Performing Visible Resilience

Performing Visible Resilience

Performing the VisibleMay 31
Visibility Project & Resilience Archives, Qcc, APICC & CIIS present
Performing Visible Resilience
CIIS, 6pm/art opening; 7pm/performance
Art Exhibition: May 1 – June 8
Tickets/Donations: $5 – $25 NOTA

Stories of comedy, drama, and resilience are featured in this unique performance and visual arts showcase. A cast of LGBTQ APA artists share personal narratives on stage, while the walls feature larger than life portraits and tintypes from the Visibility Project.

Performing Visible Resilience is an interdisciplinary showcase that features personal narrative stories told by a cast of LGBTQ APA artists that connects personal histories to broader movement history through the work of the Resilience Archives. A stage filled with South Asian, Pacific Islander, Southeast Asian, East Asian, transgender, mixed race, and intergenerational performers celebrating nuances of spectrum of the Asian Pacific American community.

Surrounding the storytellers are large scale intimate portraits of the Queer APA Women and Transgender community from across the United States curated from ten years of work from the Visibility Project. Two projects. Two community archives. One event.

We live in a moment saturated with self-portraiture. We document and curate our own public presence at a pace and a scale for which there is no precedent in human history, images exchanged virtually and instantaneously within our self-selected social networks. But the photographic portrait like those in the Visibility Project and stories told through the Resilience Archives stand apart, promising something meaningfully different.

The Q/T Asian Pacific American community has often been ignored, disenfranchised, and silenced. We provide a platform for queer and trans Asian Pacific Americans to share their stories and shift this dynamic.

When people see our portraits and hear our stories, they see themselves, they see their family, they see their friends.



Mia Nakano photo by Andria Lo

Mia Nakano photo by Andria Lo

Mia Nakano is an archivist, photographer, and data strategist rooted in Oakland, CA. Her work is shaped through her experiences as a proud 4th generation Japanese American, queer woman of color, daughter of a single mother, and sister of a deaf adult. She is a self-taught artist, who advocates strategic and ethical use of visual arts to make social change. Nakano is the Founder & Director of the Visibility Project and Co-Founder & Director of the Resilience Archives. She is a board member of Banteay Srei, whose work is dedicated to ending sexual exploitation of young Southeast Asian women in Oakland. She is on the leadership team of the Asian American for Civil Rights and Equality (AACRE) network, and co-founder of Hyphen magazine. Nakano has dedicated the last fifteen years to uplifting the stories and histories of LGBTQ Asian Pacific Americans. She is currently the communications manager for Art Practical.
Kat Evasco is a writer, stand up comedian, performance artist, and educator. Evasco is best known for her national touring autobiographical one-woman show, Mommy Queerest, co-written and directed by John Caldon. Evasco studied acting and personal narrative storytelling with Anna Deveare Smith and playwriting with Cherríe Moraga. She has performed at venues including the Haha Cafe, San Jose Improv, the Purple Onion, Napa Valley Opera House, Logan Center for the Arts, Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, and FringeArts. Evasco’s current projects include the developing and directing Prieto, a solo show written and performed by nationally acclaimed poet and undocumented activist, Yosimar Reyes, in collaboration with Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, Jose Antonio Vargas. She is also directing a new solo show by poet and spoken word artist, Jason Bayani, called Locus of Control.  

Kat Evasco photo by Vincent Susa

Kat Evasco photo by Vincent Susa

Un Jung Lim Un Jung Lim is the Co-Facilitator of the Resilience Archives: Performing Resilience storytelling workshops. They are a first generation Queer Korean American (Queeran) community organizer and performer. Un Jung is a co-founder of Q-Wave, a social and political organization in New York City that amplifies the voices of the Queer Asian Women and Trans* community. They are also the co-founder of the Dari Project, a grass-roots organization that documents and shines light on the stories of LGBTQ Korean Americans. aMagazine recognized them as one of the top 10 Asian American student leaders on American campuses after they made strides in creating an Asian American Studies program at Mount Holyoke College. They have a Masters in Social Work and is passionate about providing support and services to marginalized communities through HIV/AIDs advocacy, LGBTQ youth mentorship, campaigning to end violence against women, dismantling white-supremacy and promoting access to low-income housing. They believe in bringing a social justice lens to all their work.
Deirdre Visser is Curator of The Arts at CIIS. As curator and educator she strives to promote pluralism in the arts, to support artists in the creation of new work, and to foster dynamic and critical dialogues within and across communities that propose integrative approaches to the urgent questions we collectively face. Her exhibitions, publications and public programming with The Arts at CIIS have connected history to the present, both ethically and strategically, to look for common themes and engage historical context in a deeper understanding of the present. She has mounted exhibitions and convened public dialogues about such topics as the representation of African American men; the history of the Chicano Movement and the ways it informs the work of young Chicana artists across California today; the legacy of the Black Panther Party; and the intersections between contemporary photographic practice and representational pluralism.


The Visibility Project documents the personal experiences of the Queer Asian Pacific American women and transgender community by interweaving visual art, personal narratives, and social justice onto an accessible online platform.

The Resilience Archives is a movement strategy organization that combines arts education, visual arts, storytelling, collection and digitization of community archives into a living digital map to create stories, memories, and uplift the history of California Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Queer (LGBTQ) Asian Pacific Americans (APAs).