MicCheck! 2018-08-17T00:46:51+00:00

MicCheck! 2018 is Here!

MicCheck! is a summer series of events, workshops, and performances that feature emerging and established Asian and Pacific Islander (API) artists from diverse mediums, including film, poetry, visual art, comedy, dance, and more. It is presented in tandem with the Jade International Night Market and aligned with APANO’s cultural work programs. This year’s MicCheck! summer cultural event series focuses on the theme of mental health, seeking to dismantle stigma around mental health through reflection, dialogue, and creative activities. Our event lineup this summer includes:

Queer APIs + Mental Health Roundtable
Wednesday, June 6 | 6pm-8pm | Taborspace, 5441 SE Belmont St, Portland, OR 97215
This panel and roundtable discussion will invite guest speakers to share thoughts on contemporary issues facing people who identify as queer and Asian Pacific Islander. How do we navigate API spaces as queer people? How do we navigate queer spaces as API people? What areas present conflict or othering, and how do they impact health and approaches to self-care? Participants will be encouraged to listen, reflect, and share experiences and resources as they are comfortable. In partnership with Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare.

Healing the Fractures: Writing from Deep Experience
Saturday, June 23 | 11:30am-3pm | Milepost 5, 850 NE 81st Ave, Portland, OR 97213
How do we overcome cultural silences around mental health in communities of color? How do we move away from the perception that we are broken and in need of fixing? Using generative writing exercises, we will mine memory, family history, and fractured narratives of the self to build writing practices rooted in compassion and imagination. Open to all levels of writers. Registration is required due to limited capacity.

Movie and Music in the Park: CAN + Joe Kye
Friday, July 20 | Music begins at 6:30pm and movie begins after dusk | Harrison Park, 2225 SE 87th Ave, Portland, OR 97216
What does it take to heal from mental illness? Join us for a free screening of CAN, a documentary film by Pearl J. Park. CAN tells the story of Can Truong, a Vietnam war refugee, whose diagnosis with depression and bipolar disorder as a college student leads him on healing journey that explores his identity, family, and history. The film will be preceded by a concert by Joe Kye, a violinist-looper, composer, and producer based in Portland. In partnership with Portland Parks and Recreation’s Summer Free for All series.

Astrology and Wellness for Radicals
Thursday, August 2 | 6pm-8pm | Midland Library, 805 SE 122nd Ave, Portland, OR 97233
How does astrology shape the stories that we tell about ourselves? Emerging astrologer Candace Kita will share how astrology supported her journey towards mental health and wellness. Plus, we will dive into the healing potential of each sign of the zodiac!

Mindfulness and Making Workshop
Sunday, August 12 | 1pm-3pm | Filipino-American Center, 8917 SE Stark St, Portland, OR 97216
This workshop will invite participants to use clay, sand, and paper to express our emotions, experiences, and identities and create validating, healing, and safe spaces within ourselves. Through meditative and connective artistic exploration, we will build solidarity while maintaining awareness of and presence our own feelings. This workshop will cultivate 1) a better understanding and connection with your inner self, 2) replicable tools and practices that will support you and your communities in maintaining mental wellbeing, and 3) increased awareness about the narratives that we harbor around mental health. No previous artistic experience required.

Sound > Silence: Overcoming Stigmas Around Mental Health Through the Power of Sound
Thursday, September 6 | 6pm-8pm | New Expressive Works, 810 SE Belmont St, Portland, OR 97214
Unit Souzou Co-Directors, Michelle Fujii and Toru Watanabe join violinist-looper Joe Kye to present a workshop using sound to combat the silence around mental health in API communities. Workshop participants will explore their personal relationships with mental health, investigate stigmas about mental wellness in API communities, and create soundscapes through looping and drumming in order to overcome the negative perceptions around such conversations. No musical background is necessary.

2nd Annual East Portland Arts & Literary Festival
Friday-Saturday, October 19-20 | All Day | PCC Southeast, 2305 SE 82nd Ave, Portland, OR 97216
Join us for our 2nd Annual East Portland Arts & Literary Festival honoring artists of color! The festival will feature interactive performances, workshops, a book and craft fair, kid-friendly activities, and more.

As MicCheck! events are volunteer-led, they are not a substitute for medical treatment. Find a growing list of additional resources on mental health care specifically for APIs here.

More About MicCheck!

Why is MicCheck! important?
MicCheck! utilizes the arts to illuminate pressing issues faced by APIs and other communities of color. “Mic check” is often used as a technique for organizers to unite the crowd at direct actions without using powered amplification and was popularized during the height of the occupy movement (read this The Nation article by Richard Kim for more context). Accordingly, the series amplifies voices of APIs whose stories are often silenced or unheard by engaging in community-relevant topics such as health equity, education, and interracial solidarity. The series brings community members and practicing API artists together, creates a bridge to share ideas, and rewrites dominant representations of APIs.

Who organizes MicCheck!?
The series is the annual flagship program of APANO’s Arts & Media Project (AMP), a group of APANO members who are interested in the intersection of art and social justice. The APANO Arts & Media Project empowers Asian and Pacific Islanders in the Portland Metropolitan area to engage with APANO’s mission and initiatives through creative methods. Utilizing a mix of traditional and nontraditional practices, we seek to elevate API stories and voices, develop confident arts and social justice leaders, and increase capacity for arts and media activism to thrive at APANO.

Get involved!
Do you identify as an API artist or creative? Are you passionate about creating art with community members? Do you believe that art and media activism can shift culture? We warmly welcome you to bring your talents, creativity, and/or extra set of hands to help organize MicCheck! Contact Cultural Work Manager Candace Kita at [email protected] to learn more.

Past MicCheck! Lineups

2017 Lineup

2016 Lineup