Departmental Events

Martin Wong’s Chinatown | Marci Kwon

Martin Wong, Chinese New Year's Parade, 1992-1994. Oil on linen, 84 x 120 1/2 in. ©Estate of Martin Wong. Collection of SFMOMA. Purchase, by exchange, through a fractional gift of Shirley Ross Davis.

12:00 pm | 4/29/2022 | 308A Doe Library | Until 1:30 pm | 4/29/2022

Marci Kwon, Assistant Professor of Art History, Stanford University

This lecture considers Martin Wong’s pictures of San Francisco Chinatown alongside the rich legacy of Asian American artists working in post-earthquake San Francisco Chinatown. For Wong and others, the neighborhood’s orientalizing architecture staged questions about the role of aesthetics and material culture in the construction of race, community, and cultural authenticity.  Ultimately, this lecture asks: What does it feel like to live within someone else’s fantasy?

Marci Kwon is Assistant Professor of Art History at Stanford University, and co-director of the Cantor Art Center’s Asian American Art Initiative. At Stanford, she is a faculty affiliate of Modern Thought and Literature, the Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity, Asian American Studies, American Studies, and Feminist and Gender Studies. She is the author of Enchantments: Joseph Cornell and American Modernism (Princeton, 2021), and her work has appeared in Third Text, Modernism/Modernity Print +, Panorama: Journal of the Association of Historians of American Art, and edited volumes on social art history, self-taught art, race and representation, and the early history of the Museum of Modern Art. She is presently working on a book-length project about art in San Francisco Chinatown, and co-editing a digital catalogue raisonné of the work of Martin Wong. She is the recipient of Stanfordʼs Asian American Teaching Prize, CCSRE Teaching Prize, Phi Beta Kappa Teaching Award, and the Women’s Faculty Forum Inspiring Early Career Academic Award.

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