October 13, 2022

Progressive Diasporas is a curatorial project series exploring the experiences and intersections of immigrant diasporas through a set of collaboratively developed, cumulative experiences and events. The project - formed in part through the exploration of the curators’ own ongoing creative and personal exchange over 7 years - aims to share and support collaboration between artists, non-artists, program participants, and the curators. With a focus on process as practice, Progressive Diasporas draws its shape from the immigrant experiences embedded in our everyday strategies for survival, amassing small networks, shifting forms and identities, seeking out resources, adjusting comfort, and other invisible forms of sustainability. The project hopes to create spaces for intersectionality around the shared experiences and connections one finds through the process of migration, movement and displacement of identities. 

Opening Event
Saturday, October 22, 2pm - 6pm , free and open to all

The project will launch during The Elizabeth Foundation’s Open Studios on October 22, featuring installations and video work by both artists, and a zine-making workshop led by Adobo-Fish-Sauce.  Come say hi to us and the artists!

Bring Your Own Diasporas
Tuesday, October 25, 6:30-8:30pm
Limited capacity, FREE RSVP here

Co-curators Anna Harsanyi & Sheetal Prajapati will host a sharing session inviting participants to bring and share stories and artifacts expressing their experience of intersectionality in diaspora, in a small group dialog. Prompts for discussion for this session will be drawn in part from Adobo-Fish-Sauce.

Closing Performances and Gathering
Friday, October 28, 7-9pm
Limited capacity, FREE RSVP here

A final culminating event will present the artists’ work over the course of their projects, including a lecture performance by Umber Majeed and a cooking and poetry performance by Adobo-Fish-Sauce.

About the Artists’ Projects
Adobo-Fish-Sauce will examine how the diaspora has affected their larger Puerto Rican and Khmer communities, then dive into how it has impacted their personal families and the ways it has manifested in them. With this new perspective, they will envision paths of joy and healing, moving forward through habits and rituals they wish to put in place. The project will showcase their process of discovering and writing new works, as well as featuring a final video piece and performance.

Umber Majeed’s project is an iteration of an ongoing work, Trans-Pakistan Zindabad (Long Live Trans-Pakistan), an interactive installation incorporating video, ceramic sculptures, postcards, and other elements to speculate on nostalgia, gentrification, and futurity of urbanization claims in Lahore, Pakistan. Combining familial archives, the apparatus of the screen, tools of leisure, context of gentrification in South Asia, the project seeks for viewers to loiter in the kitsch imaginary of corporate culture and critical analysis within a former failed tourism company of the artist’s uncle (a digitally revitalized “Trans-Pakistan Adventure Services”). This specific iteration includes an interactive booth, Overseas Enclave, directly addressing the accumulation of the ‘South Asian digital kitsch and labor.’ Through a collaboration with self-taught South Asian graphic designers, the artist has designed Trans-Pakistan logo postcards combining digital prints and screen printing processes. The available takeaways will be framed around a number of promotional videos on behalf of Trans-Pakistan.

Special thanks to the EFA Project Space team and our funders, The Puffin Foundation, the Lower Manhattan Arts Council, and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.