Portraiture Now: Asian American Portraits of Encounter @ Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery

Roger Shimomura - Shimomura Crossing the Delaware
"Portraiture Now: Asian American Portraits of Encounter" features seven Asian American artists at the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery in Washington.

American Hello Kitty
Roger Shimomura

This showcase of contemporary Asian American portraiture offer representations against and beyond the stereotypes that have long obscured the complexity of being Asian in America.

The artists featured are CYJO, Hye Yeon Nam, Shizu Saldamando, Roger Shimomura, Satomi Shirai, Tam Tran and Zhang Chun Hong.

Roger Shimomura is a third-generation American of Japanese descent who deconstructs Asian American stereotypes through his art. As a painter, printmaker, and performance artist, Shimomura has focused particular attention on the experiences of Asian Americans and the challenges of being “different” in America.

Shizu Saldamando - Cat and Carme

Born in San Francisco, Shizu Saldamando blends references to youth subculture in Southern California with nods to her Japanese and Mexican heritage.

Other artists use concepts of diaspora, migration, and transnationalism to expand the meaning of their Asian American identity. Artists from Asia who work in the United States — like Satomi Shirai, who moved to New York City from Tokyo, or Hye Yeon Nam, who came to this country from Korea to study art, and CYJO, an artist currently based in China — regularly travel back and forth from Asia to the United States and craft unique portraits of encounter from their experiences.

Zhang Chun Hong - Three Graces triptych (Bo, Ling, and Hong Zhang)