From August 25th to October 21st, 2014, SAAPRI co-sponsored a free photo and historical exhibit titled “South Asian American History, Culture, & Community” at University of Illinois at Chicago’s (UIC) Ward Gallery, located on the second floor of the Student Center East. The exhibit included two sections – historical text and images about local South Asian American immigrant communities and images submitted by UIC community and friends.
In conjunction and collaboration with the South Asian literature Kriti Festival, a Gallery Reception and Kick-Off of the festival also took place on September 25th, 2014. The opening reception featured the photographic diasporic history art exhibit and rapid-fire reading. Speakers included featured photographer Preston Merchant as well as the following readers: Fatimah Asghar, Sonali Dev, Anjali Mitter Duva, Syed Afzal Haider, Soniah Kamal, Parul Kaushik, Mina Khan, Neha Misra, Mary Anne Mohanraj, Rajdeep Paulus, Shakuntala Rajagopal, Phiroozeh Romer, Ankur Thakkar, Deepak Unnikrishnan, Vidhu Aggarwal, and Bishakh Som. SAAPRI’s Executive Director Ami Gandhi and Priya Uppuluri also spoke.
From stories of early immigrant desi women who deliberately wore saris everywhere in an attempt to elude racial discrimation, to images documenting birthday parties, first cars, and dance events, these photographs illustrate personal histories, and the larger South Asian diasporic storyMary Anne Mohanraj, Associate Coordinator, Asian and Asian American Studies, University of Illinois at Chicago and Executive Director, DesiLit.
Co-sponsors: UIC’s Asian American Resource and Cultural Center, Asian American Studies, Asian Studies, Campus Programs
Thank you to all those who attended our exhibit!