theme of “Animals”. This takes place appropriately at Fred Wildlife Refuge located at 128 Belmont Ave. E. on lower Capitol Hill. $25 general,  Hugo House members  $20 and $10 students for this event. For details, go to    Singer/songwriter Tomo Nakayama joins a host of other writers and artists in celebrating Forterra’s magazine, Ampersand in “Ampersand Live” on Thurs. Nov. 10 at 7:30pm at Town Hall Seattle hosted by David Schmader. Doors open 6:30pm Go to for tickets. 1119 Eighth Ave. at Seneca.    Back at the book store come the following – Elliott Bay & Seattle Review of Books present Sherman Alexie, E.J. Koh and Robert Lashley who reprise what was considered one of the best readings at Bumbershoot. Koh’s debut collection won the Pleiades Press Editor’s Prize and comes out in 2017. Lashley’s “The Homeboy Songs” (Small Doggies Press) has received hearty praise as well. With all the genres that Sherman Alexie  can write in, it’s easy to forget he started out as a fine poet first. He reads from his latest collection, “What I’ve Stolen, What I’ve Earned” (Hanging Loose Press).    On Fri., Nov. 11 at 7pm. Seattle writer Donna Miscolta who previously looked at the Filipino side of her lineage (“When the De La Cruz Family Danced”) now takes a look at the Mexican side of her family in a  book of short stories entitled “Hola and Goodbye: Una Familia in Stories” set for Nov. 12 at 7pm. This new book won her the 2015 Doris Bakwin Prize for Writing by a Woman.    Northwest poet Leah Lakshmi Pipezna-Samarainha joins Imani Sims and Annah Anti-Palindrone in a lively evening of poetry and sound as all read and perform from new books on Sat., Nov. 19 at 7pm.    Bruce & Ju Chan Fulton are here with two new translations of literature from Korea. They read from “The Future of Silence: Fiction by Korean Women (Zephyr Press) and Cho Chongnae’s “The Human Jungle” (Chin Music Press) on Mon., Nov. 28 at 7pm.   Elliott Bay Book Company is at 1521 Tenth Ave. in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. 206-624-6600.

Hugo House has announced its temporary re-location during construction of its new building across from Cal Anderson Park. Beginning in mid-2016, Hugo House’s public programs and offices will be based in a building owned by, and adjacent to, the Frye Art museum at Boren Avenue and Columbia Street on First Hill. Hugo House will operate a full schedule of readings,  classes, book launches, workshops, teen programs, and more at the Frye while its new building is being constructed. Events will take place here and in the Frye’s auditorium as well at the nearby Elliott Bay Book Company and Sorrento Hotel. Beginning May 21, classes continue at Hugo House’s temporary home at 1021 Columbia near Frye Art Museum. By 2018, Hugo House will return to its original site and occupy a ground-floor space in a new six-story, mixed-use building. In related news, Hugo House has produced “The Writer’s Welcome Kit”, an exclusive e-course that combines guidance on the writing craft and resources to help the writer excel. Go to for details. The organization has announced their “Writer-in-Residence and Made  at Hugo House Fellows” for 2016-2017. Local journalist-turned-novelist and Seattle University professor Sonora Jha will be a writer-in-residence. She will assist writers during free hour-long appointments. She is currently working on a memoir entitled “This Little Matter of Love”. She writes that “As woman writer and professor of color whose research and active service work is rooted in representation, I am particularly excited also about extending the reach of Hugo House into under-represented communities in Seattle to clear the path for such writers to emerge in mainstream, meaningful, and lasting (rather than token) ways.” Shankar Narayan was chosen as one of the “Made at Hugo House Fellows” Narayan is a 2016 Kundiman Fellow whose work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. He works as an attorney and advocate for civil rights. “Made at Hugo House” is a yearlong fellowship for emerging writers selected by an anonymous advisory panel of writers. The six fellows chosen will complete writing projects with guidance and support from Hugo House. Narayan is working on a chapbook of poems influenced by technology, race and power.  Award-winning novelist Alexander Chee  (“The Queen of the Night”) comes to the Hugo Literary Series to read on Nov. 4, 2016 under the theme of “Animals” with Kristin Valdez Quade and Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore. This reading takes place at Fred Wildlife Refuge at 7:30pm and costs $25. Find it at 128 Belmont Ave. E.  Spoken word artist Anis Mojgani  who spins sublime tales of the imagination from personal encounters and childhood memories of the deep South comes in from Portland to perform on April 7, 2017. Other writers coming from the fall events calendar include the following – “Contagious Exchanges: Queer Writers in Conversation”  on Dec. 7  at 7pm brings Randa Jarrar with Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha. “Made at Hugo House 2015-2016” presents a final reading by the “Made at Hugo House” current fellows who will read from their respective writing projects on Nov. 11, 2016 at 7pm. Prose writer Diana Xin is in this group. Reading is free. Hugo House now adds manuscript consultations to its long list for resources for writers.  There are currently five consultants for short fiction, novels, memoirs, essays, poetry, young adult and literary journalism and more to be added as the program continues. For details on this, go to hugo For general information, try 206-453-1937. Hugo House is at 1021 Columbia St. in Seattle.

