Japanese American National Museum
Events Calendar

Art, Culture & Identity Past Events


Saturday, July 11, 2015
2:00 PM

Sugar/Islands Panel Discussion and Reception


Sugar/Islands: Finding Okinawa in Hawai‘i—The Art of Laura Kina and Emily Hanako Momohara curator Krystal Hauseur, PhD, and artists Laura Kina and Emily Hanako Momohara discuss the ideas, histories, and inspirations behind their exhibition. Light reception to follow.

This program is free, but RSVPs are strongly encouraged using the link below.

Saturday, June 6, 2015
2:00 PM

Seven Gifts from L.A. Kitchens to the World


The first European settlers in the Los Angeles area ignored the native food culture, but every wave of immigrants after that fused their cooking with the cultures that were already here. People from France, Italy, China, Mexico, Japan, Thailand, Korea, and other nations initially tried to recreate their home dishes here, but in time developed unique fusions that have become part of our shared national heritage.

Culinary historian Richard Foss will chart the waves of immigration to our city and explain the inspirations, accidents, and whimsical substitutions behind their greatest culinary successes. This fast-moving and humorous program is suitable for adults and children.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015
7:30 PM—9:00 PM

InSight: LAB Writers Group Presents: Why No Mouth?


This group of Asian American theater writers led by traci kato-kiriyama presents Why No Mouth?, a reading and discussion of Hello Kitty–inspired writings produced in their monthly workshop. The works are geared toward theater and look at themes of consumerism, relationships, and need.

Members of the group, who experiment with writing in live time and through an Asian-American lens, have included Greg Watanabe, Jason Fong, Judy Soohoo, Ken Narasaki, Prince Gomolvilas, Snehal Desai, Vasanti Saxena, and West Liang.

In conjunction with the exhibition Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty
Thursday, May 14, 2015
7:00 PM

Mountain Brothers



Join us for an intimate conversation with cultural pioneers the Mountain Brothers, the first Asian American hip hop act to sign with a major label. Based out of Philadelphia, Chops (Scott Jung), Peril-L (Christopher Wang), and Styles Infinite (Steve Wei) broke new ground for Asian American musicians. Learn about their struggles and their triumphs, and where they are today. Moderated by Dr. Oliver Wang, associate professor of sociology at California State University, Long Beach.

This program is free, but RSVPs are strongly encouraged using the link below.

This program is supported in part by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors through the Los Angeles County Arts Commission.

Learn how they broke new ground for Asian Americans in hip hop on the JANM blog.

Saturday, April 18, 2015
2:00 PM

Hello Kitty and Kawaii Culture


Join Hello! curators Jamie Rivadeneira and Christine Yano for a lively discussion of Hello Kitty and her place in Japan’s kawaii (cute) culture.

Free for members; free with Hello! admission; $5 general.

If you are purchasing tickets for Hello! and would like to attend this program, please RSVP to or call 213.625.0414.

In conjunction with the exhibition Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty
Saturday, February 28, 2015
2:00 PM

Hello! Exhibiting Artists Panel Discussion


Artists Paul Frank, Simone Legno, and Brandi Milne, whose work is featured in the contemporary art portion of Hello! The Supercute World of Hello Kitty, will participate in a discussion about their work and how Hello Kitty served as inspiration.

The artists will sign copies of the Hello! exhibition catalog after the discussion.

$12 members; $15 non-members. Does not include admission.


Paul Frank
Paul Frank is an internationally known artist whose bold, satirical designs for clothing and accessories have appeared in magazines, television shows, commercials, music videos, and motion pictures. Frank also creates fine art, which he describes as his character designs brought to life in soft sculptural form through sewing, carving, woodworking, and screen printing.

Simone Legno
Simone Legno is the creative director and co-founder of tokidoki, an innovative line of apparel, handbags, cosmetics, and accessories. Tokidoki, which means “sometimes” in Japanese, has a worldwide following and has collaborated with numerous brands including LeSportsac, Marvel, Levi’s, Smashbox cosmetics, and Xbox. Legno describes his brand’s philosophy as “the hope that something magical will happen to us.”

Brandi Milne
Brandi Milne’s rustic, melancholy scenarios recall classic European Gothic paintings while simultaneously expressing deeply personal narratives of growth and struggle.

In conjunction with the exhibition Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty



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