“Do you have an American Dream?”

In the Chinese folktale, 衣錦還鄉 yi-jin-huan-xiang means to return home with the silken robe in glory. The exhibition documented the story of Mr. Zhao, a Chinese immigrant who promised himself and his wife that they will achieve a good life in 10 years. Living in a Single Residence Occupancy (SRO) did not limit Zhao from working hard toward his goal. He started by learning English from alphabet charts. By using his Chinese dialect, he created his own phonetic spellings to help himself in studying vocabulary. He worked hard every day and sought every opportunity to accomplish his dream. On May 11, 2016, Zhao finally visited his home in China for the first time after 3650 days of journey. The end of the gallery had an installation for the audience to get a realistic experience of Zhao’s living situation. The floor had a vinyl blueprint of his room. The walls are covered with his handwritten vocabulary boards and a projection of a documentary video.

衣錦還鄉/3650 received a tremendous amount of response from the crowd and through the media. The exhibition has successfully raised awareness for the Chinese immigrant community.

ORGANIZATION Chinese Culture Center
CURATOR Yajiao Maria Wang
DESIGNER Hsin Yi Amy Huang

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