Guide to the Vietnamese American Arts and Letters Association Collection MS.SEA.026

Processed by Julia Stringfellow; machine-readable finding aid created by Audrey Pearson; addition processed by Alix Norton; updated by Zoe MacLeod, 2021.
Special Collections and Archives, University of California, Irvine Libraries
(cc) 2021
The UCI Libraries
P.O. Box 19557
University of California, Irvine
Irvine 92623-9557
spcoll@uci.edu


Contributing Institution: Special Collections and Archives, University of California, Irvine Libraries
Title: Vietnamese American Arts and Letters Association collection
Identifier/Call Number: MS.SEA.026
Physical Description: 1.2 Linear Feet (4 boxes, 5 videocassettes, 1 OS folder) and 0.2 linear feet of unprocessed material.
Date (inclusive): 2002-2017
Abstract: The collection is comprised of organizational records and materials documenting events sponsored by the Vietnamese American Arts and Letters Association (VAALA). Items include those from the Fresh off the Boat (F.O.B.) art exhibit that presented works by 40 visual and performing artists and artistic groups of all mediums. Materials from the Vietnamese International Film Festival (VIFF) are also contained in the collection, such as programs, photographs, and descriptions of films being shown at the festival. The film festival is the first in the nation and worldwide to exhibit works by the Vietnamese diaspora, Vietnamese living outside of their homeland, and has been held at the University of California, Los Angeles, and the University of California, Irvine beginning in 2003.
Language of Material: English .

Access

Processed components of the collection are open for research. Unprocessed additions may contain restricted materials. Please contact the Department of Special Collections and Archives in advance to request access.

Publication Rights

Property rights reside with the University of California. Literary rights are retained by the creators of the records and their heirs. For permissions to reproduce or to publish, please contact the Southeast Asian Archive Librarian.

Preferred Citation

Vietnamese American Arts and Letters Association Collection. MS-SEA026. Special Collections and Archives, The UC Irvine Libraries, Irvine, California. Date accessed.
For the benefit of current and future researchers, please cite any additional information about sources consulted in this collection, including permanent URLs, item or folder descriptions, and box/folder locations.

Acquisition Information

Gift of Vietnamese American Arts and Letters Association, 2003-2005 and 2011. Additional gift of Yse Le, 2013.

Processing History

Processed by Julia Stringfellow, 2005. Processing was supported by a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) grant. Additional materials accessioned and processed by Alix Norton with assistance from Audra Eagle Yun, 2013.

Historical Background

The Vietnamese American Arts and Letters Association (VAALA), a community-based non-profit organization based in Orange County, California, was founded in 1991 by a group of Vietnamese American journalists, artists, and friends. VAALA's mission is to promote Vietnamese values in art, create opportunities for artists to interact with their audience, and facilitate communication among different ethnic groups through various forms of art. VAALA has organized numerous cultural events that include lectures, exhibits, book fairs, and concerts by world-class Vietnamese scholars and artists. These events help bring the arts and culture to the community.
The Fresh off the Boat (F.O.B.) art exhibit was held in September 2002 at the Nguoi Viet gallery in Westminster, California. F.O.B. was the first exhibit to incorporate all the major media of visual and performing arts presented by Vietnamese American artists who are under 40 years of age. The goal of the exhibit was to celebrate and empower the Vietnamese American identity through creativity. Media featured include painting, sculpture, photography, film, new genres, installation, performing art, video art, comic drawings, graffiti art, poetry/spoken word, music, and di-jing. F.O.B. interwove art, popular culture, and unpopular notions of identity into a controversial show that addressed discrimination, stereotypes, and struggles. The exhibit was part of a three-week long festival.
"Fresh off the Boat' is a label often attributed to immigrants who have not yet integrated into the mainstream American society. The art show was created to shatter stereotypes and empower the immigrant community, co-opting the term "F.O.B." for the immigrants' own use.
The Vietnamese International Film Festival (VIFF) was first held in 2003 and was the world's first film festival showcasing works on the Vietnamese diaspora. It was held at the University of California, Los Angeles, and the University of California, Irvine. The festival usually features about 100 films shown over a six-day period.

Collection Scope and Content Summary

The collection is comprised of materials from events sponsored by the Vietnamese American Arts and Letters Association (VAALA).
Items include those from the Fresh off the Boat (F.O.B.) art exhibit that presented works by 40 visual and performing artists and artistic groups of all mediums. The materials include information on the artists and their works, budget information, notes, a schedule of the exhibit, newspaper articles, and a Vietnam California Radio yearbook. Videotapes used for the exhibit are also included.
Materials from the Vietnamese International Film Festival (VIFF) are also contained in the collection, such as programs, photographs, and descriptions of films being shown at the festival. The film festival is the first in the nation and worldwide to exhibit works by the Vietnamese diaspora, Vietnamese living outside of their homeland, and has been held at the University of California, Los Angeles, and the University of California, Irvine.
Organizational records include meeting agendas and minutes, correspondence, event programs and announcements, digital files, and publications.

