So unfortunately, miscommunications can really screw a lot of things over. AA Limelight was recently deleted by their server, iPage, over one of these miscommunications. The details make a short story longer than it needs to be.
Even though the site is no longer available or active, it was a great experience for the AA Limelight team, as some of them will attest in this post. We’ve had the chance to interview more than 40 artists, 20 community organizations, and post over 40 Perspectives. The reason we did was because all of you kept reading.
Our Beau Sia interview, coming out later in April, will be our last post. This post is reserved exclusively for Tumblr. After that, it’s time for us to move on to the next chapter of our lives, and the team will express a lot more eloquently what a pleasure it’s been to reveal the connection between Asian American arts and Asian American community.
AA Limelight was made to show that there is a link between Asian American cultural productions and the Asian American audience. No matter how mainstream or popular a work becomes, it’s always rooted in the community that guided its success. I think that over the course of seeing all of our work posted online, this truth has never been made more apparent. I hope that you, our readers, were able to see how closely related the two are, as well. It’s been a great privilege to be able to contribute towards AA Limelight, and I hope that seeing the great work that goes into Asian American cultural production would have inspired people to pursue the dreams they’ve always held.
It’s been an honor contributing to the development of AA Limelight for the past year and a half. I will treasure the experience of being able to hit up artists. I would have never thought 4 years earlier when I watched my first Kollaboration in LA that I’d be talking to Kollaboration’s founder Paul Kim. Full of warm experiences and good vibes all around, I will cherish the humbling times I shared with AA Limelight. Shout out to AA Limelight's founder Steven Cong for his vision of collective growth and his vision of bringing media back to the AA community. Certainly, this vision will progress as this is only the end of a chapter and the beginning of a new one. Here’s hoping for the best.
Thank you for being part of what I’d call a unique virtual community that served to share not only knowledge about Asian American arts, culture and entertainment, but delved into deeper themes relating to racism, inequality and historical remembrances of the past. As first time writer for a public website, the experience has been absolutely worthwhile and personal. I’ve had the wonderful opportunity to share several personal short stories and articles, and was able to ask several amazing Asian American musicians, artists and designers to share their stories.
The final thought before I officially “sign off”:
Sure, we all are individuals, but we are never alone. Every story has the potential to transcend boundaries and connect with other individuals. Keep telling your stories. Don’t be afraid to share. Your voice deserves to be heard and as long as you continue to express yourself, there will listeners. The process might take awhile; you’ll get the occasional hecklers. But trust in your voice, be shameless about your values, and stay relentlessly hopeful.
We wouldn’t be AA Limelight without you readers, interviewees, writers, artists and team players. If I could ever get the chance, I would love to meet and give you all a hug because I don’t think words are sufficient enough to express my gratitude. Sometimes, the world feels so big, yet so small (you know what I mean?)
I’m getting too sentimental now so I should stop writing…
I will always remember AA Limelight as one of the first places I was able to publish my written work, try my hand at interviewing and graphic design, and feel that my many opinions on Asian American culture could be heard. So much thanks to Steven for leading this project since the beginning, and all the work the team put into making a space for our voices. Much appreciation to the friends and followers who have supported us through this journey!
I joined AA Limelight around this time last year, and was really nervous and self-conscious of how my writing would be received. However, the more I wrote, the more I became inspired to write how I was really feeling—and about things that genuinely interested me. Whether or not my posts were received by a wide audience, I am so grateful for AA Limelight for inspiring me to and exciting me about the amazing Asian American trailblazers and media producers that are truly seeking change and agency in their representation.
I believe you’ve heard that through a series of unfortunate events
that it’s been decided to bring AA Limelight to an end this year. I
never thought that it was possible to explore one’s own Asian American
identity through the media but just within a year I’ve been able to
gain a grasp on this identity that’s eluded me for so much of my life.
Being a new writer for AA Limelight, I haven’t been here for long but
have still gained a great deal of love for this community that has
been created even before I came into it. Ya’ll made me feel welcome,
so I want to thank you all for tolerating my writing. I hope that
everyone knows that AA Limelight doesn’t end with the website but will
continue on in our hearts and our minds because we are the community
that is AA Limelight. Have a great year everyone and continue to learn
and share everything Asian American!
WHAT: CAAMFest, an 11-day celebration of film, music, food and digital media from the world’s most innovative Asian and Asian American artists.
WHO: The Center for Asian America Media presents CAAMFest (previously the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival, SFIAAFF), the nation’s largest showcase for new Asian American and Asian films, annually presenting approximately 130 works in San Francisco, Berkeley and San Jose. Since 1982, the festival has been an important launching point for Asian American independent filmmakers as well as a vital source for new Asian cinema.
WHEN: March 14-24
Hmong Clothes: The New Trend
The Hmong, a hill tribe that has its roots in the mountainous areas of China, Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand. The most current and significant event that greatly changed the lives of the Hmong was our participation in the Vietnam War. After the United States lost the war, the Hmong were abandoned to their own fate and was faced with persecution by the communist government of Vietnam. Villages were torched, men, women, and children were killed, and all their possessions were lost. There was no way out of this persecution but to run and leave the jungles of Laos, so they made their way to Thailand to seek refuge. Through the help of some American government programs, many of the Hmong were relocated. Some went to France, others to Argentina, but many came to the United States. Being an American born Hmong child, I tend to forget about the Hmong, or Miao, that live in China. Except, that isn’t the only thing forgotten as well. Slowly, but surely, many of the Hmong-American born are losing the knowledge to our very rich culture. I myself am one of those Hmong-American born.
After the war, the Hmong were easily forgotten by the mainstream world. The deeds that Hmong soldiers had performed during the war was left to gather dust and most definitely to be forgotten. From there the Hmong tried their best to assimilate into modern society and, at the same time, maintain their cultural practices which were, at times, very difficult to do. One of those very things that the Hmong are slowly losing is the skill to sew textiles, or paj ntaub. Back when many of the Hmong lived in villages, sewing was a necessary skill for the wives and daughters to know because had they not known how to sew, then the family would be without clothes. However, in this day and age, it’s much easier to produce clothes without the need to hand sew everything with one’s own hands. A lot of the clothes and embroidery sewn by the Hmong is very colorful and intricate and it varies from region to region where the Hmong live.