Exploring ‘Lantern Stories’ in Boston’s Chinatown
Lantern Stories celebrates Boston Chinatown’s vibrant community. Commissioned by the Greenway Conservancy, artist Yu-Wen Wu created thirty one lanterns to illuminate Boston Chinatown’s history, culture and resiliency. The images on the lanterns relate the long and fraught history of Chinese immigration in the United States, and celebrate Boston Chinatown’s culture and community. Highlighting the arts, calligraphy, music and performance, as well as the community’s strong commitment to education, entrepreneurship, and social justice, these lanterns hold the experience and stories of the community, past and present.
Lantern Stories was created with the hope that each lantern initiates the desire to learn more about the history of Asian immigration to the United States and the social and justice issues faced on multiple levels. The project involved a process of community engagements, intensive historical research, drawings, and the design of the three dimensional lantern forms and artistic templates, specific to the site. Explore the detailed images and stories of each lantern according to categories of History, Activism, Entrepreneurship, People (Life) and the Arts.
HISTORY / 歷史
From the ancient Silk Road (est. first century BCE) to the first trade ships launched in 1405 exchanging goods between locations such as India, the Middle East and East Africa, China has long been a champion of foreign trade. The historical ship pictured here is Taeping, the clipper ship (a fast-speed merchant sailing vessel carrying cargoes of tea) which was victorious in the Great Tea Race of 1866 from China to London. It was the ship Pallas which arrived in Baltimore, MD in 1785 that carried the earliest documented Chinese immigrants to the United States. Afterwards, Chinese immigration saw mid-century fluxes with the advent of the California Gold Rush in 1848 and with the passage of the Burlingame Treaty in 1868, which permitted Chinese and Europeans alike to immigrate between their country of origin. As a result, an estimated 322,000 Chinese workers arrived between 1850-1882.
This series of images centers on Chinese miners who are shown carrying yokes, rockers, pickaxes, and shovels. These men, solitary sojourners, were the first people of China to immigrate to the United States in large numbers. They came for the purpose of mining gold during the California Gold Rush (1848-1855) amid China’s economic and political instability at the time, but were met with much hostility upon arrival. Those who stayed after the Gold Rush were hired to work on the Pacific portion of the Transcontinental Railroad (see map on lantern). The construction would not have been completed in 1849 if it were not for the labor of an estimated 20,000 Chinese workers, who toiled tirelessly in dangerous conditions for five years and made 30-50% lower wages than white railroad workers.
Amid the 1850’s Gold Rush and scarce job market, American settlers felt threatened by the incoming Chinese labor force and made many attempts to prevent their settlement. Most famously, the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act indefinitely banned immigration from China. To this day, it is the only U.S. law ever implemented to ban the immigration of a specific ethnic/national group. The Act was repealed in 1943, reopening immigration and permitting Chinese settlers to apply for citizenship. Such systematic acts of racism, coupled with personal and daily struggles with sinophobia, drove Chinese-Americans to build their own “ethnic enclaves,” or Chinatowns, across the country.
Inspired by the 1960s civil rights movement, the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act passed in order to discourage discrimination against Asian immigration, reunite immigrant families, and attract skilled labor to the United States. This Act would have a significant impact on the future demographic makeup of the American population, which prior to the act’s passage was monitored by ethnic quotas enforced by the National Origins Formula.
Following the Transcontinental Railroad’s completion, many Chinese immigrants moved East in search of work and of solace from the rising sinophobia pervading California and the West. In 1870 in North Adams, MA—a major center for early American industry—The Sampson Shoe Factory employed the earliest known cohort of Massachusetts-based Chinese immigrants. They were hired by Calvin T. Sampson in order to quell a massive labor strike led by his former workers (mostly Irish and Canadian immigrants), who were very hostile toward the Chinese workers. Increasingly excluded from jobs in the manufacturing and construction industries, most of the Chinese opened laundries in the rapidly industrializing towns and cities around Massachusetts and the New England area. It is many of these workers who founded what has become Boston’s Chinatown.