Collection Arrangement

This collection is arranged in 3 series:
  • Series 1. Fresh off the Boat (F.O.B.), 2002
  • Series 2. Vietnamese International Film Festival (VIFF), 2003-2005
  • Series 3. Organizational records, 1994-2007
The first two series of the collection are arranged alphabetically, either topically or by form of material. The organizational records series is an addition and is not arranged.
This collection also contains one unprocessed addition:
Accession 2018.005, 2011-2017. 0.2 linear feet

Subjects and Indexing Terms

DVDs -- 21st century.
Video recordings -- 21st century
Audiocassettes -- 21st century.
Vietnamese American art -- California -- Orange County -- Exhibitions -- Archives.
Motion pictures (visual works) -- 21st century.
Clippings -- 21st century.
Interviews -- 21st century.
Art, Vietnamese
Artists, Vietnamese
Online Archive of California

 

Fresh off the Boat (F.O.B.) Series 1. 2002

box 3, item MS-SEA026-A04

Cassette tape, F.O.B. show circa 2002

box 3, item MS-SEA026-A01

DVDs, Nguoi Tinh Gia (Pham Duy) The Old Lover, documentary film 2002

box 1, folder 1-2

"F.O.B.: A MultiArt Show" materials 2002

General Physical Description note: 2 folders.
box 1, folder 3

"F.O.B.: A MultiArt Show" newspaper articles 2002

 

VHS videocassette tapes

box AV-011, item MS-SEA026-V01-V02

Cinema symposium at the University of California, Los Angeles 2002

General Physical Description note: 2 tapes.
 

F.O.B. interviews

box 3, item MS-SEA026-V03

Hien 2002

box 3, item MS-SEA026-V04

Nguyen, Charlie 2002

box 3, item MS-SEA026-V05

Nguyen, Hien 2002

box 3, item MS-SEA026-V06

Nguyen, Tuan 2002

box 3, item MS-SEA026-V07

Pham, Simon Cuuong 2002

box 3, item MS-SEA026-V08

Phan, Van 2002

box 3, item MS-SEA026-V09

Vu, Thu Ha 2002

box 3, item MS-SEA026-V10

Vu, Victor 2002

box AV-011, item MS-SEA026-V11-V12

F.O.B. short films series 2002

General Physical Description note: 2 tapes.
box AV-011, item MS-SEA026-V13

Nguoi Tinh Gia (Pham Duy) The Old Lover, documentary film 2002

box AV-011, item MS-SEA026-V14

Shut Up White Boy, short film 2002

 

Vietnamese International Film Festival (VIFF) Series 2. 2003-2005

box 3, item MS-SEA026-A02-A03

DVDs, Vietnamese International Film Festival (VIFF) trailers 2005

General Physical Description note: 2 discs.
box FB-034, folder 10

Posters 2003-2005

box 1, folder 6-7

Programs, photographs, and festival materials 2003

General Physical Description note: 2 folders.
box 1, folder 8

Programs and festival materials 2005

box 2

T-shirt 2003

box AV-009, item MS-SEA026-V15

VHS videocassette tape, Vietnamese International Film Festival (VIFF) talk show 2003

 

Organizational records Series 3. 1994-2007

Physical Description: 0.4 Linear Feet1 box

Scope and Content Summary

This series includes digital files from the VAALA organization, brochures, event programs and announcements, meeting agendas and minutes, correspondence, and a book published by VAALA on Vietnamese boat people.
 

Digital files 2004-2006

Physical Description note: 3 discs.

Scope and Content Summary

Contains VAALA website information, secretary files, and files of Ysa Le.
box 1, folder 9

Archival originals

box 1, folder 10

Use copies

box 1, folder 11

"Building a Stronger America Together" brochure and note from President George W. Bush 2006

box 1, folder 12

Event programs and announcements 2005-2007

Scope and Content Summary

Contains programs and postcards from VIFF, gallery openings, lectures, and book events.
box 4, folder 1-6

Meeting notes and correspondence 1994-2000

Scope and Content Summary

Contains agendas, minutes, and notes from VAALA meetings as well as correspondence and other organizational records.
box 4, folder 7

The Forgotten Ones: a photographic documentation of the last Vietnamese boat people in the Philippines 2004

box 1, folder 4

Vietnam California Radio yearbook 2002-2003

box 1, folder 5

Vietnamese Diaspora Film Symposium, program materials 2004

 

Unprocessed addition 2018 Accession 2018.005 2011-2017

Physical Description: 0.2 Linear Feet(1 half letter document box)

Series Scope and Contents Summary

Contains photographs and ephemera, including posters, flyers, postcards, and other planning and publicity materials for VAALA programs and events. An exhibit catalogue for "Generations: 40 Hues between Black and White" show in 2015 is included.

Access

This addition to the collection has not been processed but is open for research. Please contact the Department of Special Collections and Archives in advance to request access.
box accn2018.005 001

Box 1 2011-2017

Scope and Contents Note

Photographs and ephemera, including posters, flyers, postcards, and other planning and publicity materials for VAALA programs and events. An exhibit catalogue for "Generations: 40 Hues between Black and White" show in 2015 is included.