Sub-Genre: Ethnic Studies
Publisher: Minnesota Historical Society Press
Book theme: Asian American Studies
Street Date: November 15, 2018
Item Number (DPCI): 248-28-2105
"The stories we tell about ourselves are the persons we become. These narratives form our identities, and identity is malleable. Wing Young Huie is an exceptional artist, and anything he puts his heart, mind, and hands to is sure to be amazing. His latest work, Chinese-ness, is a gift not only to those of us of Chinese ancestry, but to anyone interested in finding new and expanded ways of re-creating ourselves and understanding others." Leslie Li, author of Daughter of Heaven: A Memoir with Earthly Recipes
"Wing Young Huie is as perceptive with his words as he is with his images. Chinese-ness is an essential document for exploring cultural identity in the twenty-first century. Herb Tam, Curator and Director of Exhibitions, Museum of Chinese in America
"This collection of words and pictures is authentic, compelling, and unique. China and America are the two great powers of our era. Ever the twain shall meet. Here is how. Anyone curious about this collision of cultures will see they can blend together." Frank H. Wu, author of Yellow: Race in America Beyond Black and White
The McKnight Foundation selected Wing Young Huie as the recipient of the 2018 McKnight Distinguished Artist Award.
"In this project, Huie turns the camera on himself for the first time. It was inspired by a 2010 visit to China, where he really felt the clash of cultures. He took it upon himself to investigate, exchanging clothes with a few Chinese men and imagining the life he might have lived if his parents hadn't left China.
'My American-ness, or non-Chinese-ness, seemed evident to all, not just in language, but also in my gait, attitude, dress, mannerisms, ' he writes in the book. Yet in America, he also felt an otherness, which is how he discovered his 'Chinese-ness, ' as he refers to it. 'My Minnesota-ness overwhelmed my Chinese-ness to the point that my own parents often seemed exotic and foreign to me.'
The book also includes stories and photographs of other Chinese-Americans living in Minnesota, and Chinese people he met in China." Star Tribune