Illustrator Kezia Garbiella was part of a collaboration of artists asked to create a series of incredible posters for the American Asian Federation, Hope Against Hate ‘I’m really from’ campaign.
Hope Against Hate is the Asian American Federation’s landmark initiative combating AAPI hate with concrete safety programs in New York City and beyond. ‘Getting asked where you’re REALLY from in your own hometown is all too common in the AAPI community.” To flip the script, they highlighted 10 personal stories that show where Asian Americans are really from.
On first glance, they appear to be travel posters for far-away destinations. But a closer look reveals they’re actually posters for New York City, Houston, Seattle, San Diego, and St. Louis.
Kezia was asked to illustrate a poster for Suki Terada, an 86 year old, who grew up a Japanese American in Harlem, New York right at the peak of Japanese racism during World War II. This experience has left her with a wealth of fascinating stories and a unique perspective on her cultural and ethnic identity.
Kezia explained “Hearing Suki’s stories felt like a trip down memory lane. It’s New York but with so many traces of history and family struggle in every nook and cranny. This inspired me to translate them visually like a heavily congested road of nostalgia, starting from the stairs of Morningside Park and leading up all the way toward the sunset.”