Empowering New York’s Asian American Community Since 1989

Shayn Prapaisilp'S
St. Louis

“My first impression of Shayn’s story was layers. I designed the tunnel idea around different stages of his life in the city. His experience and memories led me on the colorful road toward the heart of St. Louis. The golden sun in the center is representative of me going through his journey: warm and powerful.”

—Lisk Feng, Illustrator

Get Shayn's poster as a gift with a donation to Hope Against Hate. Digital downloads start at $25 and printed posters start at $150. All contributions, regardless of amount, fund critical programs that keep Asian Americans safe in New York City and beyond.

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About Shayn Prapaisilp

Shayn Prapaisilp is a Thai and Chinese American who feels a strong connection to his upbringing in the Midwest and home city of St. Louis. He and his family run several businesses specializing in Asian foods and goods, including the restaurant King & I Thai Cuisine. They take pride in spreading AAPI culture around the city of St. Louis.

WHERE AM I REALLY FROM?

“No one was ever happy with the answer I gave them. I wasn’t allowed to dictate my own identity. We’d just go back and forth until they got the answer they wanted. I know that line of questioning wouldn't happen to other people.”

—Shayn Prapaisilp

Tower Grove

“We live in a historic neighborhood. The architecture there is these old, brownstone-y brick homes—our house is from 1904. And we live really close to a beautiful park. My dad’s first business was actually on the same street I live on now. It’s cool being able to say that this street—and this part of St. Louis—is forever in our family’s DNA.”

A Diverse Neighborhood

“On any given day, you’ll see a Somali family in their traditional wear. You’ll see Burmese families walking to the International Institute to take classes. There are young professionals like myself and my girlfriend, a lot of younger folks moving in. You have families who’ve been here for two, three generations, adjacent to a street with a Vietnamese restaurant, an Ethiopian restaurant, all of it.”

America’s Pastime

“A town like ours, we really take pride in our sports teams. Summer means day games, the crack of the bat, cold beer. Those are the kinds of simple things people associate with us, both from the external view and the internal view.”

King & I Thai Cuisine

“My family opened the first Thai restaurant in St. Louis in 1980. No one had ever really had Thai food in St. Louis before, so we couldn’t mess it up. It couldn’t be bad. We were representing an entire culture to the city. We’ve been in business almost 30 years, and we’re still one of the first experiences of international flavors for a lot of people. It’s something I’m really proud of. I’m a big believer in food bringing walls down.”

Thai Buddhist Temple

“My parents go to a Thai Buddhist temple, and I was lucky enough to have some exposure to the temple. I got to learn some of the holidays—which really center around food. There’s some Buddhism stuff, but really, people are there for the food.”

Traditional Foods

“Some of our traditional foods are toasted ravioli and gooey butter cake. We have a really big barbecue history, as well. One of our omakase restaurants just won Best New Restaurant. We have a great Bosnian restaurant. We’re finally able to celebrate the whole breadth of St. Louis and all that we have to offer—and that’s not only typically white American culture.”

MEET THE ARTIST

Lisk Feng

Lisk Feng is a New York–based Chinese illustrator whose work is full of life, color and energy. Her art, with its rich color palette and highly detailed scenes, has the unique ability to transport people to distant places—from St. Louis to Shanghai to Paris.

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Combat AAPI hate with a donation to Hope Against Hate today, and get a limited-edition travel poster. Digital downloads start at $25 and printed posters start at $150. All contributions, regardless of amount, fund critical programs that keep Asian Americans safe in New York City and beyond.
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