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Gianna Cheok Tong Chun ’21 is the 34th recipient of the Jan Meyer '87 Photography Traveling Fellowship

June 02, 2021

We are pleased to announce that Gianna Cheok Tong Chun ’21 is the 34th recipient of the Jan Meyer '87 Photography Traveling Fellowship. Her application was selected by a faculty panel from an array of outstanding proposals. 

Gianna's proposal, “To Excavate, to Honor, to Remember,” will use photography, moving image, and audio to trace the lost histories of the artist’s family migration route fleeing the Chinese Communist Revolution to Hong Kong. Gianna writes

This project explores my ancestral homeland; retracing the migration route my grandparents and their families took fleeing from villages in South China to Hong Kong due to the Communist Revolution. Forced migration and the ultimate decision to take this uncertain and laborious journey is an all too common experience. We do it for our family, our livelihood; escaping suffering for a better future. Now 60 years later, I have grown up in a space 'between many cultures' with no tie to a ‘homeland', but with the hope to never forget their hardships that led me to this point of my life. 'To Excavate, to Honor, to Remember' is a homage to not only my family who made this tumultuous journey, but to honor the millions of families seeking a better future for a cause far beyond them, for generations to come."

Examples of the artist's past work may be viewed on her website -  

Given the continued challenges of COVID-19, Gianna’s project will commence at such time that public health permits safe international travel. Accordingly, her fellowship year may be extended as needed to accommodate these extraordinary times. The fellowship work will be exhibited in MICA’s Main Zero gallery once the timetable of the pandemic permits.  

The fellowship is made possible by an endowed gift from Janis Meyer, an alumna of #MICAphoto, and is awarded annually for a graduating BFA Photography major to travel to make a new body of photographic work. This year marks the 34th anniversary of this generous fellowship. We honor Jan’s memory and thank the Meyer family for their support in empowering our students.