The Yellow Pages (1993) was Ho Tam’s first artist’s book. It explored North American stereotypes and clichés of Chinese and Asian cultures. The work was also adapted into an eight-minute video piece that premiered at Union Station in Toronto in 1994. In 1998, Ottawa’s Gallery 101 helped the artist to print the book’s second run. Arranged in 26 segments from “A” to “Z”, The Yellow Pages looks at the relationship between images and text within the Asian-American/-Canadian context and beyond.
Updated in 2016 to reflect the changing nature of our times, the most recent edition of the project once again pairs text with seemingly random yet poignant pieces of footage, taken from various sources. In a playful and satirical manner, the work roams through the past and present, from the Vietnam War, to pop culture, to explorations of queer history and changing beauty standards. Both simple and complex in its presentation, The Yellow Pages seeks to interact with distinct viewers, never allowing a single perspective to dominate.