Matthew Johnson

Matthew Johnson is a half Chinese Canadian filmmaker and DJ from Vancouver. In 2009 he graduated from the Emily Carr University film program.

Artist's Statement
I was born in Vancouver and am of half Chinese and half European background. My interest in art and cultural identity led me to become a reader of Asian American art magazines such as Giant Robot, Ricepaper and Theme. These magazines promote Asian American artists and also discuss Asian American cultural issues. I had never seen a video with this subject matter and style so I thought that I would make one myself.

With Yabai (2009), I interviewed four definitive North American artists and cultural producers of Asian background. The film uses interviews, performance footage, archival footage and motion graphics to tells its story. Shooting in video allowed me to travel to artist locations such as Montreal, Vancouver, L.A, Hollywood, and Victoria on my modest budget. Yabai promotes and celebrates Asian North American artists, encourages solidarity and also gives insight into the subculture of Asian North American art. At the Emily Carr University External Graduation Show in 2009, Yabai recieved the honourable mention award.

In 2009, I graduated from the Emily Carr University bachelors of Media Arts program with a major in film, video and integrated media. Prior to that I received two cinematography scholarships to the Gulf Island Film and Television School. In 2007, I also completed an internship at the Vancouver International Centre for Asian Contemporary Art . I would like to expand on the world of Yabai, with more episodes and also online content.

Films by Matthew Johnson