For this project, I want to use food to explore cultural differences and the sense of “in-betweeness”. Although I have been in America for almost seven years, I have never identified with the country. I despise America’s limited food options, bland chicken breasts, horrible public transportations, and slow deliveries; and I am always missing my family and home foods in China. However, during the scarce times when I am finally home, I cannot stand the creepy old men staring at my bare legs, and the racist, misogynistic, body shaming, homophobic comments popping up everywhere. I do not feel belong to any physical place, and I am lost between the two countries.
I strive to question my cultural identity through this project. How Chinese am I even when I was born and raised in China? Although I never identified with America, I recognize that it has also shaped my values and identity.
I want to use food as a medium because it is so different across cultures. I am specifically using snacks from my childhood, and swapping the contents to American alternatives. I hope to attract the viewers with the commercial style photos and popping colors, and have them eventually realize the disconnect between the snacks and the wrappers.
I also created process videos of the photographs. For me, the videos represent how the two cultures shape my identity: I take parts of China and parts of America, and synthesize them to a final hybrid product.