Interwoven identities: Intersectionality in Asian Mental Health

Our thoughts are personal. 

They can help us explore the external unknowns, reaching the corners of the barren tundra, the impenetrable rainforests, the abyssal oceans, and even the unfathomable outer space. At the same time, our thoughts have the power to bring us inward and prompt us to interrogate the meaning of our very existence. 

While our thoughts are deeply personal, they also mirror the ways through which we were brought up. People with whom we interact, parents, relatives, and even friends on a playground, have informed the way we peer through the veil that conceals the society in which we live and navigate through ourselves.

Sometimes, the inward and outward nature of our thoughts are at odds with one another. 

Inwardly, our thoughts, conscious or unconscious, voluntary or involuntary, could weigh on us. Such a burden could become so heavy that it immobilizes us, preying on our minds until we yearn for an escape. 

Outwardly, the unspoken sociocultural taboos shackle our minds, thwarting the escape, and creating a feeling of entrapment, which only amplifies the burden that we have to bear. 

Mental health challenges are deeply personal, yet they're also influenced by the sociocultural norms of our upbringing. These dynamics can sometimes feel overwhelming and can manifest into a sense of entrapment. However, it's important to remember that while our experiences differ, sharing and learning from each other's journeys can reveal pathways to break free from these burdens.

The Asian Arts and Culture Trust (AACT) aims to create a safe space for creatives to share their experience - to break away from the sociocultural taboos and to empower through collective healing. We welcome artwork submissions that explore diverse perspectives and experiences and delve into the complexities of Asian Mental Health. AACT’s Interwoven ldentities: Intersectionality in Asian Mental Health project aims to create a safe space for discourse on mental health and raise awareness for culturally competent care for Asian communities residing in Toronto.


Artists are encouraged to explore and draw inspiration from, though not restricted to, the following prompts when creating their submissions:

Cultural Stigma and Taboos:
How does cultural stigma surrounding mental health affect Asian community members? 

Navigating Dual+ Realities:
How do individuals navigate between 2+ worlds, and what impact does this have on their well-being?

Intergenerational Dynamics:
How do intergenerational dynamics across generations within Asian families and communities influence mental health?

Access to Care and Resilience:
What are the barriers in accessing mental health care and resources? How do cultural practices and community support contribute to resilience?

Cultural Narratives and Representation:
Explore the representation of mental health in Asian cultural narratives, literature, and media. How can we challenge stereotypes and reshape these narratives to reflect diverse experiences?

How do factors such as ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and generational differences intersect with experiences of mental health within the Asian diaspora? How do intersecting identities influence experiences of mental health and access to support?

Art and Mental Health:
Explore the relationship between your art practice and your mental health for the artist themself.  Artists are encouraged to interpret these prompts in their own unique ways, drawing from personal experiences, research, and imagination to join this discourse to foster reflection, empathy, and dialogue surrounding Asian Mental Health.


-Artists must be Toronto-based Asian diaspora.
-Welcome submission exploring the theme of Asian Mental Health through all mediums.
-Accepted submissions will be featured on AACT’s online gallery platform, Manifesto Space.
-Select accepted submissions will be presented in an onsite exhibition in Toronto, paid per CARFAC guideline.


-5-10 images of your work.
-A brief statement of your practice and what topics you are interested in exploring in this discourse (250 words maximum).
-A short bio (250 words maximum).

Submissions must be sent to with the subject line [first and last name] Asian Mental Health Project Submission by July 28, 2024 11:59pm. 

Asian Arts and Culture Trust (AACT) and Manifesto Space are committed to providing a platform for diverse voices and fostering dialogue on vital social issues. We look forward to receiving your submissions.For inquiries and submissions, please contact


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