Celebrate diversity! Dec 15, Richmond Cultural Centre

Executive Director Ying Wang accepting the City of Richmond's 2012 Artistic Innovation Award for Cinevolution Media Arts Society.

The directors of the Garden City Conservation Society recommend the Celebration of Diversity at the Cultural Centre in Richmond, starting at 11 a.m. on Saturday, December 15, 2012. The invitation from Ms. Ying Wang (left) appears next. Ying is executive director of the Cinevolution Media Arts Society and also a director of the conservation society. Below the invitation, I’ll share my reasons for encouraging you to accept it.

Dear Friends of Garden City,

In keeping with the festive spirit of the season, Cinevolution Media Arts Society will be presenting Close Encounters: A Celebration of Diversity in Richmond on Saturday, December 15. This event at the Richmond Cultural Centre will feature Cinevolution’s signature mix of film, art and open dialogue on topics around cultural engagement.

TIME:       Saturday, December 15, 2012, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

VENUE:  Performance Hall, Richmond Cultural Centre, 7700 Minoru Gate, Richmond, BC

11 a.m.     Screening and DVD release of Lost Years: A People’s Struggle for Justice (in English and Chinese, each with subtitles). This epic documentary touches upon 150 years of the Chinese diaspora in Canada, USA, New Zealand and Australia.

1:15 p.m.  Slide presentation on Escape to Gold Mountain: A Graphic History of the Chinese in North America  by the author, David H.T. Wong.

1:45 p.m.  Community dialogue on the “power potential” of intercultural engagement and exchange. The dialogue will include commentary from David H.T. Wong, local poet Alan Hill, and Vancouver director/filmmaker Susanne Tabata.

2:45 p.m.  Book signing, Book & DVD sale

Lost YearsEscape to Gold MountainYing Wang is a lifelong conservationist, thanks in part to her mother, a pioneer of the green movement in China. While celebrating diversity, Ying encourages dialogue. She is conscious of commitment to conservation in the Asian-Canadian communities that is not well understood by most European-Canadians.

One way the gulfs will be bridged is through dialogue in diverse groups. In the Celebration of Diversity, the cultures that the Chinese Canadians brought and entered are very different from today’s. Only a small percentage of the Chinese-Canadian population in Richmond is descended from the early Chinese immigrants, so the new Chinese Canadians with very different backgrounds are learning along with the Canadians of other ethnic origins they dialogue with.

Another key reason we believe this Celebration of Diversity is valuable from a conservation perspective is that we see a common essence in the appreciation of cultural diversity and of ecological diversity. In both cases, it is natural for the diversity to have an enriching and strengthening effect. Once citizens start to think about the relationship between them, we believe that there will be mutual beneficial effects from the appreciation of cultural diversity and ecological diversity. For more, including bios, visit the Cinevolution information about this event.

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