Seattle poet Koon Woon   reads from his new memoir  “Paper Son Poet” around the Puget Sound. He reads with Dan Raphael and Willie Smith with Open Mic at Couth Buzzard Books at 8310 Greenwood Ave. N. on Thurs., Nov. 3 at 7pm. 206-436-2960. Then again as part of the “It’s About Time Writers’ Reading Series” at the Ballard Branch Library on Nov. 10 at 6pm. He shares the evening with fellow writers Katie Tynan and Roselle Kovitz. With an  Open Mic. Free. 5614 22nd Ave. NW in Seattle. 206-684-4089.

Readings at the Seattle Central Library downtown include the following –  Liz Wong (“Quackers”) joins fellow authors/illustrators Jessica Bagley, Ben Clanton, Jennifer K. Mann and Julie Paschkis in a Picture Book Author Panel to discuss their work on Nov. 6  at 2pm. Noted poet and novelist Ha Jin (“Waiting”) reads from his new novel about corruption, integrity and writing entitled “The Boat Rocker” on Nov. 4. 7pm.  Tim Wu comes on Nov. 17 at 7pm to talk about his book entitled “The Attention Merchants: The Epic Scramble to Get Inside Our Heads”. All events are free.1000 Fourth Ave. 206-386-4636 or go to

Jack Straw Cultural Center & Raven Chronicles Press present: “A Reading/Reception Celebrating 20 Years of the Jack Straw Writers Program, 1997 – 2016” on Fri., Nov. 18 at 7pm. Free. Vol. 23 of Raven Chronicles also publishes new work from 40 out of the 255 alumni from the first twenty years of the Jack Straw Writers Program. Some of the writers expected to read include Maliha Masood, Harold Taw, Sharon Hashimoto, EJ Koh and many others. Former Washington State Poet Laureate Kathleen Flenniken emcees. 4261 Roosevelt Way NE.

Astrophysicist Priyamvada Natarajan discusses her book “Mapping the Heavens” (Yale) on Mon. Nov. 14 at 7:30pm. She explains the ideas that reshaped our universe over the past century. At Town Hall Seattle at  1119 – 8th Ave. Presented by University Book Store and Town Hall Seattle.

Bharti Kirchner and Donna Miscolta are just some of the 27 local authors expected to be at the Seattle Writers Holiday Bookfest with readings and book signings, a boutique bookstore and treats made by the authors. Nov. 19 at 3pm. Free. Phinney Neighborhood Center.6532 Phinney Ave. N. in Seattle. 206-784-2244 or  go to

“Sherman Alexie Loves” is a new series that Seattle Arts & Lectures has started with the noted Northwest writer. It features three evenings of conversation with authors that the author loves. Of special note is the evening entitled “First Loves: Debut Novelists Alexie Loves” on Thurs., May 11, 2017 at Town Hall Seattle. Includes a conversation with Patricia Park, Ariel Schrag and Sunil Yapa. For tickets & information, go to

Congratulations to contemporary Indonesian writer Eka Kurniawan who is the winner of the 2016 FT/Oppenheimer Funds Emerging Voices Award. Within the past year, he had two novels – “Beauty Is A Wound and “Man Tiger” translated into English and published to glowing reviews.

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! –

“Women of Abstract Expressionism” (Denver Art Museum in association with Yale University Press) edited by Joan Marter with an introduction by Gwen F. Chanzit, Exhibiton Curator is a new book that serves as a catalog for a traveling exhibition that seeks to give renewed attention to the women artists in that American art movement. Although the exhibition only highlights the work of twelve of the women artists, the book encompasses more with reproductions and information on other women not represented in the show itself. In the essay entitled “The Advantages Of Obscurity – Women Abstract Expressionists in San Francisco” by Susan Landauer, the work of painters Bernice Bing and Emily Nakano is discussed. The only West Coast stop for this groundbreaking exhibition is the Palm Springs Art Museum, February – May, 2017.

