Saturday, March 12, 2011

Henry Chan

Mr Henry Chan, History Department, the University of Newcastle, Australia

Cultural Collections, Callaghan NSW, Australia
History; Henry Chan; University of Newcastle
This photo appeared in the University News, Volume 12, Number 1, February 17 to March 3, 1986. The text was: "Reporting on Racial Tensions An academic who has been commissioned to inquire into Chinese perceptions of racial tension in New South Wales has taken up duty as Lecturer in History. Mr Henry Chan will teach Chinese and Japanese History to History Classes. This course, which was given by Dr. John Bach before his retirement last year, is unique in Australia, Mr Chan says, because in addition to combing studies of the countries it devotes attention to their very early beginnings. He has the commission from the Human Rights Commission and the Chinese Community Association of N.S.W. Mr. Chan comes to this University from the University of Sydney, where he was a librarian in the Rare Book Library. His wife is an Associate Professor in English at the University of New South Wales. He was a school teacher in New Zealand before becoming a Lecturer in History at Massey, University, Palmerston North. He holds a M.A degree in Massey and an M.A. in Far Eastern History in the University of London. For the last five years, Mr Chan has been Hon. Secretary of the centre for Asia Studies at the University of Sydney. He is presently involved in making arrangements for the fourth International Conference on the History of Chinese Science to be held at the University in May. Mr. Chan surprised the NEWS by stating that his principal subject speciality is no Far Eastern History, but the History of European Science and Political Thought in the 17th and 18th Centuries. He developed this special interest while he was living in New Zealand." This image was scanned from a photograph in the University's historical photographic collection held by Cultural Collections at the University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia. If you have any information about this photograph, or would like a higher resolution copy, please contact us or leave a comment.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Home in the hills

It's a good thing Danny Young likes cooking. She prepared a feast for the Western New Year on January 1, another for this week's Chinese New Year and will create 10 or more dishes for the four-day Cambodian Water Festival in April.

"We celebrate them all, because I am from Cambodia, my husband, Kit, is from Hong Kong, but my children are New Zealanders. This is our home now."

And what a home it is. Speaking from a chef's kitchen in her opulent mansion, Danny says she and her husband grew up in large homes and feel comfortable in the 600-square metre space, with its expansive living areas, sweeping "grand Hollywood" staircase leading to an open plan sitting room and bar, seven large bedrooms, decadent bathrooms and a movie room to boot.

Upstairs and down, much of the home can be opened up, with eight sets of bifold doors leading to the balcony and verandah.

The Witherlea home, high enough in the Wither Hills to give wide and unimpeded views of the region, won the Registered Master Builders' House of the Year supreme home in Marlborough in 2007.

Danny says the home was designed to lure their children and any future grandchildren back. "Every room we designed for our children. Made it like a five-star hotel so they can come and stay here with their children one day."

They are unmistakably proud of what they have created and are now preparing to share their home and their cooking with others, having set up the Angel Luxury Lodge, their newest business in the province.

Danny came to New Zealand from Cambodia in 1980 and met Kit soon after, when her father and he were studying English together in Dunedin.

She dreamed of running her own business and when the couple moved to Blenheim she established Golden Wonton takeaways on Grove Rd, selling it to her sister two years later when she and Kit set up the Chung Wah Palace restaurant in 1986.

They both worked hard "seven days and seven nights a week" for two decades, only shutting its doors in 2008 after Danny suffered a back injury, and she and Kit stepped back from work to enjoy their home and the burgeoning garden on their1.2-hectare section.

Gardening was new to them both on arrival in New Zealand, with little opportunity to nurture their green thumbs in Phnom Penh or Hong Kong.

Kit has planted big pots of carnations and chrysanthemums, which are common in his home city. The plants, used for medicinal teas and cooking in China, are of huge importance to the culture.

Kit has also planted a vegetable garden, which provides Asian greens for the kitchen, including Chinese broccoli, coriander and bok choy, which they allow to seed for the next year's crop.

''I was very lucky to find a husband who likes gardening as well,'' says Danny, whose bad back means she is limited to giving instructions while Kit gets stuck in.

The front garden, just three years old, is bordered by buxus and agapanthus, with dahlias for colour, and other plants for their good luck, including Chinese green jade, which indicates prosperity when it flowers.
Ad Feedback

Two 18-year-old bonsai trees, traditionally kept very small in a pot but here relatively enormous outside, are trimmed by Danny every fortnight in summer.

They have big plans to develop the garden further, establish the lodge and teach others to cook the way they do, with Danny about to kick off a cooking class.

''I'm not going to open more restaurants. This is my second dream,'' she says'

Last updated 09:04 04/02/2011

Angel Lodge the home of Danny and Kit Young. Many of the seven bedrooms open on to the long wide balcony stretching along the front of the home.

