Asian Heritage Month Poster


Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario


Poster titled "Asian Beyond Asia: Celebrating Asian Heritage Month 2023" featuring a yellow background, a blue-green circular design in the center, and three silhouettes - two adults and one child. Includes event details and logos at the bottom.

Asian Heritage Month was established in the '90s to reflect on and recognize the many contributions that people of Asian descent have made and continue to make in Canada.

With the rise of anti-Asian violence and growing nationalism, recognition of this month, in social justice spaces, is also about honouring Asian resistance globally, and challenging the colonial boundaries and ideas of what it means to be “Asian.”

The Need

To recognize this month in elementary classrooms across Ontario, we were approach to create a printed poster and digital collateral to:

  • observe and celebrate Asian Heritage Month in accessible and age-appropriate ways;
  • further the conversation on what it means to be Asian; challenging colonial borders and boundaries and unpacking complex histories; and
  • create spaces for inclusive dialogue.

The Approach

To approach this work, we drew on our own personal experiences grappling with the concept of Asian-ness and developed a framing that imagined belonging beyond colonial and imperial borders.

The Idea

Asian beyond Asia
As we honour and celebrate Asian Heritage Month through a critical and decolonial lens, we are called to challenge the very idea of “Asia” and its bounds. The historical and cultural construct of Asia is understood and experienced in complex ways both within the continent, and the diaspora, and, similarly, the notion of “Asian” moves beyond time and space; it is actively being imagined and re-imagined through the formation of regenerative and evolving new cultures.

In this concept, we use marbling as a visual analogy for new formations and connections. The process of marbling begins with drops of ink which are then pushed and pulled across wet paper to create new form. The new forms retain a connection to the original shape, sometimes in ways that are obvious and sometimes in ways that are more subtle. Ink can mix with other colours, creating unique patterns that weren’t present originally. Here we see a representation of a globe (a) with borders and boundaries being shifted and re-imagined, or typography (b) implying the same process.

Through this framing, we created a printed poster and digital collateral. The sense of movement and figures are a nod to the critical work that members of the Asian diaspora are doing to create more inclusive worlds for us all.

A vibrant yellow poster on a white wall reads "ASIAN BEYOND ASIA" and "Celebrating Asian Heritage Month 2023" with a globe and silhouettes of people. The poster is next to a tall potted plant, and a bunch of colored pencils is visible below the poster.

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