Let's Eat! (a picnic) is a print installation and art object made up of 132 hand pulled and stitched copper etchings of hybridized Chinese American cuisine. These layered etchings are based upon annual celebrations of Chinese New Year with my adopted China group and a visit to San Francisco's Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Factory. The sizing of the final quilt-like structure is in reference to an standard American picnic blanket.
Let's Eat! (placemats) refer to Americanized Chinese food restaurant's placemats and the Chinese lunar calendar. These placemats mimic the Let’s Eat (a picnic)’s stitching. All of the placemats are considered monoprints, they are each fragile and one of a kind. The text from each placemat has intentionally been eliminated to force viewers to create their own definitions and traits for each animal and cycle. I see this work is in conversation with my other print installation, A COMPLETE CYCLE.
By appropriating Chinese motifs through an Americanized lens, my work challenges the notion naturalization and dissociation. It represents a disconnect and deprivation of direct ethnic Chinese culture. I see this work in conversation with Transplanted and my potential biological family living in China.
The Let's Eat! series was produced while in residence at Kala Art Institute in Berkeley California. A miniature version of Let's Eat! (a picnic) is now a part of Kala's permanent collection. This piece was also on display at Kala's Artist Annual (2019) in Berkeley, California.