Chinatown’s three-to-four story row houses hold dual significance. On one hand, they are the admirable structures that once housed the pioneering Chinese working class along with other immigrants. On the other, they have become a symbol of one of the most drastic acts of Chinatown’s destruction and subsequent gentrification. The 1962 expansion of the Massachusetts Turnpike reduced many of these homes to rubble, displacing thousands of families (including Syrian immigrants) to the outskirts of town and destroying half of the total residential Chinatown neighborhood. This particular row house, sourced from a photograph dating to approximately 1963, was located at 116 Hudson Street.
唐人街的三至四層樓高的排屋具有雙重意義。 一方面，它們是令人欽佩的建築，曾為開創性的中國工人階級和其他移民提供住所。另一方面，它們已成為損毀唐人街最激烈的行為之一及隨後的中產階級化的象徵。1962年，馬薩諸塞州收費公路的擴建使許多排屋淪為廢墟，使成千上萬的家庭（包括敘利亞移民）流離到城鎮郊區，並摧毀了一半的唐人街住宅區。 這座排屋位於哈德遜街116號，其照片可追溯至1963年左右。
ACTIVISM / 行動主義
This two-tier lantern highlights Boston Chinatown’s history of displacement and protest. The bottom lantern memorializes the 700 Hudson Street homes demolished in the 1950s West End urban renewal project, causing the displacement of 2,700 Chinese and other immigrant families to outskirt areas. Also demolished was the Scollay Square red-light district, causing its residents to relocate in-and-around the neighboring district of Chinatown. Later in 1974, the city of Boston designated this new concentration of adult entertainment as its official red-light district: the Combat Zone. All the while expanding into Chinatown, the Combat Zone saw increasing sex work, drug use, and crime into the 1980s, limiting the housing and business opportunities of Chinatown’s immigrant population and attracting unwelcome visitors to the formerly family neighborhood. Pictured in the top lantern are Chinatown residents in the 1980s engaging in peaceful protests to halt the Combat Zone’s encroachment and drive out the sex trade from their longtime home.
Displacement remains a major issue in the gentrification of modern day Chinatown, causing financial and health stresses, identity challenges, and decreased access to resources. In a contrasting moment of triumph, the bottom lantern’s center photograph shows Governor Herter signing a Chinatown-led petition to reroute the 1954 Central Artery highway project to Chinatown’s perimeter (rather than through its center), effectively saving the Chinese Merchants Association (pictured) and other community institutions from demolition. Since Chinatown’s early days, organizations such as the Chinese Progressive Association, Asian Community Development Corporation, and Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center have stepped up to fight for immigrant and workers rights, affordable housing, and resident priorities.
流離失所仍然是當今唐人街中產階級化的一個主要問題，造成了財務和健康壓力、身份挑戰以及資源獲取的減少。 在與眾不同的勝利時刻，底部燈籠的中央照片顯示，赫特州長簽署了由唐人街主導的請願書，將1954年中央動脈高速公路項目改道至唐人街周邊（而不是通過其中心），有效地拯救了安良工商會（如圖）和 其他社區機構免於拆遷。自唐人街成立以來，華人前進會、亞美社區發展協會和波士頓華埠社區中心等組織已加緊努力，爭取移民和工人權利、經濟適用房和居民優先事項。
The Asian-American community have been active participants in civil rights and social justice protests throughout the 1900s to the current moment. The term “Chinese virus” is the latest brand of xenophobia and sinophobia amid the COVID-19 pandemic, prompted by the misconception that individuals of Asian (and especially Chinese) descent are more likely to carry and spread the virus due to its early detection in China. “Fight the Virus, Not the People” (pictured) is a protest cry and attempt to dispel the resulting harassment, prejudice, and violence for Asian individuals of every descent, and to divert such negative hypervisibility toward productive means of combating the virus.
