DVAN photo

Our film festival is organized biennially by the core members of the Diasporic Vietnamese Artists Network (DVAN), and staffed by DVAN members and volunteers who have joined us for this particular event.



Festival Director — Julie Thi Underhill

Festival Supervisor — Isabelle Thuy Pelaud

Publicists — Julie Thi Underhill, Isabelle Thuy Pelaud, Susie Willemsz-Geeroms

Media Liaison — Susie Willemsz-Geeroms

Publicity Interns — Joshua Higgins, Jenn Phan, Franz Vincent Lacanlale, Mendy Chang

Publicity Advisers — Duy Nguyen, Jerry Dear, Sonny Le

Graphic Design — Julie Thi Underhill, Viet Le

Website — Julie Thi Underhill

Curators — Julie Thi Underhill, Isabelle Thuy Pelaud

Programming Advisers — Lan Duong, Viet Nguyen, Ysa Le (ViFF)

Programming Committee — Julie Thi Underhill, Isabelle Thuy Pelaud, Ali Kashani, Hien Dinh, Joshua Higgins, Estela Uribe

Opening Night Event Coordinator — Joshua Higgins

Opening Night Assistance — Franz Vincent Lacanlale

Opening Night Photographers — Coy Tran, Katy Ma

Artists’ Television Access Liaison — Ali Kashani

Volunteer coordinator at SFSU & the Roxie — Estela Uribe

Ushers — to be announced

Will-Call — Estela Uribe

Video documentation — Jenn Phan, Franz Vincent Lacanlale

Translation — Thang Dao, Hien Dinh

Online ticket sales — Julie Thi Underhill

Shipping & Receiving — Julie Thi Underhill, Joshua Higgins, Thang Dao



Our first film festival in 2011, then called San Francisco Diasporic Vietnamese Film Festival, was sponsored by the Diasporic Vietnamese Artists Network (DVAN) and the Asian American Studies Department at San Francisco State University. It was co-sponsored by the SF Asian American Film Festival (CAAM), Zellerbach Family Foundation, APICC, VASC, and Vietnamese International Film Festival (VIFF). It was directed by Julie Thi Underhill, co-directed by Isabelle Thuy Pelaud, and curated by Lan Duong and Viet Nguyen.

The Diasporic Vietnamese Artists Network (DVAN) is a San Francisco-based organization established to promote artists from the Vietnamese diaspora whose work in literature, visual art, film, and performance art enriches Vietnamese American local communities and strengthens ties amongst Vietnamese across the globe. Unlike many other Vietnamese art organizations, DVAN is international in scope, which enables the Vietnamese American community in the Bay Area to know Vietnamese artists from different parts of the world. We accomplish this mission through the sponsorship of exhibits, symposiums, publications, festivals, readings, and other cultural/art events. DVAN was formally established in the winter of 2007 and received fiscal sponsorship from Intersection for the Arts (through its Incubator program) in February 2008.  By collaborating with Intersection, DVAN benefits from a fiscal sponsor’s experience in assisting art organizations similar to ours. Intersection’s sponsorship aids us in achieving our mission and organizing and overseeing our finances so that both our organizational and project budgets are auditable as a tax-exempt, non-for-profit organization.

In addition, DVAN’s core members have over 15 years of collective experience organizing and promoting cultural and community events. Our Advisory Board and Advisory Committee members—consisting of academics, artists, non-profit managers, and organizers—have coordinated projects in Southeast and East Asia, Europe, the United States, and Canada. Successful working relationships were established long ago amongst many of the board/core members, as well as through their participation in Ink & Blood, a grassroots organization founded in 1994 (by several current DVAN board/core members) to promote Vietnamese literary works. Most of DVAN’s members have participated as board members or advisors of other arts/cultural organizations, including Association for Viet Arts, Vietnamese American Studies Center at SFSU, and Vietnamese American Arts & Letters Association.

In five years, DVAN has organized the first Vietnamese film festival in San Francisco, two other heavily-attended poetry and literature festivals, periodic author readings, a youth group to promote the arts. Most recently, DVAN members curated an art exhibit at UC Riverside celebrating the artists in a new book called Southeast Asian Women in the Diaspora: Troubling the Borders of Literature and Art. Edited and financed by DVAN, this book is forthcoming from the University of Washington Press. Through its blog diaCRITICS (, DVAN features cutting-edge commentary covering the arts, culture, and politics of Vietnamese in the U.S., in Viet Nam, and in the diaspora. Our diaCRITICS blog began in 2010, and we’ve received around 150,000 hits since then, often over 200 hits a day.

This year, our film festival has fiscal sponsorship from Intersection for the Arts and co-sponsorship from the Vietnamese International Film Festival (VIFF) and Zellerbach Family Foundation. Yet we are seeking and accepting additional funding from other foundations and organizations. We are grateful for the support and encouragement of diverse individuals and communities in and beyond the Bay Area of California. We love you to contact us if you’d like to contribute to our film festival this year.



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