The following artists challenge anti-Asian racism by combatting stereotypes, creating spaces for inclusion and celebrating AAPI achievements.

Yifan Luo

As a first-generation Asian-American who has grown up in variety of predominantly white spaces, my sense of identity continues to shift and evolve. The COVID-19 pandemic spurred uniquely complicated associations and experiences for many Asian-identifying people in Maryland and beyond, and for many it became a time for meaningful self-reflection, education, and action. AAPI Role Models is a series of portraits of Asian-heritage artists and activists started during Asian-American Heritage Month (May 2021). This series is an ongoing passion project seeking to acknowledge and celebrate the important work these women have done and continue to do. Outside of my own family, I had few Asian role models growing up, and hope that this series helps introduce others to some of the many AAPI and Asian-heritage powerhouses who have influenced my own work and activism in recent years.

Yifan Luo is a Baltimore-based illustrator with a passion for visual reportage and storytelling. She holds a BA from Brown University and an MFA in illustration practice from the Maryland Institute College of Art. Yifan draws inspiration from the people, environments, foods and memories of the places she has traveled and lived. She is particularly interested in editorial, publishing and sequential projects that explore current events, intersectional environmentalism and multiculturalism.

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Momma Rain

Chinoiserie: Portrait of a Woman with Chinese Motifs in background, relating to how as an Asian American one culture can be overwhelmed by others.

Don’t Shoot! I’m a Brown American: Representing my feelings of being a minority in America.

Momma Rain has been creating art since forever, reflecting the way she sees and experiences the world in her own unique way. As a first generation Filipino-American, who grew up in Maryland around the suburbs of DC, spent time in Baltimore and now resides between Baltimore and Annapolis, her art reflects who she is and her experiences being a minority in Maryland. She primarily works in acrylics painting portraitures of faces and people around her who, like who, reflect the many faces of America.

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