Another protest cry pictured is “Justice for Vincent Chin.” Chin was a young Chinese-American man who was beaten to death by two disgruntled, white auto workers, Ronald Ebens & Michael Nitz, in Highland Park, Michigan in 1982. The men wrongly assumed Chin to be of Japanese descent, this being the only reason for his fatal beating. Ebens and Nitz were convicted but, atrociously, ordered no jail time: only a $3,000 fine. Similar tragedies and insufficient acquittals/charges have necessitated the sustained momentum of today’s Black Lives Matter movement. From the civil rights movement of the 1960s to the present day, the Asian-American community stands in solidarity with their Black sisters and brothers.
圖中的另一個抗議口號是“為陳果仁伸張正義”。陳是一位年輕的華裔美國人，1982年在密歇根州高地公園被兩名心懷不滿的白人汽車工人羅納德·埃本斯和邁克爾·尼茲毆打致死。他們錯誤地認為陳是日本血統，這是他受到致命毆打的唯一原因。 埃本斯和尼茲被判有罪，但殘酷地被判無需入獄：僅罰款$ 3,000。類似的悲劇和不足的無罪釋放/指控使今天的“黑人的命也是命”運動保持了持續的勢頭。從二十世紀六十年代的民權運動到今天，亞裔美國人社區與他們的黑人姐妹和兄弟們站在一起。
ENTREPRENEURSHIP / 企業家精神
Chinese-American restaurants established a reputation for their hospitality and delicious cuisine at inexpensive prices. To attract non-Asian clientele, they marketed themselves with a combination of traditional Chinese appeal, modern Western style and increasingly sweet, mildly-spiced, and deep-fried dishes to suit American palates. Chop Suey joints (a Chinese-American invention that translates to “Odds & Ends”) were a particularly popular destination among young urbanites. The Boston-based Ruby Foo’s Den (pictured) was one of the earliest Chinese and woman-owned restaurants in the country, and the top favorite among non-Chinese customers in the 1930s, including American celebrities. Cathay House (pictured) advertised itself as “the talk of the town for excellent Chinese food.” With today’s diverse palates and globalized cuisines, authentic Chinese as well as Asian Fusion cuisine are thriving. Also pictured are Chinese mooncakes, a culturally-specific delicacy usually eaten on the occasion of the Mid-Autumn Festival in October.
Amid a slim and discriminatory job market, the early male Chinese immigrants arriving in the 1850s found their most dependable enclave in the laundry industry. By the early 20th century, hundreds of Chinese-owned laundries lined the streets of Boston and its suburbs. Once wives and children began immigrating to the U.S. (increasingly after 1924), laundry establishments became operated by entire families—including their rambunctious children pictured here. Featured in the center portrait is Toy Len Goon, owner of Woodfords Corner Laundry in Portland, Maine. She was the double recipient of the Maine and broader American Mother-of-the-Year awards in 1952 due to her ability to operate her laundy for over thirty years while single-handedly raising eight children.
在一個狹窄而充滿歧視的就業市場中，早在十九世紀五十年代到達的男性華人移民在洗衣業中找到了最可靠的飛地。到20世紀初，波士頓及其郊區的街道兩旁已經有數百家華裔擁有的洗衣店。一旦妻子和孩子開始移民到美國（1924年以後越來越多），洗衣店就由整個家庭經營，包括這裡照片中精力旺盛的孩子。中央肖像中的人物是Toy Len Goon，他是緬因州波特蘭市Woodfords Corner洗衣店的所有者。由於她有能力經營洗衣店超過三十年，同時可以獨自撫養八個孩子，因此在1952年同時獲得了緬因州和泛美國的年度母親獎。
Chinatown grocery stores such as Quong Wah Lung & Co. (left image)—one of the earliest and longest-operating Chinese-owned businesses in Boston—and Chong Lung Kee store (right image) operated on multiple fronts. As food markets, they sold food products such as fish, vegetables, tea, and basic household goods. As apothecaries, they sold herbal ingredients for traditional Chinese herbal medicine. Last, these establishments also served as community information centers and as credit unions for sending money overseas. In the left image, Wei Sun Wong of Quong Wah Lung & Co. measures herbs for a prescription using a Chinese scale.
