PLACE is a community based art organization, fiscally sponsored by AAWAA- Asian American Women Artists Association. We serve all women, but grew out of a need to address the struggles of Asian Pacific American women.
We work to
    *alleviate suffering 
    *elevate well-being & confidence
    *advocate for women through art exhibitions.
2018 PLACE at J-SEI, photo Cris Matos
l to r: Reiko Fujii, Maggie Yee, Irene Wibawa, Cynthia Tom, Susan Almazol, Manon Bogerd Wada
missing, but valued: Natalie Sacramento
Cynthia Tom , Executive Director, Curator, Workshop Leader  CAC, CPBC
27+ year visual artist and curator for 15+ years, she combines her spiritual belief in art for healing and deep  transformation with an understanding of the long-term implications of unaddressed trauma in individuals, families, and communities. She comes from a Chinese American family history of human trafficking and is a domestic violence survivor.
By unraveling family patterns and working with our Hungry Ghosts using the creatve techniques that are part of PLACE, she has largely worked through her ancestral patterns.
A product of an S.F. multicultural upbringing, she credits her artistic attention to ethnic roots to her teachers, African American artist, JoeSam and Puerto Rican artist, Cris Matos. Her feminist art is inspired by Remedios Varo, and Lenor Fini. Cynthia discovered her Asian and feminist identity while working with Asian American Women Artists Association as Board President/Curator/Director.
Certified: Pattern Breakthrough Coach - Creative Energy Options, Assertiveness Coach - Louise Hay/Doreen Virtue
Cynthia Tom
Founder/ Executive Director
Maggie is a painter, assemblage/collage and theatrical scenic artist, a graphic designer for 17 years and published a limited edition, “Folio 94, Conversation for Those Who Create” in Honolulu, a portable gallery style of hand bound images, 3-D design, and poems from 1992-1998.
She was born in Honolulu in 1955 and lives in a surf shack in Santa Cruz, California.
Co-Art Director/ Co-Curator/Co-Workshop Leader

Natalie Sacramento
Natalie joined the PLACE family as a participant in A Place of Her Own Fall 2014 cohort. She works in occupational health and HIV prevention. She has aspirations to improve the health outcomes of her community, people of color, and immigrants. Natalie is excited to continue her exploration of public health through the lens of community healing and art.  
Workshop Facilitator, Events Coordinator
Irene has been participating in PLACE since 2010. Irene began her art journey with found objects and dioramas in childhood while playing with Snoopies and Legos.  She enjoys discovering uncommon uses of common items to craft scenarios based on memories, as well  her imagination. She also enjoys spreadsheets, bookeeping and QuickBooks.
Administrative Assistant, Bookkeeping, Art Instructor


Cris Matos
Art Instructor, MFA Studio Arts - John F. Kennedy University, BA Psychology, University of CA, Berkeley.  A found object, mixed media installation artist, she has been creating, exhibiting and teaching art since 1989.
Art Instructor, Installation Lead, Documentation, has been a found object artist for 45 years, a carpenter, photographer, painter, singer, songwriter, sonero and biingual in Spanish.
Art Instructor, MFA Studio Arts, Rhode Island School of Design, BFA Community Arts from California College of the Arts. Landscape and humanity are significant threads in her art practice. Within found objects, Manon discovers hidden stories and is intrigued to divulge the unseen and overlooked. 
Sigi Arnejo C.C.
Advisor. Amy Lam is a Community Mental Health Consultant, a poet-musician, mother, community advocate and intuitive energy healer. Her life's work is dedicated to personal and collective healing. She believes in the power of art to express and heal what words alone cannot.  
Advisor. Sigi Arnejo is a life coach specializing in grief and loss coaching. She is part of the Kaiser Permanente Hospice team and facilitates drop in grief groups regularly. She leads the Daughters Who've Lost Mothers group, combining grief processing with storytelling.
Advisor. Susan Almazol is an Oakland-based artist and Silicon Valley-centered businesswoman. Her work is influenced by the cultures she was born into (Philippines), where she began school (Japan), and where she grew up (North America).  She creates sculpture, writes creative non-fiction pieces, and dances from her reflections as a child of war, an immigrant outsider, lover of textiles, and celebrant of movement. Her sculpture graces the cover of the art and literary anthology, Cheers to Muses.  
  1. Community work in progress by Nancy Arvold. Photo artist
  2. 2010-A by Irene Wibawa. photo Cris Matos
  3. Cynthia Tom, recipient of SOMArts Curator Award & Maggie Yee, SOMArts , 2015. Photo Cris Matos