"With my interpretation of the OzAsia Festival artwork, I aimed to inspire and represent the emerging Asian-Australian identity. To me, the presence of water holds significant importance in shaping the Australian landscape. It has been utilised by the traditional custodians of the land as a foundation for prosperity and growth. Water has also served as a symbol of welcome for migrant families from various origins, while holding deep connotations of life and purity within Asian cultures. The dynamic movement of water is a key element that I sought to capture in the vibrant energy of my artwork.
In my artistic practice, I often draw inspiration from traditional Chinese design, which I then contemporise to convey a fresh perspective. In this artwork, I chose to portray South Australia’s Leafy Sea Dragon as a means of bridging two cultures: the traditional dragon symbolising luck and strength, and a version of the creature that is indigenous to Australia. The modern Asian-Australian identity is inherently global and optimistic. To reflect this, I incorporated references to traditional Eastern medicine through the use of Meridian points and lines. These lines and pathways mirror the layout of modern transportation maps, symbolising the endless and universal avenues to discovering one’s identity and achieving global representation."
- Chris Yee, Perspective Pathways, 2023