唐人街雜貨店如Quong Wah Lung & Co.（左圖）是波士頓最早，經營時間最長的華人企業之一和Chong Lung Kee商店（右圖）在多個領域都有所經營：作為食品市場，他們出售食品，例如魚、蔬菜、茶和基本家庭用品; 作爲藥劑師出售中藥的草藥，充當社區信息中心，以及作為向海外匯款的信用合作社。 在左圖中，Quong Wah Lung＆Co.的Wei Sun Wong使用中國秤來抓藥。
Rather than newspapers, the fastest and most effective means of spreading news and engagement among the earliest settlers of Chinatown was through street-accessible bulletin boards. Divided into different sections by organizations and subject matter, these listings included job openings, cultural events, items for sale, and other resources for Chinatown residents. During wartime, the bulletin also served as a resource to learn about news from China first-hand. Boston’s major Chinese bulletin board was located at the corner of Oxford and Beach Streets. It was dismantled in 1991 and replaced by increasingly popular Chinese language newspapers. In the rightmost images, You-Ming Wong and his son Jeffrey of the Shanghai Printing Company on Oxford Street are depicted with a wall of 7,000 metal moveable type of Chinese characters used in typesetting in letter presses which was the only printing technology available at the time prior to Chinese typewriters.
PEOPLE (LIFE) / 人物（生命）
Beginning in the late 19th century, Chinatown shared its neighborhood with Boston’s garment and textile industry. Its success depended largely on the skilled, woman Chinese workers it employed, the bulk of whom immigrated to the U.S. in the wake of WWII and with the passage of the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act. As a result of these women’s roles as professional stitchers, sewing was a foundational skill taught to every young Chinatown girl.
In general, women were afforded more leadership roles and independence within Chinese-American society as opposed to traditional Chinese society, forming coalitions such as the New England Chinese Women’s New Life Movement Association. The coalition was founded upon the principles of propriety, righteousness, honesty, and honor, which were put into practice through community engagement and fundraising efforts for their home country, such as financially aiding China’s fight in the Sino-Japanese War (1894-95). An exceptional moment of woman leadership is embodied by Rose Lok (center portrait in second lantern), who is thought to be the first ever Chinese woman pilot. Lok may have been inspired by Amelia Earheart, who worked a neighborhood away in Boston’s South Cove at Denison House (a woman-run settlement house) and flew on the weekends before she became the well-known aviator.
總的來說，與傳統的中國社會相比，華裔婦女在華裔美國人社會中獲得了更多的領導職位和獨立性，形成了新英格蘭華人婦女新生活運動協會等聯盟。該聯盟建立在禮節、公義、誠實和榮譽原則的基礎上，這些原則是通過社區參與和為祖國籌款而付諸實踐的，例如在經濟上協助中國抗日戰爭（1894-95）。Rose Lok（第二盞燈籠的中央肖像）體現了女性領導的非凡時刻，她被認為是有史以來的第一位華裔女性飛行員。Lok可能受到了Amelia Earheart的啟發。Amelia Earheart曾在離唐人街不遠的波士頓南灣丹尼森之家（一個由婦女經營的安置所）工作，並在成為著名飛行員之前常在周末飛行。
Education remains an important focus of the Chinese culture and of Chinese-American immigrants. Still operating today, The Josiah Quincy School (est. 1847) was the first ever U.S. school with graded classrooms (separated by grade level) and individual seats for its students. Most students attending Josiah Quincy were either of Syrian or of Chinese descent—in fact, “Chinatown” was previously known as “Little Syria” or “Syriatown” due to its high population of Syrian immigrants. Josiah Quincy’s 1942 third grade class is pictured in the upper left, while the long photograph below captures the Kwong Kow Chinese School’s 1931 graduation ceremony. Established by the Chinese Merchants Association in 1916, the Kwong Kow School uniquely prioritized the Chinese language and culture in the education of its youth. Also pictured is oracle bone script: the earliest known form of Chinese writing (dating to 1200 BC) and an important tool in understanding the development of the Chinese language. Other imagery includes two symbolic Chinese plants: bamboo as a symbol of youth, strength, longevity, achievement, and as one of the earliest writing surfaces, and the lotus as a symbol of learning and education.
