We invite you come to join a celebration of San Francisco Chinatown Keywords School completion, and the unveiling of the mural resulted from the students findings. This art project art engages young immigrants’ dialogues under the mentorship of contemporary artist Xu Tan to energize the transformation of a community through a year-round aesthetic education. Funded by Arts & Communities: Innovative Partnerships (ACIP) of San Francisco Arts Commission (SFAC).
We will start in front of the mural on Wentworth Alley by Jackson, then we will walk over to 41 Ross Alley, the Keywords School to hear the students’ discussion, and followed by the screening of “From Jean-Paul Sartre to Teresa Teng: Cantonese Contemporary Art in the 1980s,” a documentary that the lead artist Xu Tan took part in. Working with the Chinese Culture Foundation of San Francisco (CCF) and Chinatown Community Development Center (CCDC) over the course of 2013-2014, Xu Tan creates a participatory workshop for 10 youth participants to create and collect “keywords” from the community daily life. The Keywords youth generated will be incorporated into a mural at Wentworth Alley, created by local Chinese American artist Justin Hoover.
Inspired by the famous story of “Borrowing Arrows with Boats” in the Chinese classical novel “the Three Kingdoms”, students’ keywords follow the trajectory of the arrows, and turn into roses flowing to the boat, a resemblance of the Asian fishing junk. This is the idea of sharing findings, with reference to “贈人玫瑰，手有餘香 The fragrance always stays in the hand that gives the rose.” (Hada Bejar, 1640-1689 British Playwright Poet). An archive of this project published in “41 Ross Dictionary” from San Francisco Chinatown Keywords School. For the first time, Organizations, artists, youth, property owners, merchants come together for culture production. This is the starting of CCF and CCDC’s joint vision of turning Chinatown into an open art and cultural museum without walls.
About Xu Tan:
Xu Tan was born in 1957, China and currently lives in both China and the United States. His work has been shown around the world, including at the 50th Biennale di Venezia, the Berlin Biennial, the Guangdong Triennial etc.
See TVB coverage on Celebration and Keywords Mural