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Asian girl struggle

2017

Video work

For this performance, I considered how my experience growing up in Japan affected my ideas of womanhood and beauty. Throughout Asia, there is a common occurrence of white models on fashion magazines and cosmetic advertisements, as if they are the universal example of perfect beauty. This ideal is carried over into Asian beauty practices: some women get plastic surgery to have high noses, double eyelids, and lighter skin to appear more like white women. Within the monoculture of Japan, the most important shared value is harmony: I felt compelled to go along with these cultural beauty standards, and, as a young person, I believed it beyond all doubt.

Asian Girl Struggle satirically presents this element of Asian culture. As a performance artist, I am trying to expose the absurdities of a manipulative social structure while at the same time humorously struggling and reveling in it. The Japanese sense of beauty is a crooked envy of Western culture – one that has been built by the historic complexities of the relationship between Asian and Western countries.