#FromTheVCVault in 1994 Ugat Pilipino: Produced by Visual Communications and the International Channel, UGAT PILIPINO takes the viewer on a tour showcasing the broad range of Filipino American culture as expressed through music, dance, film and the visual arts. UGAT PILIPINO spotlights performing arts groups BIBAK Dance Ensemble, World Kulintang Institute, Fil-Am Family Cultural Group, and Kayamanan ng Lahi; rapper Reggie Nuesca; painter Papo de Asis; and filmmaker Dan Tirtiwinata. While 32 these artists work in distinct disciplines, they share the common goal of reclaiming Filipino culture and sharing it with the next generations of Filipino Americans. UGAT PILIPINO is an insightful overview of the rich variety and scope of contemporary Filipino American culture. To support our End Of the Year Campaign, visit our website in bio. #vconline #46yearsvc #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1993 Leslie Ito: Leslie Ito served as VC’s first-ever summer intern through the Getty Institute’s Multicultural Summer Internship Program. Following a stint as a grants analyst at the Ford Foundation in New York City, Leslie returned to LA to become VC’s program director and developed VC’s Armed With a Camera Fellowship for Emerging Media Artists in 2001. She then became Executive Director of Visual Communications until 2008. Leslie is currently the President and CEO of the Japanese American Cultural & Community Center. #vconline #46yearsvc #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1992 Moving The Image: Visual Communications published MOVING THE IMAGE: ASIAN PACIFIC AMERICANS IN THE MEDIA, in collaboration with the UCLA Asian American Studies Center. The publication is the first volume to document the remarkable body of film, video, and radio produced by Asian and pacific Americans from the 1960s to the 1990s. Fifty award-winning filmmakers, media artists, and writers speak firsthand to issues of generation and gender, ethnicity and nationality, which shape their imagery and identities. #vconline #46yearsvc #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1991 ChiliVisions: A community institution since its founding in 1986, ChiliVisions, VC’s summertime fundraising event, included presentation of the Steve Tatsukawa Memorial Award, in honor of VC’s visionary former Executive Director. In the photo, 1991 recipients Bill and Yuri Kochiyama are greeted by VC Boardmember Stephen Gong and Nobuko Miyamoto, founder of Great Leap, Inc. #vconline #46yearsvc #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1990 CLAIMING A VOICE: Visual Communications held a world premiere screening of Arthur Dong's CLAIMING A VOICE: THE VISUAL COMMUNICATIONS STORY.
CLAIMING A VOICE is a one-hour documentary chronicling the first twenty years of Visual Communications. Combining interviews with clips from over twenty Visual Communications films, this video traces the important role alternative media played in the Asian American movement. CLAIMING A VOICE shows how one grassroots organization survived budget cuts, Hollywood, and the collective process of the sixties to control their own images. The stories of Visual Communications members along with those of jazz fusion band Hiroshima, poet Lawson Inada, and actors Pat Morita and Mako are among the many in this documentary which reflect personal commitments to claiming a voice in media. #vconline #46yearsvc #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1989 SHIMON: Pictured here is a scene from Kaz Takeuchi’s 1990 video documentary SHIMON, an examination of Japan’s alien registration laws and how they marginalize Japanese residents of Korean descent. #vconline #46yearsvc #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1988 Education is a Right: As part of the documentary APSU: EDUCATION IS A RIGHT, VC staff members Dean Hayasaka, Linda Mabalot, and Supachai Surongsain interview a young student activist at a regional meeting of the statewide Asian Pacific Student Union at CSULA.
The focus of this collaboration between activists/ filmmakers Linda Mabalot (MANONG) and Stann Nakazono (E-Z ROCK: ASIAN AMERICAN BREAKDANCER) is the rise of a new generation of Asian Pacific American student activists in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark 1978 Bakke Decision. Interviews with founders and activists involved with the statewide Asian Pacific Student Union (APSU), former student activists, educators, and local and national politicians paint the portrait of the next generation of Asian Pacific American activists and how grassroots activists began the long process towards empowerment and full participation in America’s social, cultural, and political processes. #vconline #46yearsvc #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1987: John Esaki, former Visual Communications staffer, films a group of hopkido students as they go through their moves during production of a video project on Japanese American culture commissioned by the Los Angeles Children's Museum. #vconline #46yearsvc #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1986 NO VACANCY: News reporter Naomi Hirahara is assisted on location camera shooting techniques by Cheng-Sim Lim while making her documentary NO VACANCY as part of VC’s Filmmakers Development Program.
NO VACANCY is about how two Asian American middle-aged men, faced with the depletion of low cost housing, find ways to survive in downtown Los Angeles’ Little Tokyo and Chinatown. This documentary is a poignant view of a segment of Asian American underclass rarely talked about. #46yearsvc #vconline #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1985: Visual Communications turned 15! Pictured above (from left): Estella Figueroa, Kaz Takeuchi, Janice D. Tanaka, John Esaki, Linda Mabalot, and Amy Kato celebrated VC's anniversary in Little Tokyo with The Lack-a-Tones. #46yearsvc #vconline #supportVC
Get Our Filmmakers Back In Action!
It's #GivingTuesday, and our Digital Histories filmmakers have turned into mannequins! They won't be able to move until we reach our End-of-Year fundraising goal. Donate today to get them back in action! Link in bio. #vconline #46yearsvc #supportVC #mannequinchallenge
#FromTheVCVault in 1984: While not one of the four founders of Visual Communications, Steven Tatsukawa brought his interests in media making and social justice to the VC mix. Fondly referred to as the APA independent cinema community’s “Will Rodgers” for his earnest sense of humor, Tatsukawa produced many of VC’s late-1970s productions and served as Executive Director until his untimely passing at age 35 in 1984.