Oracle bone script / 甲骨文：
(from left) 馬/马 mǎ “horse”, 虎 hǔ “tiger”, 豕 shĭ “swine”, 犬 quǎn “dog”, 鼠 shǔ “rat and mouse”, 象 xiàng “elephant”, 豸 zhì “beasts of prey”, 龜/龟 guī “turtle”, 爿 qiáng “low table” (now 床 chuáng), 為/为 wèi “to lead”(now “do” or “for”)
(左起) 馬/马 mǎ, 虎 hǔ, 豕 shĭ, 犬 quǎn, 鼠 shǔ, 象 xiàng, 豸 zhì, 龜/龟 guī , 爿 qiáng “矮桌” (現為床 chuáng), 為/为 wèi “領導”(現為”做”或”對於”)
The historic Hudson Street tenement row houses lodged a tight knit community of families. Children played with each other in the streets and knew each other by their names and nicknames. Formerly a society of mostly men (the U.S. deliberately enacted policies that forbid the immigration of wives and families), Chinatown became a family town after the 1943 repeal of the 1882 Exclusion Act and after WWII. The War Brides Acts of 1945 and 1946—initially intended to help the European wives and girlfriends of American G.I.’s enter the U.S.—unintentionally benefited the wives of Chinese-American soldiers. Children born from these family reunions in the mid-40’s would become the first well-educated, bilingual, bicultural, and professional generation of Chinese-Americans. Greatly influenced by the 1960s Black Power and Civil Rights movements on college campuses, these children would also become the founders of Boston Chinatown’s social justice and arts organizations, such as CPA, AARW, ACDC, and BCNC. BCNC was originally founded by Quincy school teachers, who first saw the need for family daycare and other services. Family and community values are the reason for Chinatown’s ongoing intergenerational support.
Pictured here are two projects by Boston-based artist Wen-ti Tsen that reimagine archival photos of Boston’s Chinatown. The first, a public art project called Home Town: Re-presenting Boston’s Chinatown as Place of People–Then and Now, displays “historical recreations” (life-size wooden cutouts) of the photographs of historic Chinatown residents across Chinatown. The other is a photography series capturing current Chinatown residents against the backdrop of an archival photo of Chinatown’s Harrison Ave. Juxtaposed, the figures in both projects engage in intergenerational conversation about Chinatown’s history and development: namely, “that it needs to be safeguarded against the threatened gentrification from demolitions and high-rent conversions” (Tsen).
Tunney Lee is pictured in Tsen’s center photograph. The late architect, activist MIT professor emeritus of urban planning, is a beloved pillar of Chinatown. In the late 1950s of Boston’s Chinatown, Lee and his neighbors fought to resist the destruction of a portion of Chinatown by the 1945 Central Artery highway Mass Pike expansion, saving many people’s homes. In partnership with the Chinese Historical Society of New England and other organizations, Lee later led MIT students to create the Chinatown Atlas online archive.
Chinese festivals typically revolve around the lunisolar (rather than lunar) calendar, in which months begin on the day of the new moon, and years on the second or third new moon after the winter solstice. New Year’s Day in China, therefore, celebrates the start of Spring and is known most commonly as the Spring Festival. Other popular traditional Chinese festivals include the Mid-Autumn Festival and the Lantern Festival (February 8th: the last day of the Chinese year), among many more. This lantern also celebrates the 2,000 year old Chinese art of shadow puppetry. Puppets constructed from paper or leather are maneuvered behind an illuminated piece of transparent cloth to create dancing shadows, accompanied by music and singing. Filmed by Yu-Wen Wu, the silhouette in the center image is that of performer and artistic director Lenora Lee, extracted from a still frame of one of her dance movements.
