The first thing you see in one of the two rooms set aside for the exhibit is a poster from the 1964-65 World's Fair touting the China pavilion, and small exhibits on the walls follow the Chinese experience decade by decade. Photos from post-2000, when the United States population of Chinese immigrants exceeded 1 million, show the first Chinese astronaut, rather nervously waving from his space capsule, the flag of China sewn to his suit. There are photos of Gary Locke, ex-governor of Washington state, posing with his well-scrubbed family; Yao Ming, the huge Chinese basketball star; John Liu, the first (and only!) Chinese American elected to the New York City Council; and a photo of Jimmy Meng, the first Chinese immigrant elected to the New York State Assembly. There's a flier, done in the bilious yellows and reds of 1960s and early '70s adverts, announcing the dedication of the loftily placed Sun Yat Sen Hall at St. John's University on Sept. 8, 1973. Invitations to gallery shows of Chinese artists are as beautifully done as the artwork themselves. There's propaganda for the Cultural Revolution ("Take back Hong Kong!") near a photo from Vietnam, whose wasteful war finally made America pay attention to things Asian. There's a photo of President Jimmy Carter and the Chinese premier establishing diplomatic relations, heartbreaking shots of Chinese being kicked out of Vietnam after the war, and a comfortingly quotidian snap of two kids riding a bike through the projects.T
©2005 Community News Group
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