August 19, 2009
Artist Kip Fulbeck, professor of art at the University of California, Santa Barbara, will be presenting the Hapa Project at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 3 in Petters Auditorium, Benedicta Arts Center at the College of Saint Benedict, St. Joseph, Minn. His presentation will include slam poetry, stand-up comedy, political activism and personal stories.
An exhibit of the Hapa Project will be open to the public in the Petters Lobby, Benedicta Arts Center from Sunday, Aug. 23 through Friday, Sept. 18. The exhibit includes more than 30 photographs.
Admission to both the presentation and exhibit is free and open to the public.
Fulbeck began the Hapa Project as a forum for Hapas (people who have a mixed racial heritage that includes Asian or Pacific Island decent) to explore the question, “What are you?” The term Hapa - a Hawaiian word meaning “half” - was once considered a derogatory term. The word has transformed into a term of pride for those with part Asian or Pacific Island ancestry. Fulbeck, who calls himself Hapa in his new book, Part Asian, 100% Hapa, looked at multiracial identity in a new perspective as he photographed people from all walks of life.
He has been featured on CNN, MTV and PBS, and has performed and exhibited in over 20 countries. Identity, multiraciality and pop culture are a few of the topics Fulbeck addresses in his speeches.
In addition to writing Part Asian, 100% Hapa, Fulbeck is the author of Permanence: Tattoo Portraits; Paper Bullets: A Fictional Autobiography; and the upcoming Mixed: Portraits of Multiracial Kids, He has also directed a dozen short films, including Banana Split and Lilo & Me.
Fulbeck’s exhibition and presentation is being organized by several groups at the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University, including Student Activities and Leadership Development, Orientation Programming, the Intercultural Center and the International Students Program Office. Numerous other campus organizations and departments are co-sponsoring the event.