Artist Rene Yung Commemorates San Jose’s Early Chinese Community Through Art, Food, and History

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San Jose, CA – Cauldron (“Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread”) a site-specific installation by artist Rene Yung about sustenance, culture and place, opens on December 19, 2013 at the San Jose Museum of Art with a walk through by the artist at 7 pm. The installation was commissioned by the San Jose Museum of Art as part of the exhibition Around the Table.


Located in the Davies Gallery, the historic wing of the Museum overlooking the former site of San Jose’s first Chinese community, the Market Street Chinatown, the installation commemorates the city’s early Chinese immigrants. It features a nine foot wide by seven foot high charcoal drawing of a bowl of rice as an iconic symbol of cultural sustenance, and a historic rice bowl and fragments excavated from the archaeological site of Market Street Chinatown, which was destroyed by arson fire in 1887. The translucent enlargement of a historic photograph of the raging fire and on-looking townspeople fills the gallery windows, which look out on today’s downtown San Jose, and eerily fuses past and present. Visitors are invited to share personal reflections on the meaning of rice and sustenance at the Community Wall of the installation.
The installation is a distillation of Yung’s innovatively transdisciplinary work, and a continuation her collaboration with the Market Street Chinatown Archaeological Project. Through the layered juxtaposition of art and artifact, place and people, Cauldron (“Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread) provides a powerful contemplation of the cultural and historical significance of sustenance.
Cauldron (“Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread”), artist  Rene Yung’s site-specific installation about sustenance, culture and place, at the  San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose, CA.
Exhibition on view from December 19, 2013 to April 20, 2014
Artist gallery walk through 7 pm, December 19, 2013
Museum Hours: Tuesday – Sunday, 11 am – 5 pm. Third Thursday of each month open until 8 pm. Closed Monday.
Davies Gallery at San Jose Museum of Art, 110 S Market St, San Jose, CA 95110
Admission $8 Adults, $5 Students and Seniors; Third Thursdays $5 after 5 pm;
Rene Yung is an internationally exhibiting artist, designer, thinker, and writer. Her cross-disciplinary works articulate the hidden and the overlooked by connecting community, history and place. A native of Hong Kong, she has exhibited at venues including TransCulture, part of the 46th Venice Biennale. Yung is Artistic and Founding Director of Chinese WhispersSM, a research and storytelling project about the early Chinese immigrants who helped build the American West, and Artistic Director of  City Beneath the City, an installation in collaboration with the Market Street Chinatown Archaeology Project to explore the intersection of art and archaeology.
Market Street Chinatown Archaeological Project is a research and education program developed by the Stanford Archaeology Center, the Stanford University Department of Anthropology, History San Jose, Environmental Science Associates, and the Chinese Historical and Cultural Project.
The San Jose Museum of Art is a museum of modern and contemporary art, and the leading institution in the Silicon Valley dedicated to the art of our time. Established in 1969, SJMA presents art ranging from modern masterpieces to recent works by young, emerging artists; its permanent collection focuses on West Coast art.

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