Join us in celebrating community and connection, the relationships that shape all of us into who we are. Swim in the rivers of your childhood memories. Ponder companionship and collectivism and interconnected threads, a head resting against a shoulder. “FRIEND 朋” is a tapestry documenting the seasons of friendship: the initial spark and the ending fizzle and the tender moments that fall in the middle.

    In this issue:
  • Communal cooking shot on film from “intimacies” adorns the cover, with more photos by huiyin zhou, Amy Yoon and Gi Chun inside the issue.
  • Angelina Han threads together her social web as mixed media sculpture in “Friendship Cloak."
  • Staff Contributor C. Grace Chang speaks to Swedish artist and filmmaker April Lin 林森 about collective care and queer diasporic community in Lin 林’s work.
  • Editor-in-Chief Jiaqi Kang converses with London-based Taiwanese American artist Sabrina Chou, discussing kinship and relationality, bodily memory and history through food, and humor in art-making.
  • Senior Editor Yue Chen interviews Hong Kong-Chinese poet Mary Jean Chan, talking through Chan’s collection Flèche, linguistics and legibility, and love.
  • For our Student Spotlight, Junior Editor Stella Li talks to visual artist Taylor Yingshi about her artistic practice and finding community through art.
  • Short fiction by Tina S. Zhu and Ge Fang trouble the boundaries between friendship and romance, between self and other, whilst Emily Chen explores queer friendships and what it means to exist in a body.
  • Collaborative work abounds: sensation and odor permeates fiction by Celia Zhang Tianyi, translated by Kelly Zhang; a letter from Julio Hu Chen combined with photography from Yun Ping explore queer diasporic friendship; UltraKatty, two Hong Kong-born best friends and creators, provide a glimpse into a transformative, 8-year-long friendship and love story.
  • A pencil drawing from Yang Gao and comics from Ines Alto explore what it is to be alone with one’s thoughts; Magdalene Ma’s comic “Butterfly” details companionship holding strong against new frontiers.
  • Cindy Ziyun Huang and Thảo Tô navigate familial entanglements through their introspective, visually stunning writing.
  • Para Vadhahong and Mackenzie Duan memorialize friendships in their gentle poems.

Front cover by huiyin zhou, Amy Yoon, and Gi Chun.