Current Exhibition

Promotional graphic for Corky Lee on My Mind exhibition

We're honored to relaunch our gallery in SoHo with an exhibition celebrating our dear friend, photographer, and legend, Corky Lee.

It is almost impossible to think of modern Asian American history without thinking of the legendary Corky Lee (1947–2021). He was there at every key moment for the last 50 years, from protests stemming from the 1982 murder of Vincent Chin to students demonstrating for ethnic studies in the 1990s to an epic gathering of his making of the descendents of Chinese railroad laborers in 2014.

He humorously referred to himself as the “undisputed unofficial Asian American Photographer Laureate,” but that indeed he was. Making the invisible visible. Capturing moments both historic and everyday, political and personal. Combating injustice and wielding justice with every snap of his camera.

Corky started his photography career in 1971, the same year that Pearl River was founded. He and the Chens were part of the same activist community centered around 22 Catherine Street, the building that housed both the pioneering collective Basement Workshop and the very first Pearl River Mart store. When we relaunched Pearl River in 2016, and created what is now the city’s only Asian American art gallery, Corky was of course there too. As one of our first artistsin-residence, his exhibition, “Chinese America on My Mind,” set the bar high for all those who followed. He set the tone for the gallery itself, which became a warm and inspiring hub for the many and varied perspectives, stories, and experiences of the Asian American community. He showed his support and enthusiasm for his fellow artists, inspiring, mentoring, and encouraging many friends to exhibit.

As we reopen our gallery, it seems only fitting that Corky helps us rebuild yet again. Curated by artist and friend Chee Wang Ng, photographer and longtime partner Karen Zhou, and Pearl River President and friend Joanne Kwong, this exhibition brings together 21 photographers — friends, colleagues, mentees — to pay homage to Corky’s philosophy of “photographic justice,” honor his work, and share pieces he would have loved.

Participating artists

LINCOLN ANDERSON

TOMIE ARAI

LOUIS CHAN

EDWARD CHENG

ALAN S. CHIN

STAN HONDA

BOB HSIANG

JOSEPH HSU

ANDREW KUNG

JOOK LEUNG

KYLE LUI

CHEE WANG NG

WAI NG

JOSEPH SONGCO

CINDY TRINH

ANTONY WONG

DEAN WONG

LELAND WONG

MARILYNN K. YEE

HAI ZHANG

KAREN ZHOU

  

Visitors are also invited to contribute their own photographic or written memories about Corky.

Events

We were so honored to welcome the artists and friends and family for a private reception on June 10. On June 12, we hosted an artist meet-and-greet for the general public. Follow us on Instagram or sign up for our newsletter to learn about possible future events.

Press

Press releases

Learn more about Corky Lee

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