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May We Know our Own Strength

Now On View in Meatpacking: Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya “May We Know our Own Strength”.

Installed during April for Sexual Assault Awareness Month, #MayWeKnow illuminates the stories of survivors of sexual and gender-based violence through an interactive installation. Sixteen internet-connected printers in the storefront at 401 W 14th Street relay anonymous survivors’ stories provided through an online submission form.

The installation is inspired by young people in New York City of Asian and Pacific Islander (API), and specifically South Asian descent, who are breaking their silence and sharing stories of sexual assault and gender-based violence

New Yorkers are invited to submit stories anonymously through the website MayWeKnow.NYC and watch them print almost immediately through the 24/7 live stream available to online viewers. Each submission activates a printer and lights a corresponding incandescent bulb, creating a visual representation of how many stories are received at any given time. An organic pool of anger, grief, shame, doubt, and hope will emerge from cascading ribbons of paper. 

Phingbodhipakkiya will seat herself at the base of the installation and begin a brief ritual to affirm human dignity and courage in the face of adversity. She will then weave these printed stories into the installation creating intricate hanging paper sculptures, growing abstract shapes, and natural textures. 

Each night at 8:00 pm, #MayWeKnow will honor the six Asian women who lost their lives in Atlanta with the names of all eight victims printed out followed by a eight-minute moment of silence.

The installation is brought to the district in partnership with The New York City Commission on Human Rights, in collaboration with the Commission and Public Artist in Residence (PAIR) Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya. 

Thank you to Taconic for providing the space at 401 W 14th Street. 

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