Japanese American National Museum
Events Calendar

Calendar of Events — January 2013

All programs are free for JANM members and included with admission for non-members, unless otherwise noted. Events are subject to change.

Reservations are recommended for most programs; you may use the links below. You may also RSVP by emailing or calling 213.625.0414 at least 48 hours in advance. Please indicate the name, date, and time of the program, as well as your name and the number of people in your party.

For all ticketed events (classes, workshops, food tours, etc.), pre-payment is required to hold your space. Cancellations must be made 48 hours in advance or no refund will be issued.

Saturday, January 5, 2013
1:00 PM—2:00 PM

Common Ground Exhibition Tour

events/commonground70.jpg Tour our ongoing exhibition Common Ground: The Heart of Community with experienced docents.

In conjunction with the exhibition Common Ground: The Heart of Community
Sunday, January 6, 2013
11:00 AM—5:00 PM

Oshogatsu Family Festival


Start the New Year and the Year of the Snake with fun arts and crafts, games, and exciting cultural activities and performances.

• Slither into the celebrating the Year of the Snake by making some of your own!
• Make a decorative wreath of all the zodiac animals
• Ruthie’s Origami Corner: Fold your own origami snake
• Toddler Room
• Jump around in our fun snake jumper!
• Special fukubukuro (lucky bag) sale at gift shop

11:30AM-1PM: Taste and purchase different varieties of rice. Sponsored by Common Grains.

12-3PM: Omikuji (sacred lottery) will let you know what kind of year you’ll be having!

12-5PM: Watch world-renowned candy artist Shaun Ichiyanagi make snake sculpture candy! (For children only. Candy snakes will be raffled off at the start of every hour.)

1-3PM: Reptacular Animals presents a Reptile Petting Zoo! Come meet real snakes and other cool reptiles!

1-3PM: Learn how to make onigiri rice balls in our Onigiri Contest. Sponsored by Common Grains.

1-4PM: Party Faces will paint your face like your favorite zodiac animal!

1-5PM: Start a lucky new year by making and eating zaru soba (buckwheat) noodles with Kidding Around the Kitchen.

2&3:30PM: Learn how to play Japanese taiko drums with Bombu Taiko!

2:30&4PM: Mochitsuki (traditional rice cake pound ceremony) performance and demonstration by Kodama Taiko.

3:30PM: Winners for the Onigiri Contest will be announced.

Onigiri Contest
Each contestant is given one cup of cooked rice to make onigiri. We will show you how to make onigiri and provide you with ingredients to decorate the onigiri. No other ingredients and tools other than what we provide you with can be used in the contest.

If you are participating in the contest as a family, only one adult and one child can participate in each section.

Time: 10 minutes is allowed for each contestant.

How to enter: Sign up and enter on the day of the festival.

The Jury will consist of Evan Kleiman, host of KCRW's Good Food, Betty Hallock, Los Angeles Times food writer, Naoko Moore, Japanese cooking instructor of Toiro Kitchen, Josh Lurie, Food GPS blogger, and Roxana Jullapat and Daniel Mattern of Cooks County.

Six winners!

Children's section: (must be 13 and under)
1 Kawaii onigiri prize
1 Artistic onigiri prize
1 Original onigiri prize

Adult Section:
1 Humorous onigiri prize
1 Original onigiri prize
1 Cool onigiri prize

About: Common Grains is a Japanese food and culture project to promote and celebrate Japanese grains, featuring rice and soba (buckwheat) produced by Shinmei, leading Japanese rice miller with local food writer/cooking teacher Sonoko Sakai.

Shaun Ichiyanagi
Candy Sculpting is an ancient Oriental folk art that originated in China and has been known in Japan for over 1000 years. A dying art, only a few performers exist in the world today.

Utilizing old Japanese scissors, this World Renown artist can magically transform a block of molten corn syrup into a beautiful sculpture of almost any shape and size, in 4-5 minutes.

For more information about, Mr. Ichiyanagi, visit:

Kidding Around The Kitchen
Kidding Around the Kitchen (KATK) brings a “hands on” cooking experience and lesson in which the kids actively participate in the preparation of recipes. The result of their cutting, measuring, cooking, and then eating their creations is more than simply a lesson in health. They get to see, touch, smell, and taste the fruits, vegetables, nuts, cheeses, eggs, meats, and other ingredients that they may never have previously seen in their raw form.

For more information on Kidding Around the Kitchen, visit:

Kodama Taiko
Kodama is a group of percussionists from the greater Los Angeles area who are dedicated to performing both traditional and contemporary pieces through the sounds of taiko. The group is primarily composed of working professionals who enjoy spending their "off" time learning and creating entertaining performance pieces.

Kodama is well known for their unique Mochitsuki (rice cake pounding) performance which combines the age-old tradition of hand-pounding mochi (sweet rice) with the sounds of taiko. This energetic custom is typically performed during the Japanese New Year's, but has lately been expanded to include any celebratory occasion. Makoto Fujii of the Japan based group Medetaya instructed Kodama in combining the art of taiko and Mochitsuki.

For more information, visit:

Party Faces
Party Faces brings an exciting, and colorful contribution to any event. For more information, visit: For more information, visit:

Reptacular Animals
Reptacular Animals was started by two friends, Lauren and Jennifer, whose lifelong passion for animals brought them together. Home to 230+ animals, Reptacular Animals travels across Southern California and provides animal shows and Animal Encounters classes. Together, Lauren and Jennifer have introduced tens of thousands of children to their wide variety of animals.

