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Museum of Chinese in America reopens featuring anti-AAPI hate exhibition

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, July 16, 2021
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The Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) in New York City was reopened for the public on Thursday after over a year of closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic and serious fire damage to its collections.

MOCA also unveiled a new original exhibition detailing the history of anti-Asian and Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) hate.

Named as "Responses: Asian American voices resisting the tides of racism", the exhibition is the culmination of MOCA's yearlong special collection initiative that welcomed submissions of creative, artistic, and public responses to the tumultuous events in 2020 and 2021.

The exhibition will offer an immersive experience and space for reflection, empowerment, and action by inviting guests to leave their own responses as new platforms for understanding and education, said MOCA in a release.

With specially commissioned murals, the exhibition features a comprehensive timeline on the gallery's perimeter walls that traces 200 years of racism against AAPI, culminating with an expanded look at the past year's spike in anti-AAPI violence.

At the heart of the exhibition are the artwork, multimedia, and material objects submitted by the public through MOCA's special collection initiative.

The exhibition will run through the middle of September and the museum will be free of admission for all until the end of the thematic exhibition.

"Arts and cultural organizations in New York City and around the world wondered if they would ever see a reopening. To welcome visitors back into MOCA's space, at this important time when heightened racism toward AAPIs is rampant, is both a responsibility and an opportunity," said Nancy Yao Maasbach, president of MOCA.

"The responses we've been gathering from the public since the early days of the pandemic offer a collective reckoning and call to action on the pressing issues facing the AAPI community today: hysteria of medical scapegoating, fear of violence against our elders, and solidarity with broader racial justice movements," said Herb Tam, curator and director of exhibitions with MOCA.

Tam added that this exhibition contextualizes today's responses within a long, dark history of anti-AAPI hate.

Founded in 1980, MOCA is dedicated to preserving and presenting the history, culture and diverse experiences of people of Chinese descent in the United States. 

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