We’re in for a special one this May as we partner with Soul of Chinatown – a not-for-profit group fighting for the survival of Sydney’s Chinatown. They’re curating their very own group exhibition Our Chinatown, featuring six Asian-Australian artists.
As part of this month’s exhibition launch, we’re delighted to host Soul of Chinatown’s first major fundraising event on Tuesday 3 May 2022. Details and tickets available for purchase HERE
Soul of Chinatown is a not-for-profit group that preserves the culture, history and tradition of Sydney’s Chinatown and its community, but also looks to the future.
Founded by Hayden Wong, Kevin Cheng and Peter Wong in 2021, Soul of Chinatown aims to inspire and foster positive change in Chinatown through advocacy, community and storytelling. They have brought the stories of the Chinatown community to life – from people who would never have their stories told by mainstream media – by telling their stories in their own words.
Soul of Chinatown also created its Rice Fund during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021 to support the vulnerable and disadvantaged – especially elderly Chinese-Australians that rely on Chinatown but who have faced increasing isolation. Soul of Chinatown raised funds to support Chinatown businesses in creating and donating culturally-appropriate food hampers for disadvantaged and elderly communities in inner Sydney and beyond.
Find them on Instagram @soulofchinatown
Curated by Soul of Chinatown, Our Chinatown is a celebration of Sydney’s Chinatown which has a long and rich history for Chinese-Australians and all Sydneysiders. Featuring six Asian-Australian artists from different backgrounds, Our Chinatown explores the connection that the artists have to their own identity and Chinatown, and how the future of the historic area depends on the next generation.
CHRIS YEE is a Sydney-based artist, working illustrator, designer and animator specialising in traditional “pen and paper” methodologies. He believes in the power of character and storytelling and is heavily drawn to constructing narratives ranging from the humorous to the monstrous and macabre. Growing up in 90’s Ryde, amongst the strong communities of Eastwood, he is a proud member of the evolving Asian-Australian creative identity.
ANDREW YEE is a multidisciplinary artist working across illustration, video, installation and podcasting. Yee’s formative years spent in Sydney’s East Ryde district created a disconnect with his surroundings, searching for his identity through a consumption of 2000s manga, pro-wrestling, the spectacle of K-pop and the emotional draw of music. His visual practice offers a meditative glimpse into concepts of personal identity and emotions often crafted through imaginative narrative forms presented in an idiosyncratic, surreal and comic- inspired style.
PEI-WEN KWANG is a Sydney-based designer and illustrator who works in both the digital space as well as with traditional mediums such as Posca and Gouache. Pei’s work is rich with detail, colour, texture, and strong narratives. Motivated by a desire for storytelling, Pei’s art is filled with characters in whimsical settings. Pei also finds influence from her Malaysian Chinese roots and later upbringing in Australia.
DEREK LAU is a designer and animator who specialises in motion graphics for commercial advertising. Outside of work, he enjoys exploring new techniques for personal illustrations and projects, inspired by photography, film and architecture. Recently, his personal work has been more directly influenced by Asian culture and perspectives as well as his own experiences.
AMELIA TRAN-BENCIO is a calligrapher and founder of TRANLIAGRAPHY. Amelia is a bubble milk tea connoisseur who promotes language and culture preservation, while helping millennials bridge generation gaps meaningfully and creatively through Chinese calligraphy. Like millions of other kids, she grew up incredibly confused with a Vietnamese surname, but is Australian-born Chinese. Amelia has collaborated with brands including Prada, Tiffany & Co, Fendi, Dior, ALAND, Westfield and Twitter in providing professional Chinese calligraphy services.
JOHN PUAH is a photographer, visual storyteller and Co-Founder of Jasper Avenue. JP grew up in Kuala Lumpur and moved to Australia in 2000 to attend university. He graduated with a degree in engineering, but food was always the dream. He left his professional career to buy the Glebe café Well Co. and dove head first in to the fast-paced countertop café world. His desire to continuously document visually-woven stories was a natural step towards co-founding Jasper Avenue.
Our Chinatown, curated by Soul of Chinatown, runs from 3-28 May 2022, Tuesday to Saturdays from 4pm. Join us for opening night with the artists and founders of Soul of Chinatown at their fundraising event Our Chinatown – details and tickets available for purchase HERE