“The Blind Photographer – 150 extraordinary photographs from around the world” (Princeton Architectural Press)  is a collection edited by Julian Rothenstein and Mel Gooding with an introduction by Candia McWilliam. These revelatory photographs suggest a deeper truth: that blindness is itself a kind of seeing, and that those who can see are often blind to the strangeness and beauty of the world around them. Includes work by Pragati, Pranav Lal, Satvir Jogi. Shivam Naik, Fahim Tamboli, Dharmarajan Iyer, and Rahul Shirat from India and Li Yan Shuang, Fu Gaoshan, Li Qi, Ma Tao and Jin Ling from China.

Anuradha Roy’s new novel “Sleeping on Jupiter” (Graywolf Press)  has three old women on their way to a seaside town who witness an assault on a young documentary filmmaker. Disturbed, they shrug off the encounter until all their lives intersect in the long, dark history of the place.

“The Kidney Hypothetical Or How To Ruin Your Life In Seven Days (Scholastic) by Lisa Yee  turns the classic stereotype of the straight “A” Asian American student going to an ivy league college success story on its head.

“Subversive Lives – A family History Of The Marcos Years” (Ohio University) by Susan F. Quimpo and Nathan Gilbert Quimpo is an oral history of the tumultuous years of resistance during the Marcos regime as personally witnessed by every member of a single family.

In “Ghost Month”, writer Ed Lin created a memorable character in Jing-nan, a guy who works in Taipei’s night market with a group of mis-fits. Now he’s back with a sequel entitled “Incensed – A Taipei Night Market Novel” (Soho). When the character’s gangster uncle asks Jing-nan to look after his troubled sixteen-year-old daughter, he and she get into more trouble than they bargained for.

In “Super Sushi Ramen Express – One Family’s Journey Through The Belly Of Japan” (Picador) by Michael Booth, the title says it all as he takes his family through a culinary journey throughout the country exploring its food and culture.

“Problems” (Coffee House Press)  by Jade Sharma tells the story of a young woman with a smart mouth, time to kill and a heroin habit that isn’t much fun anymore. How she tries to survive in New York when her life turns to chaos is the tale here.

National book Award-winning author Ha Jin is back with a new novel entitled “The Boat Rocker” (Pantheon). The story is about a Chinese expatriate internet reporter known for his exposes of Chinese Communist corruption. When his ex-wife, an unscrupulous novelist who becomes a pawn of the regime in order to realize her dreams of literary fame, he is assigned to take her down. But in doing so, he jeopardizes his life and career. Elliott Bay Book Company and Seattle Public Library bring him to the Central branch downtown on Friday, Nov. 4 at 7pm. 1000 4th Avenue.

As part of the “Made in Michigan Writers Series” comes a new volume of poetry by South Asian poet Zilka Joseph entitled “Sharp Blue search of Flame” (Wayne State University) that Linda Gregerson calls “Deeply felt and lushly rendered, these poems weave a tapestry of sorrow and celebration, tenderness and outrage, bodily longing and bodily vulnerability.”

“Filipino Studies – Palimpsests of Nation and Diaspora” (NYU) as edited by Martin F. Manalansan IV and Augusto F. Espiritu offers aup a collection of vibrant voices, critical perspectives, and provocative ideas about the cultural, political, and economic state of the Philippines and its diaspora and gives convincing evidence that the field of Philippine studies has come into its own. Includes an essay by UW Professor Rick Bonus.

“Justin Chin – Selected Works” (Manic D Press) edited by Jennifer Joseph. Chin was a queer Asian American poet  from Southeast Asia who found his home in the Bay Area. A legend for his spoken word performances, his poems found dualities  from the sacred to the profane, health to illness and hope to despair. He also  explored the experience of living with HIV which progressed into AIDS in his final years. With commentary and appreciations by fellow writers like R. Zamora Linmark, Timothy Liu, Michelle Tea  and many others.

“Dothead” (Knopf) is a new book of poems by Amit Majmudar. Don Patterson writes that his poems “reflect the uncomfortable complexity of the human animal. He has no hesitation in juxtaposing the serious and the grave, the base and the transcendent, and those acts of gentleness and brutality which define us, but his ability to turn on a dime will often have the reader laughing or shivering before he has a chance to prepare his defenses.”

“Blackacre” (Graywolf Press) is a new collection of poetry by Monica Youn already longlisted for the 2016 National Book Award For Poetry. The title refers to a term for a hypothetical plot of land. Youn uses that term to suggest landscape, legacy or what is allotted to each of us. This book fearlessly explores new territories of art, meaning, and feeling.

“The Attention Merchants – The Epic Scramble To Get Inside Our Heads” (Knopf) by Tim Wu looks at how the internet has absorbed and taken over our lives. Wu looks at this industry that works 24/7 at the capture and resale of human attention and how it grew into the defining industry of our time and at what cost to our personal lives.

