Don Kwan turns to his own experiences and challenges of being a gay, third-generation Chinese Canadian artist as a way to ground himself in broader conversations about identity, representations, and intergenerational memory-making in the diaspora.
Kwan regularly draws from common and powerfully symbolic found objects and forms. He redeploys them in provocative and playful ways, delivering complex and nuanced concepts in an open framework for interpretation that evokes both familiarity and wonder.
Edward Kwan (China Doll)
Ed Kwan, an Ottawa-based performance artist, community builder, karaoke impresario, and drag performer, uses her over-the-top drag character, China Doll, to spread love, joy, and laughter. China Doll weaves humour into her everyday costumes and performances to broaden conversations about queer identity and culture.
Jolene is a Punjabi-Bollywood queen who moved to Canada from Punjab, India in 2016 to live her dream gay life. In 2021, she started doing drag in Whitehorse, where she earned the coveted title of Drag Divinity of the Yukon.
Since moving to Vancouver in late 2021, Jolene has been performing as the world’s first and only drag queen from Punjab. Her unique drag style includes many elements from her culture, attracting at least 27.9 followers on Tik Tok and influencing the South-Asian community with her videos. Known as the Bollywood Icon of the West Coast, Jolene has appeared on CBC, 5xPress, Fashion Magazine, and many other media. In Neon Night Garden Party, Jolene will serve you the magic of traditions and culture from South-Asia.
Kara Juku (they/she) is a non-binary drag artist, content creator and multi-faceted performer. They first debuted in 2019, in their hometown of Vancouver, Canada. Their performances often pay homage to her ancestral Vietnamese roots, bringing you closer to their inner world. In 2020, Kara was the first drag artist of Asian descent to be crowned the coveted title of Vancouver’s Next Drag Superstar and Vancouver’s Eastside Phenomenon in 2019 for their high-energy performances. Kara is a member of House of Rice, Vancouver’s all-queer Asian drag dynasty and drag child of Kendall Gender, a pillar in the Canadian drag community.
Carlyle, aka Lyle Chan, is an Artivist (Poet+Actvisit), Model and Community Leader. Lyle expresses his Artivism mainly through free-verse poetry. His work draws inspiration from his spirituality, geopolitical issues, and his Queer-Asian Community.
Lyle has fundraised for the Black, Indigenous, and Asian Communities for his #AsianIsHuman campaign. In May of 2021, CBC featured his activism in action, showcasing a series of his poems in support of Asian-owned businesses facing discrimination during the pandemic.
Lyle appeared in Pride Campaigns for Aritzia (June 12, 2021), the Vancouver Pride Society (July 6, 2021) and Saxx Underwear (July 28, 2021). Through his words and keeping his vibrations high, Lyle is creating a new path forward in #RepresentAsian and what it means to be a Queer-Asian person in 2022!
Maiden China is an intersectional non-binary feminist drag performance artist who disrupts identity expectations and liberates audiences by inducing vulnerability. Maiden China’s drag explores the concept of the “hyphen,” liminal states of embodied being, and incorporates elements of classical Chinese opera, queer theory, resistance politics, and intimate contact performance art. They perform regularly as a member of the House of Rice- an all Asian drag family in Vancouver, BC- as well as one of the Darlings, a non-binary drag performance collective.
Nancy Lee 李南屏, aka Which Nancy, is a Taiwanese-Canadian interdisciplinary media artist, DJ, curator, and cultural producer. Their work stimulates and enlivens space, making a provocative statement about how inescapably interconnected we are with our surroundings. The notion of social choreography is a constant in Nancy’s work and underpins their projects, from their early work as a filmmaker, through their conception of live events, and into the realms of XR, new media performance and installation, where their art practice continues to coalesce and evolve.
