my Da Lu - PhMuseum

my Da Lu

Nelson Chan

2005 - 2014

The immigrant experience through explorations of migration, longing, labor, dreams, and sacrifice are the themes that propel my vision. They are rooted in my own life’s identity and experience of being the son of two economic immigrants trying to create and maintain their own version of “The American Dream”. My work is a meditation on the concepts of losses and gains that is congruous to the life of most immigrants; when hope is presented and felt in one’s hands, it quickly slips through your fingers.

For the past eight years, I have traveled between the United States and China photographing the daily operations of my parents’ toy business and their shifting relationship as business partners and lovers. This project is a sequence of images taken in my family’s homes and offices on two continents, in two completely different cultures. Though primarily a story about the unfolding latter half of my parents’ lives, it is also the exploration of my relationships between my family and these places.

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