In “100 Chinese Silences” (Les Figues Press), poet Timothy Yu uses his wicked humor to take on stereotypes of Asians in the media, Hollywood, popular culture and literature and skewers the Western representation of China and the Chinese.

Deepak Unnikrishnan’s “Temporary People” (Restless Books) won the “Restless Books Prize For New Immigrant Writing” and this book of stories is one of the first to look at the lives of foreign nationals in the United Arab Emirates who make up the 80 percent of the population, brought in to construct the towering monuments of urban wealth. This group works without the rights of citizenship, endures harsh working conditions and must eventually leave the country. This debut novel gives voice for the first time to these “guest workers” of the Gulf.

Respected Japanese literary scholar Donald Keene is out with a new book entitled “The First Modern Japanese – The Life of Ishikawa Takuboku” (Columbia) which looks at the short life of a Japanese poet who served as a pivotal figure  of modernity as Japan ushered itself into the 20th century.

9/11 completely changed the landscape of America but it also threw suspicion upon any Americans who remotely looked like they came from the Middle East or South Asia as possible terrorists or threats to national security raising again the specter of wrong-headed patriotism that threw Japanese Americans into internment camps during World War II. Two books address this issue head-on. “The 9/11 Generation – Youth, Rights, and Solidarity in the War on Terror” (NYU) by Sunaina Marr Maira looks at how young people from Muslim and Arab American communities born after 9/11 have forged political coalitions based on new racial and ethnic categories, even while under constant scrutiny and begun to fight for their civil and human rights as American citizens. “Brown Threat – Identification in the Security State” (University of Minnesota) by Kumarini Silva is a contemporary meditation on the issues of race in this post 9/11 era. He argues that “brown” is no longer just a cultural, ethnic or political identity but now after 9/11, the Patriot Act and wars in the Middle East has codified into a strategy of identification rife with xenophobic, imperialistic and racist ideologies to target those who do not fit neatly into ideas of nationhood.

“The Story Of A Brief Marriage” (Flatiron) is a  novel by Anuk Arudpragasam that captures intimate human emotions in the face of war. During the civil war in Sri Lanka, a young man in an evacuee camp is desperate to avoid conscription into the rebel army. Fate hands him an offer of escape when he gets an unexpected proposal from a stranger to marry his daughter. Poetic and philosophic, this slim novel is unafraid to look at issues of death,  war, life and love when everything else has been uprooted and torn asunder.

“Hurry Home Honey” (Burning Deck) is a new book of love poems by poet/translator Sawako Nakayasu collected over ten years. Craig Watson calls it “An extraordinary voice—“  and “A sense of youth that is marked by a hope, a sense of possibility.”

Internationally known Japanese crime novelist Keigo Higashino’s sweeping new novel entitled “Under the Midnight Sun” (Minotaur) looks back at a twenty-year old murder, two teenagers linked by the crime, and a detective’s obsession to finally uncover the truth. A complex, psychological story  that looks at crime and its reverberating after-effects.

“VIETNAM: A New History” (Basic Books)  by Christopher Goscha looks at the events that created the modern state of this country, forty years  after the end of the American war in Vietnam. The author examines the many ways Vietnam has historically been divided, and shows how Western colonialism was far from the only force bringing the country into the modern age.

“A Tibetan Grammar” (Burning Deck) by Benedicte Vilgrain as translated from the French by Keith Waldrop. Cole Swensen says this book “explores language from an almost architectural perspective, using the structure of Tibetan to examine how a language creates categories—and then immediately overflows them.”

“The Black Panthers – Portraits From An Un finished Revolution” (Nation Books) Edited by Bryan Shih and Yohuru Williams. In this book, photojournalist Bryan Shih and historian Yohuru Williams offer a reappraisal of the party’s history and legacy using portraits, interviews with surviving Panthers and illuminating essays by leading scholars to tell their unique story.


“The Human Jungle” (Chin Music Press) is a scathing look at China as it heads into the 21st century not fully cognizant of its own uncontrollable power in this new novel by Cho Chongnae.  The author is one of Korea’s accomplished writers and he sees China through the eyes of the immigrant. Another masterly  translation by Seattle couple, Bruce & Ju-Chan Fulton.

“Goze – Women, Musical Performance, and Visual Disability in Traditional Japan” (Oxford) by Gerald Groemer  looks at the tradition of blind women musicians who once roamed rural Japan and makes their story come alive.

“Slow Boat To China And Other Stories” (Columbia) by Ng Kim Chew as translated and edited by Carlos Rojas gives us a look at Malaysian Chinese literature today. The author observes issues of ethnicity, language, and culture and how they create both identity and conflict in the multiethnic world of Southeast Asia.