From the last issue of Gidra, a monthly newspaper that dealt with Asian Pacific American community events and other related issues and themes (published from 1969 until 1974): "Steve Tatsukawa, who made his mother very happy when he got perfect attendance at Henry Clay Junior High School, personifies someone who is able to relate to people. In the four years that he's been with Gidra, he has never demonstrated anger toward people, and is endowed with the ability to make people laugh and to make them feel good. Steve says that when people think of revolution, they conceive of it as being the equivalent of political upheaval. "In essence they are correct in their assumptions, for revolution does mean political upheaval or change or overthrow or substitution," he agrees, but adds, "but it means much, much more." He explains.
No revolution has ever succeeded unless it was carried through by people with total revolutionary intent. Today in America, this type of person is now emerging. The foundations of American culture have been rejected by many: the materialism, the profit-motive, the competition, the basis of western culture as we know it.
The importance of the situation lies in the fact that we are witnessing an old culture dying and a new culture being shaped. This is a rare occurrence in history. And we, the movement people, have the responsibility of shaping the new way of life. It will be shaped not by writing or talking or thinking about it. The new way of life will come about by living it. Live the Revolution!
The creative mind of Steve Tatsukawa has played a vital role in the growth of Gidra." #46yearsvc #vconline #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1984: A large-scale photographic exhibit documenting the sixty-year history of Filipinos in California, PLANTING ROOTS was launched in 1984 and depicts the immigration of Filipinos, their contribution to California labor history, and the settlement of their communities from the 1920s through the 1960s. Informative text condensed from oral histories and academic research accompanies the photographs which are attractively mounted on free-standing display panels. The first pictorial display of its kind, PLANTING ROOTS eloquently captures the beginnings of Filipino American heritage for all ages. Learn more at www.vconline.org. #vconline #46yearsvc #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1983: The First Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival. The first-ever edition of what would become the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival was held at the newly-opened Japan America Theatre, and was graced by the presence of Stephen Ning (shown with VC staffer Amy Kato), who hitch-hiked cross-country from New York City to premiere his featurette FRECKLED RICE. #vconline #46yearsvc #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1981- Quiet Thunder: Pictured here is an interior scene from QUIET THUNDER, an unfinished Visual Communications production produced by Linda Mabalot. The film was based on the book AMERICA IS IN THE HEART, a semi-autobiographical novel written by Filipino American immigrant poet, fiction writer, short story teller, and activist Carlos Bulosan. #46yearsvc #vconline #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1980: Duane Kubo and Robert Nakamura's HITO HATA: RAISE THE BANNER (1980) is VC's first foray into long-form narrative filmmaking. With production starting in 1979, the story is led by a cast including legendary APA acting luminaries as Mako, Pat Morita, and Yuki Shimoda, drew upon the realities of Little Tokyo redevelopment struggles throughout the 1970s and the displacement of longtime Japanese American residents as gentrification set in. This excerpt from the 94 minute film depicts the first meeting of Oda (Mako) and Tatsumi (Hiroshi Kashiwagi), two Issei laborers, during the 1934 Nisei Week Grand Parade. To execute this scene and others like it throughout the film required the consent and goodwill of local Little Tokyo businesses to allow street closures of Little Tokyo to allow filming — a policy that was rarely granted by Little Tokyo businesses even today. #46yearsvc #vconline #supportVC
#FromTheVCVault in 1978 - Omai Fa'atasi: Samoa Mo Samoa Directed by Takashi Fujii, OMAI FA'ATASI: SAMOA MO SAMOA was released by VC in 1978. Centered around the Carson, CA-based youth development center of the same name, OMAI FA'ATASI: SAMOA MO SAMOA weaves interviews with youth organizer Simi Potasi and others to present a portrait of a unique Southern California community whose family and spiritual values are challenged by the pitfalls of contemporary American culture. #46yearsvc #vconline **Please note, we want to apologize to the filmmaker as we recently posted this caption with the wrong photo.
#FromTheVCVault in 1978- Manong
Directed by Linda Mabalot, MANONG (1978) was one of the first VC productions produced using industrial video technology, and signaled a transition from celluloid-based film production for the organization. Themanong were the first wave of Filipinos who came to the United States to find work. MANONG dramatically portrays their lives as captured in the writings of Carlos Bulosan, unveiling the manongs‘ contribution to America’s agricultural and service industries and the struggle to build a Filipino community. MANONG tells the stories of their decades in the farmland and canneries on the West Coast and the effects of the bachelor society that lingers today. #vconline #46yearsvc
#FromTheVCVault in 1978 - Omai Fa'atasi: Samoa Mo Samoa Directed by Takashi Fujii, OMAI FA'ATASI: SAMOA MO SAMOA was released by VC in 1978. Centered around the Carson, CA-based youth development center of the same name, OMAI FA'ATASI: SAMOA MO SAMOA weaves interviews with youth organizer Simi Potasi and others to present a portrait of a unique Southern California community whose family and spiritual values are challenged by the pitfalls of contemporary American culture. This excerpt from the 30-minute broadcast video program introduces Potasi as he provides a capsule history of the growth of the Samoan American community in Los Angeles' South Bay region, and reveals the many challenges facing Samoan youths and young adults. #vconline #46YearsVC
#FromtheVCVault 1977: project directed by Alan Ohashi and written by historian Franklin Odo, IN MOVEMENT: A PICTORIAL HISTORY OF ASIAN AMERICA was Visual Communications' first major pursuit into book publication. The book is a visual journey through the extension of the Asian American experience from past to present, watching people work, build, laugh and cry; struggling and settling in the United States. The pictures and stories of Asian Americans bring out what is common to each of our histories and shares the lessons of the past to create a more equitable and compassionate society. #vconline #46yearsVC