中國的節日通常圍繞陰陽曆（而不是陰曆）進行，月從新月開始第一天，年從冬至之後的第二或第三個新月開始。因此，中國的新年慶祝春天的到來，通常被稱為春節。其他受歡迎的傳統中國節日包括中秋節和元宵節（2月8日：農曆新年的最後一天）等。這盞燈籠還慶祝了有2000年歷史的中國皮影戲藝術。在一塊光照下的透明布後面操縱用紙或皮革製成的木偶，以產生跳舞的影子，並伴以音樂和歌唱。 由吳育雯攝製，中心圖像中是舞者和藝術總監Lenora Lee的剪影，摘自她舞蹈動作的一幀靜止畫面。
The lion is a frequent animal subject in Chinese myths and is a symbol of power, wisdom, and promise. Traditional Chinese lion dances are performed during the Chinese New Year Festival (or Spring Festival) and other occasions to pray for good fortune and prosperity for the coming year and to deflect the interference of evil spirits. The dance is influenced by martial arts and performed in a wide variety of styles (depending on the region of China) by two dancers per lion costume, accompanied by a raging rhythm of drums, cymbals, and gongs. On the occasion of the coronavirus pandemic, these lions wear masks to show their commitment to the safety and health of both themselves and others.
ARTS / 藝術
The art of calligraphy is an important part of chinese culture and education. It translates literally to “beautiful writing” and historically was considered the ultimate form of artistic expression above painting and sculpture. Contributing to the lanterns are three Boston-based calligraphers: Maurice Chi, Peter Ng, and Mike Mei.
書法藝術是中國文化教育的重要組成部分。它從字面上翻譯為“美麗的書寫”，在歷史上被認為是凌駕於繪畫和雕塑之上的藝術表達的最終形式。為燈籠的做出貢獻的是三位波士頓書法家：Maurice Chi，Peter Ng和Mike Mei。
This is a classic poem from “Quiet Night Thinking” by Tang Dynasty romantic poet, Li Bai (701-762 AD). This poem is about the feeling of missing one’s hometown on a quiet, moonlit night. Here, Chi writes in the style of seal script (stylized, simplified pictures that symbolize objects), which was used as long as 10,000 years ago. The character for “moon,” for example, is symbolized by the top-center crescent shape. These pictograms are the building blocks for the more complex and contemporary Chinese characters.
This saying is from a Qing dynasty verse. The bamboo in the accompanying ink painting represents the qualities of moral integrity, resistance, and loyalty.
In this calligraphy piece, Ng writes in a contemporary style of calligraphy. Incorporated is the traditional art of Chinese papercut (pictured in red), creating astonishingly intricate cuts that relate tales of folklore and daily life.
Behind the calligraphy, the plum blossom is a symbol for resilience and perseverance in the face of adversity.
Inspired by traditional Chinese papercuts, this drawing by Yu-Wen Wu displays the twelve animals of the Chinese Zodiac: the Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig. These animals are used to represent each of the twelve years in the Zodiac’s cycle and, depending on one’s birth year, are believed to inform one’s personality, fortune, and compatibility with others, among further traits.
The bordering medallions are represented by the character 福 (fu) and symbolize blessings. Additionally, the entwined plants of bamboo, lotus, chrysanthemum, pine tree, and peach all signify longevity, among other qualities: bamboo for suppleness, strength, endurance, and flexibility, the lotus flower for enlightenment, the chrysanthemum flower for intellect, cleansing, and curing, and the pine tree for steadfastness, self-discipline, endurance, and a long life.
The story of the Chinese moon goddess Chang’e (嫦娥) is an important myth in the Chinese canon and is typically celebrated during the Mid-Autumn Festival. There are many versions of this legend. One version is that her husband and archer Hou-Yi, shot down nine suns in order to save the earth from being scorched. As a reward, he was given an immortality elixir by an immortal. Soon, an evil apprentice steals this elixir for Chang’e, who drinks it to become the spirit and goddess of the moon. She then flees to the moon and leaves her husband behind. A rabbit (pictured in the lower right) pities her and goes to the moon to keep her company and prepare more immortality elixirs for her. Back on earth, her husband leaves her favorite desserts and fruits out at night to demonstrate his forgiveness and symbolically provide her with his company. Those who celebrate the Mid-Autumn festival often partake in this same practice symbolizing the family reunion and appreciate the full moon.
