University of Washington Assistant Professor of Communications LeiLani Nishime’s fall 2013 course on Race and Public Scholarship featured a tour of the War Baby Love Child: Mixed Race Asian American Art exhibition at the Wing LukeMuseum in Seattle’s International District and her students conducted interviews with six of the nineteen featured artists. The students created QR codes that link to the audio interviews which were posted in the exhibit near the entry. Check out these short podcasts from: Albert Chong, Kip Fulbeck, Jane Jin Kaisen, Lori Kay, Richard Lou, Gina Osterloh and Jennifer Wofford.

Artwork, audio, video provided by contributors to War Baby / Love Child: Mixed Race Asian American Art

Editor: Chris Naka
Producers: Laura Kina and Wei Ming Dariotis
Featuring excerpts of artist and author interviews with: Albert Chong, Wei Ming Dariotis, Serene Ford, Kip Fulbeck, Jane Jin Kaisen, Laura Kina, Richard Lou, Chris Naka, Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu, and Adrienne Pao.

On view at the Wing Luke Museum August 8, 2013-January 19, 2014. For more info visit:

Jenifer Wofford was born in San Francisco and raised in Hong Kong, Dubai and Kuala Lumpur. Her Filipina mother was born in Manila, and her European American father was born in California. Her parents met in Thailand, but didn’t date until both happened to move to San Francisco around the same time. The imagery in MacArthur Nurses is based on the famous staged photograph of General Douglas MacArthur “returning” to the Philippines in 1944 and alludes to the contemporary migration of Filipina nurses throughout theworld, especially to the United States.

Given my childhood moving around overseas, I would say that I identify as a ‘Third Culture’ kid as much as I do biracial.

On August 7, Laura Kina was interviewed by Tiffany Rae Reid for Mixed Race Radio.  Listen to the podcast below:


Artist Debra Yepa-Pappan presenting at the DePaul University Art Museum, May 29, 2013. Photo by Midori Aronson.

On Wednesday, May 29, 2013 from 6:00-8:00pm over 50 people joined us at the DePaul University Art Museum for a panel discussion with curator Laura Kina, author Camilla Fojas and artists Chris Naka and Debra Yepa-Pappan on “Mixed Race Asian American Art and Identity.” To view the panel video, click here.

Artists Chris Naka and Debra Yepa-Pappan with co-curator Laura Kina and contributing author Camilla Fojas, May 29, 2013. Photo by Midori Aronson.

Laura Kina is Vincent de Paul Associate Professor of Art, Media, and Design and a member of the Global Asian Studies program at DePaul University. She is a studio artist and the coeditor and curator of War Baby/Love Child: Mixed Race Asian American Art.

Camilla Fojas is Vincent de Paul Professor of Latin American and Latino Studies and a member of the Global Asian Studies program at DePaul University. Her books include Cosmopolitanism in the Americas, Border Bandits: Hollywood on the Southern Frontier, Mixed Race Hollywood, which she coedited with Mary Beltrán, and Transnational Crossroads: Remapping the Americas and the Pacific, which she coedited with Rudy P. Guevarra, Jr. Her most recent work is Pop Imperialism: Island Frontiers of the U.S. Imaginary.

Debra Yepa-Pappan is a Korean and Jemez Pueblo artist who utilizes digital imagery to visually share her story about being mixed race. She points out the similarities within her 2 cultures by incorporating symbolic imagery found in both, while keeping a contemporary and pop art aesthetic. Educated at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe and Columbia College in Chicago, her recent solo exhibition, Dual(ing) Identities, was featured at the Museum of Contemporary Native American Art (Santa Fe, NM, 2012). Her work is in collections of the Museum of Contemporary Native Art, Santa Fe, NM and the Schingoethe Center for Native American Cultures, Aurora, IL and has shown nationally and internationally, including the Ekaterinburg Museum of Fine Art, Ekaterinburg, Russia and the Mitchell Museum of the American Indian, Evanston, IL. Debra currently lives in her hometown of Chicago with her husband, artist Chris Pappan, and their 10 year old daughter, Ji Hae Yepa-Pappan.

