Celestials of Saltwater City (2011) is a performance in the tradition of utsushi-e (Japanese phantasmagoria) – an eerie storytelling form that combines live narration and music with illustrated projections. Stories from seniors living in Vancouver’s Chinatown are compiled, re-interpreted and transformed into otherworldly divinity tales. This approach destabilizes prevailing historical portrayals of this group as nondescript, victimized and hapless labourers into that of mythic beings sourced from Chinese bestiaries. This collective narrative reanimates forgotten histories while alleviating the trauma haunting the psyches of the participants. 

Celestials of Saltwater City
Wooden projectors, illustrated transparencies, plexiglass slides, plywood frames, projection screen. 
live score by Dirty Beaches
video music: "Black Nylon" by Dirty Beaches
Performed at Centre A