Many of the immigrants to Boston’s Chinatown are from the region of Guangdong (Canton province). Representing this region in the bottom left corner is a sampan (三板), a Cantonese term for a flat bottom sailboat translating to “three planks.” Sampans are used for shelter (both temporary and permanent) on inland waters of southern China and Southeast Asia. The Sampan is also the idea of charting new courses.
Extracted from Yu-Wen Wu’s series of drawings “Mapping Stories,” pictured is a migration map charting the global migration patterns of 2018. Historically and now, America offers the opportunity for a new life for immigrants who flee from war, persecution, and economic hardships. “Streets paved in gold” (interpreted here materially here by strips of gold leaf) was a common metaphor for that dream in anticipation of arriving at a new place of promise.
Youth Identity /青少年身份
Youths and alumni of the ACDC, BCNC, and CTSO programs were invited to participate in a project exploring their identity through self portraits. In drawing, photography, and writing, they shared their family and neighborhood stories and expressed their individual identities. The drawings and photographs of twenty-seven youths participated are displayed over three lanterns.
In a Community Listening session hosted this past February as an open, public platform, Yu-Wen Wu and the Greenway Conservancy invited Chinatown residents, community leaders, organizations, and businesses to share such questions as their family’s history, the current issues facing Chinatown and what they hope for Chinatown moving forward.
Below are some of the questions posed and a few of the answers from participants:
“Warmth, light, safety” / “溫暖、輕盈、安全”
“Hope and Joy” / “希望與喜悅”
“Light is being able to come out of dark, difficult, or hard times.” / “光能從黑暗、困難或艱難的時刻中擺脫出來。”
“Both sides of my family immigrated here decades ago from Guangdong. My parents met as teenagers in the Chinese immigrant community in Chinatown. I was born and raised in this Chinatown.”
“Chinatown is a living, breathing piece of history.”
“It’s my hometown. I belong here. I am proud because I am the third generation…To me this is a very unique place that nurtured me.
“I wish for balance & peace amidst & despite a turbulent world.” / “儘管世界動盪，但我希望在動蕩之中保持平衡與和平。”
“I wish Chinatown remains and establishes itself as a permanent community/ neighborhood.” / “我希望唐人街能夠保留並建為一個永久性的社區/鄰里。”
“People accepting each other’s different opinions/differences.” / “人們接受彼此的不同意見/分歧。”
I (and my family) help develop social, economic, and medical organizations in Chinatown for the people. I want everyone to receive these benefits for generations to come.” / 我（和我的家人）在唐人街幫助人們建立社會、經濟和醫療組織。我希望每個人和他們的後代都能從此獲益。”
Amy Chin Guen contributed her words of her vision for chinatown. Her daughter, Terry Guen wrote a brief history, History of Ming Mow Chin and Family, of the family’s immigration. This is one story of the hardship and resiliency of an immigrant family in Boston’s Chinatown.
Amy Chin Guen表達了她對唐人街的願景。她的女兒Terry Guen撰寫了有關家族移民的簡短歷史《History of Ming Mow Chin and Family》。這是關於波士頓唐人街一個移民家庭付出艱辛和展現韌勁的故事。
Yu-Wen Wu / 吳育雯
Yu-Wen Wu is an interdisciplinary artist living and working in Boston. Born in Taipei, Taiwan, Wu’s subjectivity as an immigrant is central to her artwork. Arriving at an early age, her experiences have shaped her work in areas of migration–examining issues of displacement, arrival, assimilation and the shape of identity in a new country. At the crossroads of art, science, politics and social issues, her wide range of projects include large-scale drawings, site-specific video installations, community engaged practices and public art.
Writing by / 撰寫
Text accompanying each lantern written by Gina Lindner with contributing editors Yu-Wen Wu and Cynthia Yee
Gina Lindner與特約編輯吳育雯、Cynthia Yee共同撰寫了每盞燈籠附帶的文字
Gina Lindner is a Boston-based arts writer, independent curator, and conceptual artist. She is a contributing writer to Boston Art Review, Art New England magazine, and Boston Hassle.