“Eve Out Of Her Ruins” (Deep Vellum) by Ananda Devi as translated from the French by Jeffrey Zuckerman gives us a rare look at the hidden life of an impoverished neighborhood in the capital of Mauritius and the hopes and dreams of this island nation.

“Meet Me at the Bamboo Table – Everyday Meals Everywhere” (Chin Music) by A. V. Crofts explores the intimate ritual of breaking bread and sharing food amongst strangers all over the world.

“Memorials To Shatterted Myths – Vietnam to 9/11” (Oxford) by Harriet F. Senie looks at how Americans today honor the loss of civilian life and what we make of memorials to those we lost.

“Ten Thousand Waves” (WingsPress)  by Wang Ping gives collective voice to the people of China, their cries of outrage, their wishes and their unfulfilled dreams.

The Idemitsu family and brand is well known in Japan as Shell Oil is in the West. Now comes a novel by Mako Idemitsu, daughter of that family entitled “White Elephant” (Chin Music) as translated by Julie Winters Carpenter. The story revolves around two sisters from an illustrious Japanese family who struggle to uphold the family legacy while maintaining their own identity as women on both coasts of America.

“Not A Self-Help Book – The Misadventures Of Marty Wu” (Shade Mountain Press) is a novel by Yi Shun Lai. When her career melts down in the states, a young woman returns to what she hopes will be the comforts and security of home in Taiwan only to find it isn’t easier there either. This is the journey of a woman who tries to balance familial expectations and her own creative dreams.

“A Japanese Name – An American Story” (Third Place Press) by Suma Yagi is a beautifully designed and illustrated volume of poetry by this  Seattle Nisei poet about the internment camp experience and how it affected her family. From the poem, “December, 1941” comes this opening stanza. “Our lives turned like a glass jar/flipped upside down, suffocating us./ Hairline cracks grew deep and wide/until the glass shattered and our world/ collapsed.” Go to for details.

“The Invisibility Cloak” (NYRB) is a comic novel by Ge Fei translated by Canaan Morse about an amiable loser just trying to survive in contemporary Beijing. Peppered with witty commentary and an emotional depth that will have you turning the pages as you root for the protagonist.

Joy Kogawa is one of Canada’s most revered novelists and “Gently To Nagasaki” (Caitlin Press) is her look back on a life and family filled with heartache, the history of internment, connections to Hiroshima/Nagasaki. She comes away from it all in the end, not bitter, but compassionate and forgiving.

“Bushido – The Soul Of The Samurai” (Shambhala) is a graphic novel taken from the book by Inazo Nitobe adapted by Sean Michael Wilson and illustrated by Akiko Shimojima.

“The Problem With Me And Other Essays About Making Trouble In China Today” (Simon & Schuster)  by Han Han collects the thoughts of one of China’s most popular bloggers. For the younger generation looking for a way to process today’s China, its culture and politics.

Montreal-based writer Madeleine Thien’s new novel “Do Not Say We Have Nothing” (Norton) was shortlisted for the ManBooker Prize and has received extensive praise in Canada. The book tells the epic story of a musical family through decades of modern Chinese history including the Tianamen Square protest of 1989. It will be released in the US in October of this year on Norton.

“Alice Iris Red Horse: Selected Poems” (New Directions) by Japanese avant-garde poet Gozo Yoshimasu as translated by Forest Gander comes out soon. The poet himself will do a series of readings in New York and the West Coast.

In “Geisha Of A Different Kind – Race and Sexuality in Gayasian America” (NYU Press) by C. Winter Han, the former editor of the International Examiner takes a sword to previously held stereotypes about beauty, nativity and desirability in the study of race and sexuality in Gay Asian America and sparks a new understanding of a unique identity.

“The Conjoined” by Jen Sookfong Lee tells the story of a foster mom whose death sets off a controversy. Her daughter discovers the bodies of two teenage Chinese Canadian sisters frozen in her mom’s freezer. Authorities had always assumed that they had run away. Re-opening the case, this taut thriller of a novel reveals the cracks in society’s social fabric based on family, class and race. This novel comes out on ECW Press of Toronto in Sept., 2016. Email is [email protected].

“Land Of Fish And Rice-Recipes from the Culinary Heart of China” (Norton) is the latest book on the cuisine of China’s Lower Yangtze region by award-winning China food specialist author Fuchsia Dunlop.

“Gendered Bodies – Toward A Women’s Visual Art In Contemporary China” (UH Press) is a new book by Shuqin Cui that zeroes in on the art of women artists in today’s China.

“Deep Singh Blue” (Unnamed Press) by Ranbir Singh Sidhu tells the story of a California teenager in a conservative California town  from an immigrant family who wants out. He falls in love with a married woman trapped in an abusive relationship. Coming of age is never easy.

