Press Releases

No Ocean Between Us: Art of Asian Diasporas in Latin America & The Caribbean, 1945–Present

January 12, 2022

For Immediate Release

Arthur Ross Gallery, University of Pennsylvania

International Arts & Artists: 202.338.0680


January 29 – May 23, 2022

The Arthur Ross Gallery at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA is pleased to announce No Ocean Between Us: Art of Asian Diasporas in Latin America & The Caribbean, 1945–Present, an exhibition that explores Asian migration to Latin America and the Caribbean and its influence on modern and contemporary art. No Ocean Between Us is on view at the Arthur Ross Gallery from January 29 through May 23, 2022.

Inspired by the permanent collection of the AMA | Art Museum of the Americas of the Organization of American States, No Ocean Between Us: Art of Asian Diasporas in Latin America & The Caribbean, 1945–Present features more than 30 important works by Latin American and Caribbean artists of Asian heritage. The exhibition demonstrates how this work emerged from cross-directional global dialogues between the artists, their Asian cultural heritages, their Latin American or Caribbean identities, and their interaction with major artistic movements.

Included in the exhibition are paintings, works on paper, sculptures, videos, and mixed media works by artists from Brazil, Cuba, Guyana, Jamaica, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago. Showcasing the work of influential artists such as Wifredo Lam, Manabu Mabe, and Tomie Ohtake, among many others, No Ocean Between Us demonstrates their vital but often overlooked contributions to the creative landscape.

Asian migration to the Americas resulted from labor shortages stemming from the United Kingdom’s abolition of its slave trade in 1807. The British, Spanish, and Dutch colonizers in the Caribbean, along with newly independent countries such as Peru and Brazil, brought workers from India, China, Indonesia, and Japan to meet the rising demand for labor. While most of these workers ultimately returned to their countries of origin, many settled in their new homelands, setting in motion the rich and complex histories of assimilation and exchange on view in this singular exhibition.

No Ocean Between Us has been made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the Human Endeavor. The exhibition was graciously supported by the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation.

Adriana Ospina is the Director of the OAS AMA | Art Museum of the Americas. She began at the AMA in 2008 as Educational Program Manager, and in 2014 was appointed Permanent Collection Curator. She also oversees AMA’s Archives of Modern and Contemporary Art of the Americas. Ospina is a Colombian art historian and holds an MA in art history from George Mason University.

Scheduled US tour dates for No Ocean Between Us: Art of Asian Diasporas in Latin America & The Caribbean, 1945–Present are as follows: Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, Kalamazoo, MI (October 24, 2020 – January 17, 2021); San Antonio Museum of Art, San Antonio, TX (February 12 – May 9, 2021); Art Museum of the Americas of the Organization of the American States, Washington, DC (June 5 – September 3, 2021); and the Arthur Ross Gallery, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA (January 29, 2022 – May 23, 2022).

No Ocean Between Us: Art of Asian Diasporas in Latin America & The Caribbean, 1945–Present was developed and organized for tour by International Arts & Artists, Washington, DC, in collaboration with the Art Museum of the Americas of the Organization of American States, Washington, DC.

International Arts & Artists in Washington, DC, is a nonprofit arts service organization dedicated to increasing cross-cultural understanding and exposure to the arts internationally, through exhibitions, programs and services to artists, arts institutions and the public. Visit

The OAS AMA | Art Museum of the Americas is the oldest museum of modern and contemporary Latin American and Caribbean Art in the United States. It is part of the Organization of American States (OAS), an international public organization whose aim is to promote democracy, peace, justice, and solidarity among its 35 member countries. AMA’s origins date back to the Visual Arts Unit of the Pan-American Union (now the OAS), and in the mid-twentieth century grew as one of the first catalysts for modern art in Latin America and the Caribbean. Today, AMA’s permanent collection has more than 2,000 works complementing and documenting this international focus.

Tomie Ohtake, Untitled, 1968, oil on canvas. © OAS AMA | Art Museum of the Americas Collection


Programs will be held at the Arthur Ross Gallery with limited attendance and live-streamed due to COVID-19 guidelines.

Friday, January 28, 2022 at 5:30 pm: Opening lecture, No Ocean Between Us: An Exhibition About Inclusiveness Across Ethnic Identities and Geographic Backgrounds by Adriana Ospina, Director, Art Museum of the Americas*

ID: 931 4218 9595
Passcode: 665608

Wednesday, February 2 at noon: 12@12, Catherine Bartch, Associate Director, Center for Latin American and Latinx Studies

ID 969 6208 0301
Passcode: 619161

Thursday, February 10 at 5:30 pm: PennYo concert

ID: 987 9977 8148
Pass Code: 975668

Tuesday, February 22 at 5:30 pm: Pan-Asian Dance Troupe performance

ID 945 5515 4002
Passcode: 402878

Wednesday, March 2 at noon: 12@12, Lynn Marsden-Atlass, Executive Director and University Curator

ID: 919 0260 8308
Passcode: 974137

Thursday, March 24 at 5:30 pm: Asian Diaspora and Migration to the Americas and the Caribbean: A Panel Discussion with Fernando Chang-Muy and Rupa Pillai. Moderated by Lynn Marsden-Atlass with Fernando Chang-Muy, Thomas O’Boyle Lecturer in Law, and School of Social Policy and Practice, and Rupa Pillai, Senior Lecturer, Asian American Studies Program

ID: 980 0422 3313
Passcode: 986340

Wednesday, April 6 at noon: 12@12, Siyuan (Alice) Zhao

ID: 918 1001 8024
Passcode: 038643

Thursday, April 7 at 5:30 pm: Migration and Empires in Latin America and the Caribbean:  How to Explain the Large Presence of Asians in the Americas by Evelyn Hu-DeHart, Professor of History, American Studies and Ethnic Studies, Brown University

ID: 968 6202 5168
Passcode: 823285

Wednesday, May 4 at noon: 12 @ 12, Fariha Khan, Co-Director, Asian American Studies Program

ID: 959 8902 7126
Passcode: 502940

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