kaya publishes books of the asian pacific diaspora


We are thrilled to announce that as part of our 30th anniversary celebrations, Alan Nakagawa will be the first-ever Kaya Press Artist-in-Residence. In our 30th year, we are thinking about new, future-oriented, multidisciplinary perspectives on the role of literature, publishing, and its archiving. During his residency, Nakagawa will conduct oral history sessions with Kaya Press staff to develop Micro Operas—brief, interdisciplinary pieces created in collaboration with Asian diasporic musicians, archivists, and artists. Every book we’ve published since 1994 will become its own Micro Opera— highlighting the Kaya Press oeuvre as a living archive of creative collaboration.

Alan Nakagawa is an interdisciplinary artist with archiving tendencies, primarily working with sound, often incorporating various media and working with communities and their Histories.

Nakagawa has been working on a series of semi-autobiographic sound- architecture/tactile sound experiences, utilizing multi-point audio field recordings of historic interiors; Peace Resonance; Hiroshima/Wendover combines recordings of the interiors of the Hiroshima Atomic Dome (Hiroshima, Japan) and Wendover Hangar (Utah); Conical Sound; Antoni Gaudi and Simon Rodia combines recordings of the interiors of Watts Towers (Los Angeles) and the Sagrada Familia (Barcelona, Spain). Premiered in 2023, Point of Turn, is his first vibratory sound work involving the human voice; utilizing collected stories about moments or events that resulted in someone leaving their organized religion. For this work, the combining of these stories and the analog data stretching of a verse and chorus of the 1970’s seminal pop band, 10CC’s hit song, “I’m Not in Love”.

Nakagawa is also currently the artist-in-resident at the Gerth Archives, California State University Dominguez Hills assigned to the newly acquired L.A. Free Press/Art Kunkin Collection.

His first book, A.I.R.Head: Anatomy of an Artist in Residence was published in January 2023 by Writ-Large Press. It maps his artistic trajectory that led to his nine artist-in-residencies in six years.

He was the first artist-in-residence for the Los Angeles Department of Transportation and the Los Angeles County Library. Nakagawa was invited by the Smithsonian Museum of American History to research the development of the hearing aid in the US. He currently resides in Los Angeles’ Koreatown and continues to exhibit and develop his creative practice.

Nakagawa is a recipient of two Art Matters grants, City of Los Angeles Artist Fellowship, California Community Foundation Mid-Career Artist Fellowship and a Monbusho Scholar. He co-founded arts collective non-profit Collage Ensemble Inc. (1984-2011), curated experimental music weekly Ear Meal Webcast (2010-2017), produced public
practice artist interviews podcast VISITINGS Radio Show (2017-2020) and administers the website Asian American Futurism (2022-Present).

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