“The Gun Room”(Bloomsbury) is the fourth novel by Georgina Harding about those who witness war and can’t forget it. A war photographer takes a classic shot of the Vietnam war only to flee and lose himself in the vastness of Tokyo. But history catches up with him, bringing the responsibility for the image he took.

“Not A Self-Help Book – The Misadventures of Marty Wu” (Shade Mountain Press) by Yi Shun Lai tells the story of a young women’s career meltdown in New York that sends her back to Taiwan and the comfort of relatives but even there, she finds herself in the middle of surprising family secrets that come out of the closet.

“PICTURE BRIDE – Stories” (UH Press) by Barbara F. Kawakami is like opening an old chest of family stories. An oral history  full of an earlier generation of courageous women who crossed the seas to marry strangers working in a harsh and unforgiving land.

“The Song Poet” (Metropolitan Books) by Kao Kalia Yang (“The Latehomecomer”) chronicles the life of her father, a poet who sacrifices his gift for his children’s future in a new land.

“The Translation of Love” (Doubleday) by Lynne Kutsukake is a debut novel that tells the story of a young woman who disappears in the middle of the American occupation of Tokyo after WWII and the younger sister who tries desperately to find her.

“We Gon’ Be Alright: Notes on Race and Resegregation” (Picador) is a new book of essays  by Jeff Chang (“Cant Stop, Won’t Stop”, “Who We Be”) arguing for an end to racially charged violence/discrimination and a plea for global open-mindedness to the struggle of the oppressed.

“Japanese American Ethnicity – In Search of Heritage and Homeland across Generations” (NYU Press) by  Takeyuki Tsuda looks at the notion of ‘ethnic heritage” through cross-generational lens.

“The Border of Paradise” (Unnamed Press) by Esme Weijun Wang tells the tale of a dysfunctional American family as they navigate the trials and tribulations of money, madness and their chaotic life on the road in Brooklyn, Taiwan and California.

Seattle playwright/writer/poet  Robert Francis Flor has a new book of poems based on his younger days working in the Alaskan canneries.  It is “Alaskero Memories” (Carayan Press). Go to for details.

“Where We Go When All We Were Is Gone” (Black Lawrence Press) is a new collection of short stories by Sequoia Nagamatsu that spins tales of modern Japan , pop culture icons and its ancient folklore into dreams to stir your imagination. Go to for more information on this writer.

“Striking Distance-Bruce Lee & The Dawn Of Martial Arts In America” (University of Nebraska) by Charles Russo is a new book drawing on hundreds of interviews that chronicles his time in the Bay Area and the thriving martial arts scene there in the 1960’s.

“Tropical Renditions – Making Musical Scenes in Filipino America” (Duke) by Christine Bacareza Balance continues the tradition of Filipino American scholars looking deep into their own contemporary musical traditions and culture.

“Radicalism in the Wilderness – International Contemporary and 1960s Art in Japan” (MIT) by Reiko Tomii explores the burst of energy in Japanese modern art in the 60’s and how it related to the world.

“The Fortunes” (HMH) by Peter Ho Davies due this fall is a new sly and witty collection of short stories exploring the lives of Chinese Americans throughout our tumultuous history here on Gold Mountain and beyond.

“Islands of Protest – Japanese Literature From Okinawa” (UH Press) is a crucial and much needed collection edited by Davinder L. Bhowmik and Steve Rabson that offers literary riches from that island nation in various forms such as poetry, fiction and drama showing what a vital and distinct culture it really is.

“The Future of Silence – Fiction by Korean Women” (Zephyr) is the latest translation by Seattle couple Bruce & Ju-Chan Fulton  that spans generations of writers from the 1970’s to the present as they grapple with day to day complex issues in Korean life and literature. Includes important writers such as O Chong-hui, the late Pak Wan-so and younger ones like Kim Sagwa, Han Yujkoo and Ch’on Un-yong. Again, another crucial contribution to the life of women in today’s Korea.

Krys Lee (“Drifting House”) is back with a searing novel entitled “How I Became A North Korean” (Viking) that tells the inner and outer journey of three characters who flee North Korea only to find themselves trying to survive in dangerous Chinese territory.

Vi Khi Nao is a double threat with two new books debuting in two different genres. Her novel “Fish in Exile” (Coffee House Press) examines how a family copes with the loss of a child. Her poetry collection “The Old Philosopher” (Nightboat Editions) won the 2014 Nightboat Poetry Prize.

