Pre-eminent Asian American photographer Corky Lee welcomed dozens of API community leaders and supporters to the Queens Museum of Art Saturday at a reception celebrating Mr. Lee’s forty years of accomplishments. The reception, in connection with Lee’s new exhibit entitled “Asian Pacifically New York,” was sponsored by the Asian American Journalists Association and by the Asian American Legal Defense Fund.
On display were three dozen of Lee’s most famous photographs, which were divided into panel representing distinct themes, which included Asian American civil rights and the impact of the events of September 11 had on the API community.
Lee remarked that he could have easily had one hundred more photos in addition to the thirty-six that were on display at the exhibit, but that the curators advised him, “Less is more.”
Longtime friends of Lee remarked on the depth and scope of Lee’s accomplishments, one of whom referred to Lee in the 1970′s as being “a scrawny kid running around with a camera.”
One thing that distinguishes Lee from many other photographers is Lee’s reputation for serving the dual roles of artist and educator. Behind each of Lee’s photographs is an elaborate story that includes not only the personal situations of the subjects who are pictured, but also the historical and cultural phenomena placing the photographs in context.
“Asian Pacifically New York” will continue to be on display at the Queens Museum of Art through August 14, 2011.