Normie Corp was founded because they missed dancing with their friends. In a time when social gatherings were very limited, they began to throw online parties. It was a way to safely bring people together when we were required to be apart. Since inception, they have taken pride in showcasing the tastes and talents of people who may typically have less opportunities to perform. Almost everyone who performs at their show falls under the QTBIPOC umbrella. Identities aside, their main goal is to throw sexy dance parties in both the URL and IRL realms.
Olivia is Treasure Green’s second generation tea master. She can’t remember a time when her father wasn’t making tea at home. It was a staple for her whole family. Growing up in Hong Kong, she found an appreciation for Chinese tea culture at a young age.
Quanah Style is Canada’s most infamous two-spirit trans artist, hailing from the cree nation. Star of “Quanah TransOp” on wow presents and season 2 of “Canada’s a Drag” on CBC, she recently shot her first feature film role in a movie called “Broken Angel,” and is in production on a few new TV projects slated for later this year.
One part fearless ClubKid and another part powerhouse entertainer, Ms. Style has blazed a train from coast to coast. From Vancouver to Toronto & LA, she has garnered attention and there are few dance floors who haven’t felt her presence. From her outfits and makeup to her music and show stopping performances, Quanah has proven she is a force to be reckoned with as a groundbreaking artist. Her debut album was listed as Billboard’s top 10 dance albums of 2020.
She has opened for Snotty nose rez kids, Hallucination, Peaches, Buffy St.Marie, Bif Naked and more.
Romeo is a Filipino, Chinese, Spanish, Canadian tattoo artist, singer-songwriter, actor, transgender advocate and model from Vancouver, B.C. As two diasporic Chinese performers, Hainafromchina and Horsegirl are honored to celebrate with you at Pride in Chinatown. Please wear dancing shoes 🙂
Romeo is the owner of Zen Tattoo in Richmond. He specializes in floral and Asian style tattoos, and he also specializes in ancient Filipino Baybayin script. When he was a child, his mother would often take him and his sisters to Chinatown. She immersed them in Chinese culture & traditions. These early experiences and his interest in Filipino history have influenced Romeo’s Tattoo Art & aesthetic. Romeo strives to inspire LGBTQ+ and Asian youth by being a voice for the Transgender & POC community.
Bio coming soon.
Paul Wong, Artistic Director
Artist and community advocate Paul Wong has been instrumental in developing artist-run centres in Vancouver and across Canada. He is the co-founding director of VIVO Media Arts Centre (Satellite Video Exchange Society, established 1973), a founder of Mainstreeters artist collective (established 1972), and a co-founding director of On Main Gallery (On the Cutting Edge Productions Society, established 1986), of which he is currently the Artistic Director. Paul is the president of Vancouver Art and Leisure and is on the advisory board of Pride in Art Society. He is also on the artist advisory committee for the Vancouver Art Gallery. Over the last four decades, he has curated, facilitated, produced, collaborated with, and mentored hundreds of artists and art projects across Canada and internationally.
Debbie Cheung, Producer
Debbie Cheung is a creative practitioner with an interest in writing and promoting arts and cultural events. Her background in communication design, marketing, and public relations has led her to work with various artists and organizations, including previous stints at the Satellite Gallery, UBC Museum of Anthropology, and Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden.
Christian Yves Jones, Media Production
Christian Yves Jones is a Philippine-born, New Zealand raised filmmaker. He was awarded a Vice Chancellor’s Scholarship, graduating from the Auckland University of Technology (NewZealand) with a Bachelor of Communication Studies. Christian’s projects are diverse; his experience spans from corporate videos, music videos, short films, video art installations, to live television broadcast.
Kimberly Ho, Stage Mama
Kimberly Ho 何文蔚 is an interdisciplinary artist, performer and collaborator based on the unceded ancestral lands of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and Tseil-waututh peoples, known as Vancouver. Growing up in a working class immigrant family, their work is nourished by collaborative processes and organically aims to be non-hiecharcial. In their artistic practice, Kimberly seeks to explore their Hakka diaspora through the physical body and food culture, framing new media as a dimension of queer futurisms, and immersive art as a site of liberation.