“Ascent”: new artwork for Made in Chinatown fuelled by the Chinatown Recovery Project


Odella Yue, one of our artists-in-residence , has created a beautiful new artwork in response to working with London Chinatown restaurant workers, with a focus on racism, hate crime and Chinatown’s post-pandemic recovery. Titled “Ascent”, the piece communicates ideas of “recover, rise and thrive” through the use of symbolism and colour. Odella’s residency focused on our Chinatown Recovery Project, addressing the needs of our neighbourhood.

The main elements in the design are based on common ingredients found in restaurant kitchens (lotus seeds, chilies, spring onions and pomegranates), while the colour palettes are inspired by a tie-dye workshop held with restaurant workers using dyes made from kitchen ingredients.

Describing the work, Odella said:

“The lotus symbolises how brilliant things can grow and thrive even when the roots are in the mud. I want to communicate the idea that the communities in Chinatown have the power and strength to respond to racism and thrive.”

This design will used in our Made in Chinatown project, bringing together artists, community members and volunteers to create unique and beautiful products that explore Chinatown’s heritage. Proceeds from Made in Chinatown sales support community projects in the area. Small batch produced products using Odella’s design will launch in autumn 2021.