Hi, I'm Sammy Yuen, a visual artist and martial artist. I was fortunate enough to quickly combined my personal life and professional life to serve the community during the rise of anti-Asian hate. As a life-long martial artist I modified my training and developed free self-defense classes for the community.

As a visual artist I used my artwork to create drawings of the community. I hope these drawing amplify underrepresented stories and provide a long-term solution to anti-Asian hate by creating conversation and empathy, eliminating the need for self-defense classes. My goal is to educate, empower and inspire others through my work.

The first piece I created in my journey into art activism was of Yu and Me Books. It's incredible that what started as a drawing of a building lead to a drawing of a neighborhood, then to a drawing of an iconic highway, and then to Chinatowns nation wide. To me Chinatowns represent the start of the American Dream for many immigrants. Eventually I would like to use my art to research the effect of war on immigration to create empathy for anyone who has had to flee their homeland. 

I like to think of my pieces as a conversation starter. I want to create atmosphere with each drawing and invite people in to share their own personal experiences with each piece. For example I know Chatham/Kimlau Square has a total different meaning to me than it does to others. Chatham/Kimlau Square is where my father immigrated to America to start his American Dream. During world war 2 he was separated from his mother at the tender age of 6, and eventually made it from Canton China to Hong Kong by himself. When he was old enough to get a job he worked on an ocean liner that sailed around the world. When ship docked in New York City he got off and never got back on. 

I have included some of my personal stories in the descriptions of the pieces. Please feel free to reach out and share any relevant stories you may have.