The Keller Center is pleased to announce our co-sponsorship of the Ida B. Wells Just Data Lab's Artist-in-Residence, Chanika Svetvilas. Her current project, Anonymous Was the Data, addresses the mental health and healthcare needs of Asian American Pacific Islanders (AAPI).
Svetvilas' work focuses on the impact and trauma of xenophobic discrimination and violence against the AAPI community. Through her research Svetvilas discovered that the AAPI population has higher than average suicide rates paired with limited access to healthcare. She decided to use her artistic talents to bring a spotlight to these injustices.
Over the last few months Svetvilas has designed a survey that explores mental health differences and healthcare access. She is surveying volunteers in the AAPI community and is providing survey participants with resources and support, while closely safeguarding their data.
Once collected, Svetvilas will 'map' the data into an interactive art exhibition that allows viewers to see mental health information in a new way. "I will use 3D printing technology to create a physical representation of the data collected so that the audience can interact with the data in a collaborative way," said Svetvilas.
Svetvilas will build her installation in Keller's makerspace utilizing our 3D printing technology and other design materials. The exhibit will open at the Lewis Center next fall. "My hope is that this project becomes a tool kit that other communities can use to address social injustice," said Svetvilas.
A quote by Ida B. Wells on the Labs' website reads The way to right wrongs is to turn the light of truth upon them; Svetvilas' installation may just be the light of truth the AAPI community needs.
The Ida A Wells Just Data lab is part of the Department of African American Studies. The project is also supported by the following: Asian American Studies, Center for Health & Wellbeing, Council for Science and Technology, Effron Center for the Study of America, Lewis Center for the Arts, Office of Disability Services, and Princeton Humanities Council.