About the Project

In conjunction with the opening of the Chinatown History Museum in the former P.S. 23, artist Tomie Arai created an installation consisting of silkscreened banners for the building’s majestic stairwell. Scrolls and street signs found in both contemporary and traditional Asian culture were the inspiration for the banners, which were assembled into public “pages” designed to be read by visitors while ascending and descending the five-story stairwell.


The banners highlighted three historical periods in Chinese-American history: the “bachelor society” of the early 1900s; the growth and expansion of the 1950s; and contemporary New York Chinatown.




Tomie Arai

Memories of New York Chinatown