Born in 1983, Chris Naka is a native of Chicago. His father is Sansei and was born in the Manzanar Relocation Center, a Japanese American internment camp, and his mother is a secular European American Jew. Chris is best known for his short animated videos that have been screened and exhibited nationally and internationally, including at the Museum of Contemporary Photography (Chicago, 2012), The Hyde Park Art Center (Chicago, 2011), and The Palazzo Papesse (Siena, 2007). He is co-director of the artist run gallery Julius Caesar and an avid long distance runner. Chris received his BFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2006, and his MFA from Northwestern University in 2011.

This event was co-sponsored by the Japanese American Service Committee, DePaul’s Office of Institutional Diversity and Equity President’s Diversity Series, and Latin American and Latino Studies.

If you didn’t get a chance to come to Mequitta Ahuja’s visiting artist lecture for “War Baby/Love Child” at the DePaul Art Museum on May 15, 2013, you can catch it on CAN TV. Tune in to cable channel CAN TV21 (or CAN TV19) in Chicago.

“War Baby/Love Child”: Mequitta Ahuja Artist Talk

Sunday, May 26th, 9:00 AM, Channel 21
Sunday, May 26th, 5:00 PM, Channel 19
Monday, May 27th, 8:00 AM, Channel 21
Monday, May 27th, 12:00 PM, Channel 19
Tuesday, May 28th, 9:30 AM, Channel 19
Tuesday, May 28th, 12:00 PM, Channel 21
Saturday, June 1st, 10:30 PM, Channel 21

Also, on CAN TV, catch a short:

Exhibition Tour “War Baby/Love Child”

Sunday, May 26th, 10:30 AM, Channel 21
Monday, May 27th, 9:30 AM, Channel 19
Tuesday, May 28th, 11:00 AM, Channel 19
Tuesday, May 28th, 1:30 PM, Channel 21
Monday, June 3rd, 11:00 AM, Channel 19

Mequitta Ahuja speaks at Depaul Art Museum on May 15, 2013

On Wednesday, May 15, 2013, War Baby / Love Child artist Mequitta Ahuja, who is featured on the book cover and exhibition promotional material, spoke about her practice as a painter and her strategy of “Automythography” (see her work at: at the DePaul University Art Museum.

Co-curator Laura Kina and artist Mequitta Ahuja with DePaul student and Art, Media, & Design faculty Bibiana Suarez, Annie Heckman, and Paulo Cabal, May 15, 2013.

CAN TV filmed the event and will air the entire lecture in the next few weeks. Stay tuned. In the meantime, check out Mequitta Ahuja and co-curator Laura Kina’s interview about the show and Mequitta’s work on Vocalo radio (90.7FM).

Mequitta Ahuja, Molly Adams, Laura Kina, Brian Babylon at the Vocalo studio May 16, 2013


Mequitta Ahuja at Vocalo radio (90.7FM)

Coeditors Wei Ming Dariotis and Laura Kina with friends at the University of Washington Press wine reception and book signing event at AAAS 2013.

On Friday, April 19, 2013, University of Washington Press hosted a wine reception and book signing for their authors at the Association for Asian American Studies Conference in Seattle, WA.

Wei Ming Dariotis and Laura Kina signing copies of War Baby / Love Child: Mixed Race Asian American Art (University of Washington Press, 2013). Photo courtesy of Ranjit D. Arab.

Coeditors Laura Kina and Wei Ming Dariotis also participated on a panel on Saturday, April 20, 2013, “Miscegenating Discourses: Critical Contexts for Mixed Race Asian American Art” featuring presentations by artists/activists Richard A. Lou (University of Memphis), “Los Anthropolocos Unearth the White Empire,” and Stuart Gaffney (University of California, San Francisco) “Loving the Day: Images of Marriage Equality Then and Now.”

Stuart Gaffney, Wei Ming Dariotis, Laura Kina, Richard A. Lou after their panel presentation at AAAS 2013. Photo courtesy of Wei Ming Dariotis.

DePaul University Office of Public Relations and Communication
May 16, 2013

Jane Jin Kaisen (b. 1980)
The Woman, the Orphan, and the Tiger, 2010
Single-channel video, DVCPRO 720p
75 min
By Jane Jin Kaisen in collaboration with Guston Sondin-Kung. Main contributors to the film: Grace M. Cho, Jane Jeong Trenka, Jennifer Kwon Dobbs, Maja Lee Langvad, Soni Kum, Tammy Chu, Nathalie-Mihee Lemoine, Nu Young Nim, Pak Chun Sung, Myung Ki Suk, Rachel, Isabel.
Courtesy of the artist

The film exposes how military and patriarchal violence against women and children became central in international geopolitical negotiations. It creates a strategic genealogy between three generations of women: the former comfort women who were subjected to sexual slavery by the Japanese military, women who have been sex workers around U.S. military bases in South Korea, and South Korean international adoptees.

