A Seat at the Table: Chinese Immigration and British Columbia is the inaugural exhibition of the Chinese Canadian Museum. Using food and restaurant culture as entry point, the project highlights stories that reveal the great diversity of immigrant experiences and of the communities immigrants develop. It also addresses themes of belonging, racism, agency, resilience and reparation as important facets of the complex picture of Chinese migrants and their descendants in the province.
A Seat at the Table: Chinese Immigration and British Columbia
- When: Exhibition in Chinatown: Now until August 2022
- Thurs-Sun 10:00am – 4:00pm (Guided Tours by appointment Sat/Sun 4:00pm)
- Where: Chinese Canadian Museum Temporary Site (27 E Pender, Vancouver)
- Admission: Free/by donation. Plan your visit.
- A companion exhibition is also on view at Museum of Vancouver.
A Seat at the Table: Chinese Immigration and British Columbia, co-produced by Museum of Vancouver and University of British Columbia in partnership with Chinese Canadian Museum of BC, also recently received the Public History Prize in the products and projects category from Canadian Historical Association.
Commended by the Canadian Historical Association (CHA) Prize Committee in their award announcement, A Seat at the Table is “based on deep research and extensive community consultation and collaboration… Food is a key part of the story…which invites visitors to ‘take a seat’ and engage with home video, personal stories, artifacts and public art projects. The project strikes an effective balance between challenging histories of racism and discrimination, and stories of resilience and vibrant community life.”
The annual Public History Prize recognizes work that achieves high standards of original research, scholarship, and presentation; brings an innovative public history contribution to its audience.
“The Chinese-Canadian community had a vision for a museum that showcases its history and culture, past and present, in all its diversity,” said Melanie Mark, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport. “This exhibition is that vision made real. This award recognizes the incredible collaboration, research and ingenuity that went into bringing ‘A Seat at the Table’ to life. I loved visiting with my daughters, and this summer I encourage everyone to visit this award-winning exhibition in the heart of Vancouver’s historic Chinatown.”
Three years in the making, this highly collaborative project was funded by the B.C. government, City of Vancouver, and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. A Seat at the Table is a multi-sited and collaborative exhibition project that explores historical and contemporary stories of Chinese Canadians in BC and their struggles for belonging.
Using food and restaurant culture as entry point, the project highlights stories that reveal the great diversity of immigrant experiences and communities immigrants develop. It also addresses themes of belonging, racism, agency, resilience and reparation as important facets of the complex picture of Chinese migrants and their descendants in the province.
Participatory approach is central to this exhibition. People can interact with the exhibit such as the paper shadow displays and virtual reality stations. Visitors are also encouraged to share their stories through the multimedia storytelling booths and add to the exhibition’s content.
This award-winning multi-sited exhibition project is currently on view at Chinese Canadian Museum’s temporary site in Chinatown and at the Museum of Vancouver. A Seat at the Table is expected to travel throughout BC in 2022.