This summer, Maryland Middle School AALEADers braved the hot weather and went to the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History in Washington D.C. to visit an exhibit on race.
While the trip was a lot of fun for AALEADers, the exhibit covered many serious topics regarding race. While many students had endless amounts of questions about everything in the exhibit (for instance, one youth asked – “Hey! What’s skin pigmentation?), while others soaked in all of the information that was in the exhibit.
Race is definitely a subject that touches upon AALEAD’s very mission statement and purpose. It’s no surprise that many AALEADers took to heart all of the subjects covered in the exhibit, whether it was something complex like Carl Linnaeus’s development of the Linnaean taxonomy or the decorated lockers at the end of the exhibit depicting race.
Ultimately, the Smithsonian exhibit on race was definitely an informative yet fun exhibit for the Maryland middle school AALEADers. Thanks so much to the Smithsonian, Stephanie Chang, Gina Inocencio, and interns for showing us around the exhibit!
- What does a person’s appearance really tell you?
- AALEADers hard at work!
- Getting in close…
- AALEADers learning how the sun affects skin color
Then, on July 12, 2011, Executive Director Rosetta Lai, Development Director Rick Chen, and Board member Ban Tran attended a preview reception for the Portraiture Now: Asian American Portraits of Encounter exhibition, featuring unique works from 7 different Asian American artists across the country and around the world. Each work offers thought-provoking interpretations of the Asian American experience and representations against and beyond the stereotypes that have obscured the complexity of being Asian in America.
The reception included guests from similar-minded Asian community-based organizations. AALEAD also had the pleasure of meeting Konrad Ng, director of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program and Gina Inocencio, Smithsonian Program Specialist. After chatting, we were happy to learn how aligned our missions were and how our programs were both debunking Asian American stereotypes – one through art and the other through youth development. We look forward to our continued engagement with Smithsonian’s programs.
Rick Chen (middle) and Rosetta Lai (right)
network with Gina Inocencio at
the Portraiture Gallery.
The exhibit is open now through October 14, 2012. More information can be found here.