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Jorgensen Gallery

Asian Threads, American Weave: Photographs by Corky Lee


Opening Reception

Thurs, Feb 8, 5:00 - 7:00 pm

Exhibit Dates

Feb 8 - Apr 30, 2018
Mon - Fri, 10 am - 4 pm, and prior to most performances


Jorgensen Gallery

Jorgensen Center for the Performing Arts
2132 Hillside Road
On the UConn campus in storrs, CT


Corky Lee is a self-taught, independent, freelance photographer who has been documenting the Asian American community for the last 46 years. He is often referred to as the "Undisputed, Unofficial Asian American Photographer Laureate." An "ABC" (American Born Chinese) raised in New York City, he began chronicling the local Chinese American community in 1971 to provide the public with an in-depth look into the daily lives and struggles of the then burgeoning gateway immigrant population.

From quiet "day in the life" images to iconic photographs of the struggle for civil rights. Mr. Lee seeks to document the stories that escape the attention of mainstream society and media. He considers his images to be "acts of photographic justice" and has used them to rectify omissions in our nation's history books. In one celebrated 2014 photograph, Mr. Lee, recognizing that Chinese laborers were excluded from most historic photos of the building of the transcontinental railroad, organized a "flash mob" of over 200 fellow Asian Americans to stand in front of two 19th century locomotives. Six of the participants were descendants of Chinese laborers. This event has now become an annual pilgrimage to the site during Asian Pacific American Heritage Month.

His photographs have appeared in mainstream media publications such as the Associated Press, New York Times, New York Post and The Villager. He has been an artist-in-residence at Light Work, Syracuse University, Asian American Studies Institute at NYU, as well as a Regents Scholar at UCLA. His photographs are featured in the collections of numerous museums and institutions, including the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, NY Historical Society, the Chinese Historical Society of America in San Francisco, the Chinese American Museum of Los Angeles, Museum of Chinese in America, NYC, and the Beijing National Museum of Overseas Chinese. He continues to change public perceptions of Asian Americans one image at a time. 

Sponsored by The UConn Asian American Cultural Center and The Asian American Studies Institute