“In Order To Live – A North Korean Girl’s Journey To Freedom” (Penguin) by Yeonmi Park with Maryanne Vollers is the latest in a series of memoirs by people fleeing North Korea. At the age of thirteen, she makes the perilous journey with her mother to South Korea after betrayal and being sold into sexual slavery in China. “Every Falling Star” (Amulet) by Sungju Lee & Susan McClelland tells the story of a  son from a military family who is forced to live on the streets after the mysterious relocation of his father to another city. He joins a dangerous street gang feared throughout North Korea to survive.

Jade Chang’s “The Wangs Vs. The World” (HMH) is her debut novel about an immigrant family who falls on hard times and takes a cross-country journey across America that brings them back together.

“BUSHIDO – The Soul Of A Samurai” (Shambhala) is a graphic novel from the book by Inazo Nitobe adapted by Sean Michael Wilson and illustrated by Akiko Shimojima.

“The Problem With Me And Other Essays About Making Trouble In China Today” (Simon & Schuster) by Han Han is by China’s most popular blogger with piquant essays on Chinese culture and politics.

“Great Fortune Dream – The Struggle And The Triumphs Of Chinese Settlers In Canada, 1858 – 1966” (Caitlin Press) is a groundbreaking book on the little known history of Chinese settlers in that region by David Chuenyan Lai & Guo Ding.

“A Greater Music” (Open Letter) by Hae Suah translated from the Korean by Deborah Smith is a novel about a young Korean woman writer in Berlin. A fall into an icy reiver triggers her memories of relationships living in that international German city.

“The Way Things Were” (Picador) is a novel by Aatish Taseer that tells the story of a young man who must return his exiled father’s body back to New Delhi where he must deal with an elite world he has worked hard to escape. Looks at one man’s struggle with his inheritance and the cultural schizophrenia of modern India.

Professor Hayao Kawai is the author and editor of over fifty books on religious and psychological themes and has spent most of his life immersed in both Western and Japanese culture. He has served as Minister of Culture for Japan. He figures in two new books. “Dreams, Myths and Fairy Tales in Japan” (Daimon Verlag) by Kawai  addreses Japanese culture insightfully, exploring the depths of the psyche from both Eastern and Western perspectives. In “Haruki Murakami goes to meet Hayao Kawai” (Daimon Verlag), the popular Japanese writer engages Kawai in conversation on universal issues.

“Hour Of The Ox” (Pitt) is a new book of poetry by Marci Galabretta Gancio-Bello which won the 2015 Donald Hall Prize For Poetry. This collection looks at a South Korean family and how it copes with the loss of a family member on an island. In spare, honest imagery, the poet reveals the pain of loss and the many ways of healing.

The Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Copenhagen has published a unique version of Hans Christian Andersen’s classic fairy tale.  “The Little Mermaid” as translated by Jean Hersholt is richly  illustrated in this volume by famed Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama. The art is taken from Kusama’s series “Love Forever” as well as a few brand new pictures done by the artist for the occasion.

“Maido – A Gaijin’s Guide To Japanese Gestures and Culture” (Schiffer Publishing) by Christy Colon Hasegawa looks at the body language that is as much part of Japanese communication as the words spoken. Done with entertaining color photos of everyday Japanese demonstrating the poses and gestures.

Tim Wu’s “The Attention Merchants – The Epic Scramble To Get Inside Our Heads” (Knopf ) explores in detail the history of those businesses who try to get inside our head for financial and political gain.

“Black Dragon River – A Journey Down the Amur River Between Russia and China” (Penguin Books)  tells the story of a river contested by various countries and a three-thousand mile journey by horseback, rail, and Jeep along the river’s length.

“Good Girls Marry Doctors – South Asian American Daughters on Obedience and Rebellion”  (Aunt Lute) is an anthology edited by Piyali Bhattacharya that tells honest stories from a diverse array of powerful women often hidden from the public eye.

“Ballpoint Art” (Laurence King Publishing) is an exciting new art book by Trent Moore that looks at the history of art created with the simple ballpoint pen and profiles some of the current practitioners of this  unique art form today. The artists come from all over the world and their styles/subjects are divergent and all encompassing considering the simple tool at their means. The work of artists Il Lee, Wai Pong Yu,  Joo Lee Kang, Noviadi Angkasapura, Yoshitomo Nara and Renato Orara are included with the work of many others in this fascinating volume.

The International Women’s Media Foundation gave a 2016 Courage in Journalism Award to Stella Paul, a freelance journalist in India, who has focused extensively on development issues such as gender-based violence and sex trafficking. Go to for details.

There are over 17,000 islands scattered across the Indian and Pacific oceans. Education in Indonesia is a struggle and resources and teachers in remote villages are hard to come by. Illiteracy remains a problem. Enter news journalist/author Muhammad Ridwan Alimuddin who combines his twin passions for books and boats by sailing between South Central and West Sulawesi in a boat loaded with books accumulated from donations. As he lands on shore, he lays out the books on mats and looks for villagers to announce his arrival. Excerpted from a story by BBC writer Theodora Sutcliffe.