For more information, visit:

Saturday, January 12, 2013
10:00 AM—2:00 PM

Edible Adventures in Little Tokyo: Little Tokyo Rice Delights

events/lilt.bmp This tour will bring you to the local shops and restaurants of Little Tokyo for an opportunity to sample all things rice! The stops will highlight foods such as arare, onigiri, and rice milk. $40 members, $50 non-members, includes admission. Comfortable walking shoes recommended. RSVP early, 15 students max.
Thursday, January 17, 2013
6:00 PM

Giant Robot & JANM YPN Closing Party for Giant Robot Biennale 3


This event is free!

Celebrate another successful Biennale with Giant Robot, the JANM Young Professional Network, and many of the artists featured in Giant Robot Biennale 3 and experience the art (again) before the exhibition closes. For more information and reserve your space, please visit

In conjunction with the exhibition Giant Robot Biennale 3
Saturday, January 19, 2013
1:30 PM—3:00 PM

Giant Robot Artists’ Entourage Workshop with Rob Sato

events/GRB3-logo-150px_2.jpeg Join us for the final Giant Robot Artists' Entourage Workshop with Rob Sato! Attendees will learn watercolor texture techniques and how to use masking in this workshop. Materials provided. Free with admission.
In conjunction with the exhibition Giant Robot Biennale 3
Saturday, January 19, 2013
2:00 PM

Queer Compulsions: Race, Nation, and Sexuality in the Affairs of Yone Noguchi by Dr. Amy Sueyoshi

events/queer100.bmp Join Dr. Amy Sueyoshi for a reading and discussion of her book, Queer Compulsions: Race, Nation, and Sexuality in the Affairs of Yone Noguchi. A Q&A and book signing will follow the program.

Click here to read an interview with Dr. Sueyoshi about Queer Compulsions.

In September 1897 Yone Noguchi (1875–1947) contemplated crafting a poem to his new love, western writer Charles Warren Stoddard. Recently arrived in California, Noguchi was in awe of the established writer and the two had struck up a passionate correspondence. Still, he viewed their relationship as doomed—not by the scandal of their same-sex affections, but their introverted dispositions and differences in background. In a poem dedicated to his “dearest Charlie,” Noguchi wrote: “Thou and I, O Charles, sit alone like two shy stars, east and west!” While confessing his love to Stoddard, Noguchi had a child (future sculptor Isamu Noguchi) with his editor, Léonie Gilmour; became engaged to Washington Post reporter Ethel Armes; and upon his return to Japan married Matsu Takeda—all within a span of seven years. According to author Amy Sueyoshi, Noguchi was not a dedicated polyamorist: He deliberately deceived the three women, to whom he either pretended or promised marriage while already married. She argues further that Noguchi’s intimacies point to little-known realities of race and sexuality in turn-of-the-century America and illuminate how Asian immigrants negotiated America’s literary and arts community.

As Noguchi maneuvered through cultural and linguistic differences, his affairs additionally assert how Japanese in America could forge romantic fulfillment during a period historians describe as one of extreme sexual deprivation and discrimination for Asians, particularly in California. Moreover, Noguchi’s relationships reveal how individuals who engaged in seemingly defiant behavior could exist peaceably within prevailing moral mandates. His unexpected intimacies in fact relied upon existing social hierarchies of race, sexuality, gender, and nation that dictated appropriate and inappropriate behavior. In fact, Noguchi, Stoddard, Gilmour, and Armes at various points contributed to the ideological forces that compelled their intimate lives. Through the romantic life of Yone Noguchi, Queer Compulsions narrates how even the queerest of intimacies can more provocatively serve as a reflection of rather than a revolt from existing social inequality. In unveiling Noguchi’s interracial and same-sex affairs, it attests to the complex interaction between lived sexualities and socio-legal mores as it traces how one man negotiated affection across cultural, linguistic, and moral divides to find fulfillment in unconventional yet acceptable ways.
Saturday, January 19, 2013
3:00 PM—4:00 PM

Giant Robot Biennale 3: Project Remix Panel


This panel will discuss Project Remix. Curated by Eric Nakamura, Project Remix is a custom vinyl show that features figures designed by Uglydoll creator David Horvath and customized by over 80 artists from seven countries—including the rare combination of both established customizers and fine artists. Artists Luke Cheuh, David Horvath, Scott Tolleson, and Yoskay Yamamoto will be participating in the panel.

In conjunction with the exhibition Giant Robot Biennale 3
Sunday, January 20, 2013

Exhibition Closing

Giant Robot Biennale 3 closes.
Saturday, January 26, 2013
10:15 AM—12:15 PM

Little Tokyo Walking Tour

events/2007-07-28_walkingtour___18_1_7.jpg Relive history and learn about present-day Little Tokyo with Museum docents. $9 Members; $14 non-members, includes admission. Comfortable walking shoes recommended. Weather permitting.
Saturday, January 26, 2013
1:00 PM—3:00 PM

Sogetsu Ikebana Workshop: Basic Slanting Style Moribana

events/Ikebana100_1_2.jpg Ikebana (“living flower”) is the Japanese art of flower arrangement. Sogetsu Ikebana is a three dimensional artistic expression composed of flower and plant material arranged in a container. This workshop will introduce students to the basic technique and style that is the foundation of many Ikebana arrangements. Instructor Mikiko Ideno will teach you "Basic Slanting Style Moribana." $30 members; $35 non-members, includes admission, flowers, & supply rental. RSVP early, 10 students max.



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