of "We, Asian Sex Workers," artifacts and performances by
Performance artist, singer, writer, teacher, blogger, professional bisexual
and whore revolutionary. A member of SWOP in Los Angeles, founder of
SWOP at UCLA and touring activist and educator has spoken on sex work
issues, sexual violence and migrant sex worker issues at UCLA, USC,
and UC Riverside. Every purchase of Mariko Passion's artwork from this
show ($5-$1200) comes with a unique, private, conceptual art performance
in an adjacent space within the gallery.
Reagan Louie has exhibited his work throughout the United States, Europe,
and Asia. Museum exhibitions include; the Museum of Modern Art, the
Minneapolis Institute of Arts, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Hong
Kong Art Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego. His photographs
are represented in numerous museum collections including; the Metropolitan
Museum of Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Museum
of Modern Art. The New York Times named Louie's book, "Toward a
Truer Life", the photography book of the year. Louie is the recipient
of numerous awards including a Guggenheim and a Fulbright fellowship.
He is currently at work on a new project entitled, "Asia at the
TRACY QUAN is the author of "Diary of a Married Call Girl."
Her first novel, "Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl," has been
optioned by SONY Pictures. Her books are being published in 14 languages,
including Japanese, Turkish and Malayalam.
Praised by Reason magazine as "the only chick lit writer to discuss
indentured labor, sex worker rights and the proper purse in which to
carry a dildo," Tracy has written for Salon.com, Los Angeles Times,
San Francisco Chronicle, South China Morning Post and many other publications.
As a 21st century agony aunt, she has tackled vibrator addiction, miscegenation
and the challenges of first-time intercourse. She is frequently invited
to discuss issues concerning the sex industry. Venues include SFMOMA,
Open Society Institute, and Eyebeam (New York.)
A member of PONY (Prostitutes of New York) and the NSWP (Network of
Sex Work Projects), she lives in Manhattan, where she is currently writing
her next novel, "Diary of a Transatlantic Call Girl." Website:
Annie began working with Sex Workers Outreach Project in 2003, and helped
in the 2004 city ballot initiative to decriminalize prostitution in
Berkeley, CA. Her role in the Measure Q campaign was of gathering petition
signatures; attending meetings and debates, and performing lap dances
at key fundraising events to keep the campaign afloat, hence earning
her the title "political sex worker." Annie first became interested
in the sex workers rights while doing social service outreach work in
jails and Asian massage parlors. She is inspired by strong, uncompromising
women in the movement like Dawn Passar, Robyn Few, and Carol Leigh who
have committed their lives to advancing freedom for all women.
Annie grew up in San Francisco and has been advocating for positive
sexuality, drug education, and progressive youth issues since 1996 when
she served on the San Francisco Youth Commission. She currently serves
on the board of Health Initiatives for Youth (HIFY), whose organizational
mission is to serve underserved youth by meeting their most pressing
individual and community health needs, offering solutions through youth-driven
education and media; provider resource trainings; and advocacy.
Recent reports of toxic chemicals leeching from plastic and other synthetic
sex toys really put a downer on accessorized sex play. With enough risks
and hazards in the sex work industry (the most brutal one being criminalization),
the last thing a worker should have to worry about is his or her sex
This project emerges from the artist's pursuit of non-toxic pleasure
and her long time obsession with wood. The properties of natural hardwood
make it an excellent medium for sex toys. It is warm to the touch; bacteria
resistant; and has aesthetically sensual grains. Each piece in the exhibit
has been sourced from sustainable and/or salvaged wood, and has been
cured, hand fashioned, sanded, and finished with food-grade oil finish.
"Wood grains are mesmerizing and meditative. What is compelling
about using these hardwood toys for pleasure is that each piece was
once a live plant, and through love and craft I've fashioned each piece
for new life with a worthy function." --Annie Chen
Every purchase of Annie Chen's pieces from this show comes with a unique,
private, conceptual art performance in an adjacent space within the
Surgeon Scofflaw is a radical queer hapa and recently left her lifelong
home of Chicago for all points desert. She has worked in the sex industry
in just about every capacity since 1999. She has also done film, photo,
and performance work, and has begun to produce porn. She is a cellist,
song writer, fire dancer, flesh hooker, spoken word artist and used
to play in the long running Chicago art-punk ensemble Apartment Burlesque
Orchestra. She has taught workshops and spoken nationally on subjects
including race, sex work, direct action organizing, BDSM, and all their
myriad intersections. She digs church, motorcycles, organic foods, sustainable
consciousness, psychogeography, and her family. She is currently tearing
it up in Arizona raising up her young dangerbaby, making art work and
work into art.
Every purchase of SURGEON SCOFFLAW's pieces from this show comes with
a unique, private, conceptual art performance in an adjacent space within
The Girls of Banteay
Srei (Oakland, CA)
named after a famous citadel of women, a popular existing ancient temple
in Cambodia Banteay Srei is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping
young Southeast Asian women (ages 12-19) empower themselves. A project
based at the East Bay Asian Youth Center.
Ivy from Young Women's Empowerment Project (YWEP): Chicago, IL
artist, mother, creator, poet, activist, has been an active participant
and youth staff representing the YOUNG WOMENS EMPOWERMENT PROJECT- we
are all about harm reduction, peer education and social justice for
girls and young women ages 12-23 who have been impacted by the sex trade
and street economies.
We understand that the sex trade & street economy is a complicated
system of oppression, girls can have many different ways of being involved
whether it be trafficking, pimped, or for survival. We recognize that
Girls are leaders and are valued for their work and leadership in our
project! Call us for more info.
(773) 728-0127 and visit our new website : www.youarepriceless.org
In October of 2006 Meredith May wrote a 4 part series entitled "Diary
of a Sex Slave" which ran in the San Francisco Chronicle. Shortly
after the Korean Community responded with the outrage that the story
misrepresented Koreans but with no outrage that it misrepresented sex
workers, clients, and the portrayal of everyone's sexuality. Pervasive
media portrayals about the dark underworld of Asian sex slavery is not
In fact, it dates back to the 1800s in San Francisco. Both eras represent
an utter silencing of the voices of the workers themselves whether they
arrived at the work by force, by choice or probably some complex combination
of the two.
Mayor Gavin Newsom responded and said he has "growing intensity"
to curb the illegal sex trade, driven in part by what he once saw while
touring a massage parlor that offered sex: an elderly man on top of
a young girl. (Asian women and Sex Workers are constantly infantalized...)
Some politicians pushed a moratorium on all massage parlors thinking
that would be the solution. More talk of women and girls being raped.
More talk of the idea that prostitution is something that could and
should be abolished like homosexuality.
Global approaches to the sex trafficking problem has included the U.
S Agency for International Development (USAID) fund requiring grantees
to take a pledge an Anti-Prostitution Pledge which they claim will help
fight against HIV/AIDS. This past April, Randall Tobias, the mouthpiece
for this pledge and other morally driven approaches to sex from the
White House was recently exposed as a client of a notorious D.C madam
causing his early retirement from his position. It is clear that abolishing
prostitution does not apply to the policy makers but only to the sex
slaves, trafficked victims, their families who will continue to go without
resources and support no matter how they ended up in sex work.