Cultural Work

//Cultural Work
Cultural Work 2019-07-10T23:02:44+00:00

By elevating members’ stories and connecting them to issues, APANO aims to advance a long-term cultural strategy to impact beliefs, actions and policies through centering the voices of those most impacted and silenced, resisting and shifting harmful narratives and ideas, and moving beyond defensive strategies to envisioning alternatives.

APANO believes that telling our stories, speaking truths, imagining alternatives and shifting social narratives matters as a strategy for cultural change, and as an area of emerging work, this strategy has captured the interest and excitement of our members. We are working to create a vibrant space where artists and communities are shifting perceptions and re-envisioning an equitable world through the tool of creative expression.

For information about APANO’s cultural work, contact Cultural Strategy Director, Candace Kita, at [email protected]

What is the Arts & Media Project (AMP)?
APANO’s Arts & Media Project (AMP) is a group of Asian and Pacific Islander artists and creatives that use art to advance social justice. AMP was formed in 2014, as part of APANO’s cultural organizing program. It has an active core of about 15-20 members as well as a larger collective membership of about 50 since its inception. Anyone who self-identifies as API and is interested in using art to advance APANO’s mission is welcome to join.
What does AMP do?
AMP‘s main activities are producing performances and events featuring API artists and artists of color and connecting API creatives to each other. AMP‘s flagship annual project is called the AMP Summer Series (formerly MicCheck!), a summer series of events, workshops, and performances that feature emerging and established Asian and Pacific Islander (API) artists from diverse mediums. You can read more about the AMP Summer Series and lineup here. The AMP Summer Series is planned and organized collaboratively, with curation, planning, and day-of logistics roles led by AMP members. We meet monthly to plan and implement the projects that we take on.
How can I get involved?
If you are interested in getting involved, contact Cultural Work Manager Candace Kita at [email protected] to learn more!

The AMP Summer Series 2019 (Formerly MicCheck!)
The AMP Summer Series (formerly 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 AMP Summer Series summer cultural event series focuses on the theme of PASSAGES, asking these important questions: The act of passage moves us through, under, over, and past something. Passage brings us from one place to another, impacting our relationships and the people who are part of our journey. Who came with you? Who do you carry with you? Who is next to you? Who is coming with you? What are we building together? Find the full lineup of AMP Summer Series programs here!

Why are now called the AMP Summer Series?
We are simplifying the name of our signature event series for ease of use to concisely reflect what we do (an event series) and when (during the summer). This new name also recognizes the group that spearheads the series, our APANO Arts & Media Project (AMP).

Why is the AMP Summer Series important?
The AMP Summer Series utilizes the arts to illuminate pressing issues faced by APIs and other communities of color. 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 the AMP Summer Series?
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 the AMP Summer Series! Contact Cultural Work Manager Candace Kita at [email protected] to learn more.

The Jade-Midway Creative Placemaking Projects are community engagement projects with the purpose of cultivating community building and consciousness raising of the residents that make up the Jade and Midway Districts. Projects are designed to create opportunities where community members and artists can work with local organizations and small businesses to develop a series of temporary performances, exhibitions, and installations, focusing on placemaking, social justice, economic development and community collaboration in order to challenge displacement and gentrification in the rapidly changing neighborhood.
Now in its 3rd year, the 2017 Cohort is drawn from artists who live and work in the Jade & Midway Districts.

We also work on special projects often commissioned and requested from the community for specific events or time periods. These projects cut across themes and medium. Past examples include: “We Carry Oceans” oral storytelling [Reproductive Rights], APANO Vote 2016 comics & voting guides [Civic Engagement], Oceans Rise artwork [Climate Justice], Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month values illustration, among others.