Art News/Opportunities

The 1stAnnual Hing Hay Arts & Crafts Fair will feature over 30+ local API artisans is set for Dec. 10. If you’re a vendor and would like a booth, apply by Oct. 30, 2016. Go to A program of SCIDpda in collaboration with KulturaArts. If you have questions, email Rachta Danh at [email protected].

Artist Trust recently awarded a number of GAP grants to Northwest artists. David Jaewon Oh is a Seattle photographer working on documenting the lives of female boxers in the gym. Tacoma artist Lisa Kinoshita got one for her upcoming project with Susan Surface on an exhibit of photographs, sculpture and installation on the experience of Japanese immigrants as seen through the eyes of two contemporary Japanese Americans. Set for SOIL Gallery  in 2017.  Chicago raised artist Satpreet Kahlon got a grant to cover a residency at Twilight Gallery and  fund a show of over a hundred hand-piped porcelain vessels she created after collecting and compiling the oral histories of women of color. Kamla Kakaria received a grant to go to India and research the visual influences that permeate her work and check out the work of Indian artists working today. Tacoma artist , Beijing-born Qin Tan has a project where she looks at the accents, inflections and cadences found within sound performances by translating them into a visual format depicted by rhythm and movement. Sofia Lee is a Seattle-based visual artist and GIF journalist fascinated by consumer culture and the way electronics shape our lives. Her installation will explore contemporary global culture’s obsession with the aesthetics of “authenticity.”  MISS TANGO is a Chinese-born, first generation queer-identified, multi-media artist working on “New Queer Creation Mythos” based on the ancient myth of a brother-sister/husband-wife pair that are responsible for the creation of the world. Taiji Miyasaka was born and raised in the ancient city of Kyoto and now lives in Eastern Washington. He wants to discover spaces in Kyoto that have an intense relationship between light and darkness. Artist Lauren Iida will use the grant to take her stories and paper cutaway art and bring them to life through animation. Her project tells the story of Khmer culture which she hopes to show in the US and Cambodia. D.K. Pan is a multimedia artist who is working on “36 Views of The Sun: Meditations on Time, Hands, and Infinity” which is a photo project that investigates the temporary construction wall of the future rail station in the “U” District. He will use 36 convex mirrors  which utilize un-contracted Braille to spell out “Time Is Memory.”  Romson Regarde Bustillo is a Seattle-based world traveler and an inter disciplinary artist who works in printmaking, painting and installation and is active as a teaching artist. For his life in art & teaching he was given an award from SADA (Seattle Art Dealer’s Association). Congratulations to all! We look forward to seeing their future projects.

The Seattle Office of Arts & Culture in partnership with Seattle Department of Transportation seeks an artists from Oregon/WA to develop site-specific artwork and design elements for the Madison Street Bus Rapid Transit Project. The selected artist works with SDOT & SDOT consultants from design, through construction of the new BRT. Deadline is Mon., Nov. 7 at 11pm (PDT). For more info., call or email Maija McKnight at [email protected] or 206-684-7311.

The Asian American Women Artists Association has issued a call for entries from artists for a proposed exhibition entitled “Shifting Movements – Art Inspired By The Life Of Yuri Kochiyama (1921 – 2014).  For information,  go to On the website, push indicator on the category of “Programs” and then select “Exhibitions” and then select “Shifting Movements” for details. Deadline is Mon., Nov. 14, 2016 at 11:59pm (PST).

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. Go to FriendsOfAsianArt@earthlink or call (206) 522-5438.

Washington 129 is a projected anthology of poems to be written by Washingtonians. Deadline is Jan. 31, 2017. Go to for details.

Photographic Center Northwest issues a call for entries for their 21st Juried Exhibition with a deadline of Feb. 1, 2017. Juror is San Francisco Museum Of Modern Art Curator Emeritus Sandra Phillips. The exhibit takes place March 27 – June 11 in 2017.  For details, go to

The Wing presents their “Twilight Noodle Slurp Tours” throughout Nov., and Dec. Warm your soul and your belly with different kinds of noodles in the Chinatown-International District. Go to for details and to book online.

The Restless Books Prize for New Immigrant Writing is now accepting non-fiction submissions. Winner receives $10,000 and publication by Restless Books. Submissions accepted until Feb. 28, 2017. Go to for details.

The Gyeonggi International Ceramic Biennale 2017 Korea International Competition invites ceramic artists to send in submissions. Cash prizes and exhibition opportunities for winners. Preliminary screening starts Oct. 4 – 31,2016. For application, go to For more information, try

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