New home for historic Chinese carving

A carved photo frame of a Chinese nativity scene, found beneath floorboards, has been given a new home more than six decades later.

Frank Tuckerman, 81, donated the carving to the Marlborough Museum last week after storing it carefully in his own home since he found it at age 14.

Mr Tuckerman said that during the 1940s his father became sick and regularly used to sit by the fireplace in their Lybster St home, and when he got up he often stood on a creaking floor board.

One Saturday evening, a young Mr Tuckerman overturned the floor board to reveal the painted totara-wood carving.

The carved photo frame was given to Mr Tuckerman's grandfather, Joe Kak, in the late 1870s, by Blenheim carver William Ah Gee to celebrate Mr Kak's Chinese heritage.

Mr Gee was a well-known carver in Marlborough and Wellington during the 1870s and 1880s, as well as one of the earliest Chinese settlers in New Zealand.

Mr Tuckerman's wife Isabel said the couple had "always planned" to give the carving to the museum at some stage.

"Frank thought it was worth keeping," she said.

Museum chief executive Steve Austin said he was "really delighted" to receive the carving and said it would be on display from March.

The carving combined both Christian and Chinese cultures, Mr Austin said.

Mr Austin, who is part-Chinese himself, has also been researching Mr Gee for his nearly-finished book, titled Early Chinese Settlers in New Zealand.

Artist Mr Gee carved many works for shops and churches in Blenheim in the late 1900s, including two white figurines that stood above the old Post Office, and the lectern at St Luke's at Spring Creek.

Mr Tuckerman said he wanted to give the carving to the museum to preserve it and give it a good home.

If anyone has any information about Mr Gee, please contact Mr Austin on 5781712.
Ad Feedback

- The Marlborough Express BY CLAIRE CONNELL
Last updated 13:32 22/02/2010

bro'Town to aid Christchurch

What do Shaolin monks, the Christchurch earthquake and characters from bro'Town have in common? Graphic novelist Ant Sang.

In a bid to raise money for the earthquake, Sang has donated an artwork featuring a character from his new graphic novel Shaolin Burning.

Called the 'Monk Who Doubts', the 42cm by 48cm piece is on TradeMe and so far bidding is around the $70 mark.

The piece was drawn while Sang was being filmed for a television segment due to air later this month.

He said the character "is like his name suggests, struggling with being a monk and when the temple burns down and he looses someone important to him, he goes on a 15-year rampage."

"It's about his search to get back on the path of a monk."

Sang was also the designer for the animated television show bro'Town so he's offered to put pen to paper and draw a one-off drawing of the auction winner amongst the characters.

The character's real life voices - Oscar Kightley, David Fane, Mario Gaoa and Shimpal Lelisi - will also sign the finished work.

Sang isn't from Christchurch but said he "just wanted to do something to help out down there seeing as I'm all the way up in Auckland and quite removed from it".

It's been a while since he has drawn the characters but, "I spent six years drawing bro'Town so I don't think I could forget".

All proceeds from both TradeMe auctions will go to the Red Cross 2011 Christchurch Art Appeal.

- Stuff Last updated 16:13 05/03/2011

Ruby Chan

Ruby seeks a place to wed

Her wedding venue is on the verge of collapse, but Ruby Chan is still positive she will get married in Christchurch on March 26.

The 14th floor of the Hotel Grand Chancellor was set to be the venue for Ruby Chan and James To's wedding, but the deadly earthquake has left it on a lean and uninhabitable.

The disaster is not getting in Ms Chan's way, however, with the former Nelson College for Girls student busily reorganising her big day.

However, she is yet to find a venue big enough to accommodate the 400 guests.

Mr To was born and educated in Christchurch. The couple fell in love there after being introduced by Miss Chan's uncle during her visit home from London three years ago.

Mr To is based in Palmerston North for work and Miss Chan is staying at her mother's Nelson home where she is reorganising the wedding, including accommodation for guests and finding somebody to do her hair and makeup.

She started planning the wedding last year and is expecting guests from Australia, Taiwan, Hong Kong, London and all over New Zealand.

However, some have pulled out as they are worried about the aftershocks and the state of the shattered city.

Miss Chan is a dancer, teacher and choreographer who has an MA in dance, has danced professionally and taught in many countries. She was born in Taiwan but moved to Nelson when she was 14.

The 31-year-old said she wants to carry on with plans to wed in Christchurch because of Mr To's link to the city he was brought up in. It will also make things easier for his elderly Christchurch relatives. "During difficult times we want to bring something joyful and happy.

"We are very lucky that our friends and family in Christchurch are OK."

The special occasion will feature various performers to entertain the guests. A piece of music about the South Island composed by Miss Chan's Nelson friend John Mathieson will be played.

