Photographic Justice: A Tribute to Corky Lee (May 20-December 30, 2022)


Curated by Chee Wang Ng. Co-sponsored by the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU.

Chief Judge Margo K. Brodie is pleased to announce the opening of Photographic Justice: A Tribute to Corky Lee, a group photography exhibition at the Hon. Charles P. Sifton Gallery. 

Thirty photographers from across the United States pay homage to their beloved friend, colleague, and mentor Corky Lee, who passed away on January 27, 2021 due to complications from COVID-19. In addition, the Estate of Corky Lee lent a select number of photographs from its archives for the exhibition.

Lee was a passionate Chinatown community activist and a self taught photographer. During his extraordinary fifty years of covering an incredibly varied range of Asian American community life, Lee became known as the Undisputed, Unofficial Asian American Photographer Laureate.” 

Lee inspired a generation of Asian American photographers and community activists to document the life and struggles of everyday Asian Americans and fight against injustice, inequality, stereotyping, and discrimination. He was one of the founding members of the Basement Workshop, and was instrumental in the formation of the Coalition of Asian Pacific Americans. In 2014, he staged a reenactment of the 1869 Golden Spike ceremony, which marked the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad. He called this gathering of Asians and Asian Americans at Promontory Summit, Utah an act of “photographic justice.”

The photographs on view are rich and diverse in perspective; together they pay tribute to Lee and his life’s service to Asian communities across the United States. The exhibition features work by:

  • Lincoln Anderson
  • Tomie Arai
  • Chien-Chi Chan
  • Louis Chan
  • Edward Cheng
  • Alan S. Chin
  • Thomas Chin
  • Peter Ferreira
  • Stan Honda
  • Bob Hsiang
  • Joseph Hsu
  • Wing Young Huie
  • Yunghi Kim
  • Andrew Kung
  • Chang W. Lee
  • Eric Lee
  • Jook Leung
  • Jeenah Moon
  • Chee Wang Ng
  • Wai Ng
  • Joseph Songco
  • Teresa Tamura
  • Cindy Trinh
  • Alex Wong
  • Antony Wong
  • Dean Wong
  • Leland Wong
  • An Rong Xu
  • Marilynn K. Yee
  • Hai Zhang
  • Karen Zhou
  • With a selection from Corky Lee

The opening reception will take place on Friday, May 20, 2022, 6:00-8:00 p.m. RSVP. The exhibition run has been extended to Friday, December 30. 

This exhibition is the second iteration of Corky Lee on My Mind: A Photographic Tribute curated by Chee Wang Ng, Joanne Kwong, and Karen Zhou, and organized by Pearl River Mart in 2021.

Photo by Corky Lee. 20,000 New Yorkers in anti-Police Brutality March, Foley Square, New York, 1975.