Murals commissioned by The Minnesota Museum of American Art (The M) through a St. Paul Knight Arts Challenge and in partnership with the Hmong Museum.
Residency at The M in March and September 2017, resulting in a collaborative project working with Hmong American artists Xee Reiter, Christina Vang, Shoua Yang, Melissa Vang and Nicollazzi Xiong.
SAINT PAUL MURALS PROJECT
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Chaws Leeg (A Place's Veins)
2017, industrial tapes on window. The M, Pioneer Endicott Building, Saint Paul, USA. Solo installation by Vanghoua Anthony Vue.
Chaws leeg includes both directional and architectural mappings of my experience during the first residency in March. Often cited as the ‘Heart’ of Saint Paul, the Pioneer Endicott Building was also my place of residence during both leg of the project. Fittingly, these tape lines work metaphorically as the veins of this experience, representing the explorations that travelled out from this central site towards other places, spaces, and infrastructures that contribute to making Saint Paul the ‘heart’ of the Hmong Minnesotan, and perhaps also Hmong American community. Drawing on the memories of routes taken along with the architectural structures of these sites, these tape drawings converge, intersect, and weave together to form a visual recording of my experience.
Flows of Interconnected Motifs
2017, acrylic spray paint on wall. Jackson Parking Ramp, Saint Paul, USA.
Flows of Interconnected Motifs combine the symbolic work of the collaborating artists. Referencing issues of misrepresentation and ideas of visibility/invisibility, the coloured camouflage background sets the foundation upon which the collaborating artists have overlaid individual figures, symbolism, and compositions. Each work containing narratives within themselves, reflecting some of the complex and multifaceted experiences of Hmong Americans today. Much like the Mississippi River the wall faces, the experiences of Hmong Americans fluctuate and move in accordance with changes in place and time.
Faces of an Expanded Village
2017, acrylic spray paint and acrylic paint on canvas. 6" x 8". Executed on University Ave, Saint Paul, USA. On display within the AEDA
Initially conceptualised and intended as a mural on the walls of Hmong Village Shopping Center in Saint Paul. As a major shopping center geared towards the Twin Cities Hmong community, the center is abuzz daily with vendors and shoppers keen for goods, services, fresh produce and dishes from bustling kitchens. In addition, Hmong Village also contains the Hmong Leaders Exhibit Hall, a hallway lined with photographic portraits of past and present Hmong leaders in military, service, and politics. In synthesis with these portraits and the Hmong community at large, the faces in this work have been chosen by the artists involved, with each artist making their decision based on personal significance rather than Hmong historical or sociopolitical impact. The background of these portraits are also symbolic designs and compositions created by each artist in correlation with their chosen figure. Although these figures are only a miniscule selection of Hmong community members, it is hoped that the Hmong community in the Twin Cities and elsewhere can see themselves reflected, particularly those in the community whose faces and stories often go unseen and unheard of.