The Art of migration
Within the 15 days celebration for Chinese New Year I turn my thoughts to how I came to be in Britain, and the publishing of my first Tedx Talk. I was born here although migration is in my family history and not just my fathers, my paternal grandparents who had already migrated from China to Malaysia where I could so easily have been born albeit a few months. A window into those early times may have mirrored some of the current experiences of migrants to Britain. Artist John Akomfrah has just been awarded the Artes Mundi prize for his award winning film Auto Da Fe which translates as ‘acts of faith’ and deals with issues of racism, migration and religious persecution.
In 2012 I was invited by photographer Mike Tsang to write the afterword for his exhibition catalogue Between East & West, which celebrated the heritage, identity and aspirations of British Born Chinese:
British Chinese celebrated in the exhibition were architects, musicians, police, solicitors, bakery owners, medical students, researchers and even an Elvis impersonator! Migration brings many riches of talent, personality to any country and in Sheffield is a contemporary focus with photographers like Jeremy Abrahams holding his exhibition Arrivals in Weston Park Museum that felt like visiting friends. I knew many of the Sheffield faces in a city that now feels like my hometown. Artist Annie Mays Anthony in the exhibition is also holding her own exhibition 'All Clothing tells a story' at the Circle on until March 2017 that supports the Sheffield Conservation club for refugees and asylum seekers.