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Seal of Approval

Digital print and gold foil seals
6’ x 6’
2013
Photographer: Troy David Photo

With Seal of Approval, I expose the double-edged sword of the “model minority.” Often ascribed to Asian Americans, the label both motivates and confines individual potential by privileging specific measures of success and ethnic characteristics. Visitors are invited to place gold foil certificate seals on a large portrait of the artist, referencing a Thai ritual in which gold leaf is rubbed on Buddha statues. The phrases printed on each seal, however, make us aware of these token gestures of praise that society enacts.