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Workshop: Migrations & Melancholia

May 15 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm PDT

On Wednesday, May 15th, 6-8pm join Massy Arts and Living Hyphen in a writing workshop paying homage to that melancholia we feel through migration. No writing experience is necessary. Only an open heart and an open mind with a readiness to give and receive vulnerability.

Venue & Accessibility

The event will be hosted at the Massy Arts Gallery, at 23 East Pender Street in Chinatown, Vancouver. We are located in the former MING WO building, which is still the name on the facade of our building.

Registration is sliding scale. (Suggested donation $20-40) There are 12 spots available. Please register here: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/migrations-melancholia-tickets-885193957957?aff=oddtdtcreator

The gallery is wheelchair accessible and a gender-neutral washroom is on-site.

Please refrain from wearing scents or heavy perfumes.

For more on accessibility including parking, seating, venue measurements and floor plan, and how to request ASL interpretation please visit: massyarts.com/accessibility

Covid Protocols: Masks keep our community safe and are mandatory (N95 masks are recommended as they offer the best protection). We ask if you are showing symptoms, that you stay home. Thank you kindly

About Living Hyphen: Living Hyphen is a community and multimedia platform that explores the experiences of hyphenated Canadians. Through art and writing, we uncover what it means to live in between cultures as individuals who call Canada home but with roots elsewhere.

We publish a magazine and host a podcast featuring the voices of artists and writers all across Canada. Our stories have been adapted into a stage play with Canadian Stage as part of their Dream in High Park program. Most importantly, we deliver cultural programming by way of writing workshops and storytelling nights to encourage courageous and tender storytelling within our communities.

Learn more at www.livinghyphen.ca.

About Our Facilitator: Justine Abigail Yu (she/her) is the founder of Living Hyphen, a community that explores what it means to live in between cultures as a hyphenated Canadian – that is, an individual who calls Canada home but who has roots elsewhere.

She is an award-winning workshop facilitator whose work with Living Hyphen has been featured on national and local media outlets including the Globe & Mail, CTV National, and the CBC. She was also named a “Changemaker” by the Toronto Star in October 2021.

Justine Abigail is a fierce advocate for equity and anti-oppression. Her mission is to stir the conscience and spur social change.

Workshop Description: Migrations & Melancholia

In 1917, Sigmund Freud wrote an essay called “Mourning And Melancholia” about World War I. According to Freud, mourning happens immediately when we lose something or someone. But then there is melancholia, which is never-ending; a mourning without end.

80+ years later, David Eng and Shinhee Han, coined the concept of racial melancholia, an ongoing mourning as it relates to our identity. Those of us who are living as part of the diaspora never quite properly mourn or “get over” the losses of our homeland, of our language, of our culture. As assimilation is a never-ending, always-evolving process, so too is this sense of loss.

In this writing workshop, we pay homage to that melancholia we feel through migration – however far back that might go in our history. Through writing prompts, story sharing, and conversation, we will explore the intricate complexities of living in between cultures and the grief and gratitude that may come from that experience.

No writing experience is necessary. Only an open heart and an open mind with a readiness to give and receive vulnerability. We’ve carefully and intentionally designed this workshop to be intimate and generative. We’ll give you writing prompts to spark your creativity in a safe and positive environment. All writing materials will be provided.

Our Approach: At Living Hyphen, our workshops aim to cultivate courageous and tender storytelling. Each workshop attendee will practice writing their stories freely and unedited with the support of fellow writers. It will lay the foundation for future writing, while also training us on how to actively listen to others and find the value and power in every single story.

It will be guided under the Amherst Writers & Artists method that emphasizes that every person is a writer, and every writer deserves a safe environment to experiment, learn, and develop their craft.

In the spirit of the AWA method, the workshop aims to impart the following values:

– Everyone has a strong unique voice.

– Everyone is born with creative genius.

– Writing belongs to all people.

– Teaching can be done without damage to a writer’s original voice or self esteem.

– A writer is someone who writes.


May 15
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm PDT
Event Category:


23 East Pender Street
Vancouver, BC Canada
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