Gina Lindner是波士頓藝術作家、獨立策展人和概念畫家。她是《Boston Art Review》、《Art New England》雜誌和《Boston Hassle》的特約作家。
Cynthia Yee is a Chinatown native, educator, and writer. She is the author of Hudson Street Chronicles.
Cynthia Yee是唐人街居民、教育家和作家。 她是《Hudson Street Chronicles》的作者。
To, Wing-Kai and the Chinese Historical Society of New England. Chinese in Boston. Charleston SC, Arcadia Publishing, 2008.
杜榮佳和紐英崙華人歷史協會. 波士頓華人. 查爾斯頓 南卡羅來納, 阿卡迪亞出版社, 2008.
Lantern images courtesy of / 燈籠圖片貢獻
Boston Athenaeum; Boston Globe Archives; Boston Traveler/International Society; Chinatown Atlas; Chinese Historical Society of New England (CHSNE Collection); Chinese Progressive Association; International Society; Kneel Archives; Royal Museum Greenwich, London. Edward & Amy Guen; Alice Hom; Tom Hynes, Jeffrey Wong, Reggie Wong; Cynthia Yee.
Boston Athenaeum; 波士頓環球報檔案館; Boston Traveler/International Society; Chinatown Atlas; 紐英崙華人歷史協會 (CHSNE收藏); 華人前進會; International Society; Kneel Archives; Royal Museum Greenwich, London. Edward & Amy Guen; Alice Hom; Tom Hynes, Jeffrey Wong, Reggie Wong; Cynthia Yee.
Artistic contributions by / 藝術貢獻
Lillian Lee is a Boston based graphic illustrator. She designed the BLM sign with translation on one of the lanterns.
Lenora Lee is a performer and artistic director
Wen-ti Tsen is an interdisciplinary community artist. He was born in China and raised in Europe before coming to the U.S. to study painting at Boston’s School of the Museum of Fine Arts (SMFA). Since the mid-1970s, he has been making art in a variety of forms that explores cultural connections: personal paintings and installations, large-scale public art sculptures, and community organization to express social issues.
Maurice Chi is a Boston-based calligrapher, photographer and retired IT professional.
Peter Ng is an artist, entrepreneur, and philanthropist who works predominantly in watercolor, oil, acrylic, Chinese calligraphy and Chinese ink painting. He is the creator of the Brushmagic Kids (神筆小孩) and The East Meet West (中西結合) product line. His artwork has been displayed and represented in galleries around the world.
Mike Mei is a calligraphy teacher at Brandeis University and the America Weston Academy, as well as the President of the Chinese American Fine Arts Society.
Youth self portraits by / 青少年自畫像貢獻:
- Fernando, A. Wu, A. Namjam, A. Kuan, A. Guan, B. Moy, C. Chen, C. Nguyen, D. Ma, J. Xu, J. Yu, L. Tran, M. Nguyen, N. Huang, O. Moy, V. Li, and W. Chau, N. Robinson-McCaskill, W. Zhu, R. Fabian, Wendy Han, S. Elianor, J. Dai, Ella Cascino, K. Zheng, and J. Guzman
Fabricators and Installers / 製造和安裝者
Jaywalk Studios is a consultancy creating custom objects. The team has collaborated with diverse clients including healthcare professionals, technology innovators, and artists. Jaywalk Studio is Haik Tokatlyan, Steve Listwon, and Jeff Andrade. Jaywalk Studios worked with Yu-Wen Wu on her vision for Lantern Stories.
Jaywalk Studios是定制諮詢公司。該團隊與包括醫療保健專業人員、技術創新者和藝術家在內的各種客戶進行過合作。Jaywalk Studio由Haik Tokatlyan、Steve Listwon和Jeff Andrade組成。Jaywalk Studios與吳育雯合作展現了她眼中的”燈籠故事“。
Special Thanks to: The Greenway Conservancy team and Chinatown Main Street,
亞美社區發展協會、波士頓華埠社區、 Castle Square Tenants Organization、紐英崙華人歷史協會 (CHSNE)、華人前進會