Jane Jin Kaisen is a visual artist born in South Korea and adopted to Denmark in 1980. She has an MFA from The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts and the University of California Los Angeles and is a Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study Program alumni. Working in a project-based manner within the mediums of film, performance, and writing, she creates multi-layered narratives that seek to renegotiate representations of memory, history, and transnational subjectivity. Kaisen has exhibited her works and screened her films in various contexts in the United States, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. Beyond her individual artistic practice, she is part of the artist collective itinerant_sends_for_itinerant with Guston Sondin-Kung.

Gina Osterloh (b. 1973)
Rapture, from the Somewhere Tropical series, 2006
LightJet photograph
36 x 40 in.
Private collection

Everyone says, ‘You must be an army baby.’ My mom actually emigrated from Cebu, Philippines, to Guatemala first … She had already gotten her graduate degree in the Philippines, but it didn’t count in the States at the time.—Gina Osterloh

Gina Osterloh is the daughter of a German American father and a mother from the Philippines who met in graduate school. Somewhere Tropical, a series of staged photographs rendering “unreadable” the figure of the artist, negotiates the relationship between 2-dimensional and 3-dimensional space and references concealed identities and notions of “passing,” clichéd tourist images of the tropics, war, war films, and her mother’s family history during WWII.

Albert Chong (b. 1958)
Portrait of the Artist as a Victim of Colonial Mentality, 1979/2010, 2010
Photo transfer on marble tiles
48 x 48 in.
Courtesy of the artist

I don’t think you can say anything meaningful with abstraction, period. There’s no way of doing the narrative; it needs representation to communicate — Albert Chong

Albert Chong’s grandfathers were Chinese and his grandmothers were Black Jamaican, and he was raised in Jamaica until he moved to New York at age nineteen. His 1979 photo, Portrait of the Artist as a Victim of Colonial Mentality, was staged with symbols of colonial oppression, and re-imagined in 2010 transferred onto marble tiles, perhaps symbolizing a solidity of presence often denied to the Black Chinese of Chong’s parents’ generation in Jamaica.

“Dream Region” by Mequitta Ahuja (2009)

Mequitta Ahuja (b. 1976)
Dream Region, 2009
Oil, enamel, acrylic, and waxy chalk on paper
78 x 104 in.
Collection of Alyssa and Gregory Shannon

Mequitta Ahuja, whose parents hail from Cincinnati and New Delhi, deploys her own image as ‘surface’ for ideas about painting, while extending her personal identity into wider cultural landscapes.—John Ewing

I identify as ethnically mixed, as Indian, as South Asian, as Black, as African American. I use all of these terms to identify myself.—Mequitta Ahuja

Through my work, I feel I can have relationships with each group on my own terms.—Mequitta Ahuja

Mequitta Ahuja received her MFA from UIC in 2003, mentored by Kerry James Marshall. Mequitta has had solo exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago’s 12X12, Lawndale Art Center in Houston, TX, BravinLee Programs in New York and Galerie Nathalie Obadia in Paris, France. Group exhibitions include: Global Feminisms at the Brooklyn Museum, Houston Collects African American Art at the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Poets and Painters at the Ulrich Museum in Wichita, KS, Portraiture Now at the National Portrait Gallery and Usable Pasts at the Studio Museum in Harlem. Mequitta’s work has appeared in Modern Painters, March 2007 and Art News, February 2007. In February, 2010, Mequitta was profiled as an “Artist to Watch” in ArtNews. Holland Cotter, art critic of the New York Times, in his “last chance” article in the June 1, 2007 edition of the Times, sighting Mequitta’s NY debut exhibition Encounters, stated “Referring to the artist’s African-American and East Indian background, the pictures turn marginality into a regal condition.”

Mequitta received a 2011 Tiffany Foundation Award, a 2009 Joan Mitchell Award and a 2008 Houston Artadia Prize. Mequitta was a 2009-2010 artist-in-residence at the Studio Museum in Harlem and the 2011-2012 Stewart McMillan artist-in-residence at Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA). Mequitta is represented in Europe by Galerie Nathalie Obadia.