We had the good fortune of connecting with Tuânminh Albert Đỗ and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Tuânminh, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
Art and creativity are the two things that have been able to give me purpose and peace. They are the fundamental aspects of humanity. They teach us to listen, reflect, celebrate and aim for change. They are the embodiment of a very important human experience: hope. Hope for validation, the disturbance of injustice, for love, for complexity and simplicity. In doing so, it frees us from artificial boundaries set forth in the past by fear and ignorance, and in turn brings joy and healing. That is what I want to do in my life. Bring more hope.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am an international multi-disciplinary artist determined to creating conscious bodies of work challenging the status quo. My existence as a biracial artist and a son of an immigrant in a mono-racial and homogenous society has led to a lot of questions marks being attached to my name, appearance, life and more. One of the results of being raised in such an environment was my decision to move to another country to pursue the bigger truths of humanity. I am in a continuous process of unpacking, healing and celebrating myself, along with those who have been my true mentors. My artistry is a reflection of that. I find freedom in playing with form, shape-shifting, constantly picking up new skills to expand on how best I can share an expression, a story or an experience. I am a trained inquirer. My practice is focused on vision and meaning. Whatever I may perceive as getting me closer to that, be it singing, deep-diving, pottery, anything! I will investigate it.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Firstly, HUGE shoutout to my family: my parents Lidia & Long, siblings Fred, Leo & Nicole, grandparents, aunts, uncles, the entire CLAN! Their endless love and support got me where I am today, where I was, and where I will be. All that I am is thanks to their work and energy.
My mentor Orlando Pabotoy.
I would also like to give props to the book “The Little Prince,” by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.
Finally, my life partner Emily Goes, for being my guide, best friend, for inspiring and uplifting me every day in everything. You are my world, thank you.
Photos #2,3 and 5 are taken from a short film written and co-created by me “Lời Ru,” (Lullaby). The film deals with multi-generational understanding of Vietnamese Diaspora identity. Photo #4 is a still from a Op-Ed titled, “What That Means To Me,” created by Emily Goes and Rachel Lee, presented by my company Bai-Ka, shot by me. Photo #1 is an artist headshot taken by Jonathan Philip.