Struggle | Trauma | Pain
Bến Tre Province is known as the coconut paradise of Viet Nam. This is where my family calls home, despite living diasporically in Chicago for the past three decades. For a long time, my home was in constant disarray from warfare, martial law, and subjected to extreme defoliation from the mass spraying of Agent Orange by the U.S.
I’ve always been lost in the process of negotiating this duality and proximity to culture and identity. I find myself intrigued by how my personal identities are constantly transforming and re-shaping themselves relative to where I’m physically situated in the world. Because of the deeply rooted connections to Viet Nam and the U.S., my artwork is articulated through the themes of belonging and the fluidity of cultural difference and dispute. I begin my work with a confession to myself and draw inspiration from crucial moments in history. My intent is to honor the forgotten, expose corruption, create a voice for the unheard, and set a pathway for narratives that are, more often than not, silenced. I do this not only for the othered, but in order to validate and authenticate my own being.
I aim to introduce and reintroduce, claim and reclaim, define and redefine history as a way to heal and grow, not only for myself, but for my communities. Through research and analysis, oral history, living, struggle, and the use of culturally self-specific histories, my artwork seeks to convey these ideas in the most visceral way possible. Currently I find mixed-media, performative installation, and sculpture to be the forms that most powerfully articulate the concepts I’m working with.
My goal is to provide an understanding, a narrative, a truth, and a tangibility, to those who need it most. I do this because I can. I do this because others can’t.
Resilience | Rebellion | Liberation