Artist Rene Yung gives a voice to Chinese immigrants past and present

Mar 17, 2016


Multimedia artist Rene Yung was born in Hong Kong and immigrated to the Bay Area when she was 14 years old. For the past decade, she's been dedicated to uncovering the hidden history of early Chinese immigrants in the American West with her multi-platform art and storytelling project Chinese Whispers.

The project's new stage show “Golden Gate” combines the stories of 19th century Chinese immigrants with those of recent immigrants living in San Francisco’s Chinatown. Yung spoke with KALW’s Jen Chien about exploring history that’s hidden right under our noses, and the importance of letting ordinary people speak for themselves.


YUNG: He felt like when he walked out in the street, a zipper has been zipped across his mouth. You know, he just can't communicate. And the early immigrants must've really felt like that.

Chinese Whispers presents “Golden Gate”, Friday, March 18, through Sunday, March 20, at the Southside Theater at Fort Mason Center.