Model Minority:
A Screening and Workshop Series

Jun 1, 2013 - Apr 30, 2014 @ Various
gendai_progam page.gif

Model Minority is a screening and workshop programme facilitated by Gendai's Mobile Unit. Over the course of four bi-monthly thematic event "modules" we will explore the status of cultural diversity and multiculturalism in Canada today through the highly controversial notion of the "model minority."

With: Christine Choy, Richard Fung, Jacqueline Hoang Nguyen, Will Kwan and more.
Partners: Gallery TPW R&D, Reel Asian Film Festival, SAVAC, Unpack Studio, Whippersnapper

From Spring through Winter 2013 Gendai's programme will focus on critically evaluating the controversial notion of the “model minority”towards posing new imaginaries of a “radical multiculturalism.” With this project we aim to create a roving, process-based public platform for the production of new dialogues, alliances and creative research. The visual and discursive material produced from the platform will in turn be translated into a publication kit and two artist-based commissions in 2014.

“Model Minority” is a normative term and label usually attributed to a minority group largely considered to be “ideal” by virtue of attaining successful integration into the dominant culture. In North America, the term is often associated with communities of Asian-Pacific background. The Model Minority is cast as hardworking, obedient, diligent, and agreeable. While on the surface these ostensibly positive qualities are desirable, they trivialize the struggles and demands of those who do and do not live up to this profile, while affirming problematic racial hierarchies by casting other minorities as other than “model.”

To address this problematic term, Gendai will curate a series of participatory projects unfolding bimonthly over the Summer through Winter of 2013. Various artists, designers, curators, policy researchers, writers and activists will present four separate “minority modules” on the topic of the Model Minority. Going along with the constructed and stereotypical character of such a term—which are nevertheless rooted in or fed by “real life” power relations, policy changes and reified by popular media representations—Gendai will involve artists and other practitioners who take on each Module and direct it tactically, speculatively and imaginatively.

More information on the series can be found on the Model Minority project blog at

Special thanks to the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council and all our generous donors who contributed to Gendai's Minority Model Indiegogo campaign.


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Thu Jun 6, 2013 - 6:30 pm @ TPW R&D, 1256 Dundas St W (W of Ossington)


Sat Jun 8, 2013 - 11:00 am @ Unpack Studio, 11 Willison Square (Dundas & Spadina)

A Rolling Neighbourhood Survey Reading

Mon Oct 21, 2013 - 7:00 pm @ Scadding Court Community Centre, 707 Dundas St W, Program Room #4

The Ecology of an Art Scene Symposium - Canadian Art Foundation International Speaker Series

Fri Nov 8, 2013 - 7:00 pm @ Various

American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs

Tue Nov 12, 2013 - 7:00 pm @ School of Images Arts - Ryerson University - 122 Bond Street

The Making of an Archive

Sat Jan 18, 2014 - 12:00 pm @ Art Gallery of Ontario