The wedding will also have a recycled theme. Instead of expensive flowers there will be recycled decorations. The wedding dress, groom's suit and three bridesmaid dresses will be made from recycled materials including paper and cardboard.

Inspiration for the theme came from Miss Chan's artist friend Yun-Lin Lian, who makes art from recycled materials.

The low-cost approach will also mean they will save money which the couple are considering donating to an earthquake relief fund.

- The Nelson Mail

Last updated 12:30 05/03/2011

With a guest list of 400, Ruby Chan needs a big venue to replace the leaning Hotel Grand Chancellor in Christchurch.
BIG LISTING: With a guest list of 400, Ruby Chan needs a big venue to replace the leaning Hotel Grand Chancellor in Christchurch.

Mayme Chanwai

Chanwai Duo
Talented Raumati Artist and her Daughter
By Helen Tristram
February 16, 2011

Raumati resident Mayme Chanwai, a third generation Chinese New Zealander, began studying art relatively late in life, in her fifties.

She is a talented artist using a variety of mediums and last year some of her works were exhibited at the Mahara Gallery.

A few years ago Mayme suffered a severe stroke, “a disaster” in her words. But that opened up “different opportunities” and she now combines computer graphics with painting and other mediums to produce artforms.

At present she is working on a major artwork, “The Kiwifruit Odyssey”.

In the meantime a play by her daughter Linda Chanwai-Earle, `Heat` is at Circa, theatre 2 .

Linda is a poet and Playwright and last year was short-listed for the Bruce Mason Award.

The play `Heat` was a one year Circa Theatre commission which premiered at Circa in 2004, winning best actor for penguin.

She was first published as a poet with `Honeypants` which was listed for both Penn book awards and New Zealand Book awards.

And her one-act plays, Foh-Sahn and Ka-Shue are used as prescribed texts at Auckland University by Professors Witi Ihimaera and Peter Simpson.

Ka Shue was the first theatrical work to focus on the experiences of Chinese New Zealanders.

She has also been involved with theatrical projects created in Arohata and Christchurch Women`s prisons.

And has also been a TV Journalist for Asia Down Under for Channel1!

Hamish Tristram, visiting from London and a former Drama Reviewer was very happy to accompany Alan and myself to see `Heat`.

Here is his review……………..

Heat gives new meaning to the phrase “Menage a Trois”.

In this play the third party to an increasingly fractious relationship is a penguin.

And what a penguin!

After a halting start, the appearance of Bob-the-Penguin sparks conflict between man and wife mourning their dead child. The atmosphere, emotionally and physically is claustrophobic as the action takes place in an Antarctic cabin where the couple, two scientists, are documenting the effects of climate change.

The play`s tempo rises to a crescendo as the Antarctic winter sets in, the gales howl and the presence in the cabin of the ailing Bob recalls to mother Stella the need, suffering and loss of her child.

Implausible? Well yes. Original? Certainly. A play worth your committing 90 minutes? Up to a point.

Go because this is a work of a playwright with potential, who with some stringent editing and a demanding director is capable of creating dynamic theatre.

Street name doubles up - in English and Cantonese

By Edward Gay
1:15 PM Monday Aug 27, 2007
In what could be a first for New Zealand, a street on the Kapiti coast has a bi-lingual street sign in Cantonese and English.

Jean Hing Place on a new subdivision has been named after local Jean Young whose family arrived in Otaki about 100 years ago.

Mrs Young, whose Christian name is Hing, said it was a tribute to the Chinese community who have worked hard in the area since the turn of the 19th Century.

"We know my parents paid the poll tax but couldn't find the records," Mrs Young said.

The Hing's market garden is now the site of a new subdivision, said Kapiti Coast District Council historian Ron Proctor.

"It's a tribute to the Chinese who have been a part of Otaki over the years," Mr Proctor said.

Local history was rich with personalities, like Te Rauparaha, but the council was acknowledging that the history is multi-cultural.

He said the market gardeners came to the area after the railroad between Foxton and Wellington was opened.

"They supplied Wellington markets and, later on, the American forces and other armed forces during World War Two," Mr Proctor said.

Mr Proctor said there were also Italian market gardeners in the area and they may be researched in the future.
By Edward Gay

Bilingual sign a first for Otaki

A new street in the Kapiti Coast town of Otaki has both an English and a Chinese name to celebrate the town's multicultural and multilingual status, its mayor says.

Alan Milne said Jean Hing Place commemorated the contribution the Chinese community made to Otaki for more than 80 years and celebrated one of the district's oldest Chinese families.

On the Kapiti Coast considerable effort went into ensuring street names reflected the history and settlement of the area, he said.

Jean Young, nee Hing, unveiled the sign earlier this week.

- NZPA 4:47 PM Friday Aug 24, 2007