making self, finding home
In Fall 2022, the Visual Arts, Culture, and Media (VCAM) center and the Gender Resources and Sexuality Equity (GRASE) center at Haverford College teamed up to make an exhibition centering queer experiences and history at Haverford. The night I visited the exhibition, I decided to make a dance improvisation video in the exhibition room. This video was completed that night in one take, with very little choreographic planning before starting. The music is “Dark Night of the Soul” and then “Luminous Night of the Soul” by Ola Gjeilo.
Slow Boats to China
In Spring 2021, my friend Jixin Jia, then a senior at Haverford College, recruited me as an actor (playing myself) for his anthropology senior thesis, which took the form of an experimental film reflecting upon Chinese diasporic consciousness. Although it was his project and he was the ultimate arbiter of creative decisions, I had the opportunity to co-create aspects of the film, drawing from my own experience as a second-generation Chinese American.
My roommate of my first year of college stocked many snacks in our room. One day, one of our hallmates joked that she was the “God of snacks.” The hallmate then rephrased: “I mean, Goddess of snacks.” Spontaneously, I responded, “How about Goddex?”
I didn’t even know then that I was non-binary; it was the very beginning of my starting to explore gender. Months later, I played around with the free version of the iPad app Sketchbook Motion and created this very brief video.
By the way, other people came up with “Goddex” long before I did. I still love it.
Class of 0000
In 2019, over 500 graduation speakers in the US of the high school Class of 2019 read the same commencement speech, demanding that politicians make a plan to get the country to zero emissions, or else risk getting zero of young people’s votes. I was not a graduation speaker, but I wanted to support the initiative. So I recruited my Honors Philosophy class (taught by the wonderful Derek Wright) to make a video that presented the same speech that the graduation speakers spoke.