Japanese American National Museum
Past Exhibitions

Past Exhibitions

Miss Kagawa, collection of the North Carolina State Museum of Natural Sciences and Helen, collection of the Takasago Yochien

Passports to Friendship: Celebrating 75 Years of U.S.-Japan Friendship Doll Exchange
July 27 - October 13, 2002

In 1927, millions of American and Japanese children participated in an exchange program aimed at promoting peace, goodwill and understanding between their two nations. American children sent 12,739 dolls to coincide with the traditional Japanese Girl's Day festival known as Hina Matsuri. Later that year, Japanese children reciprocated by sending 58 dolls to the U.S. in time for Christmas celebrations.

Each doll carried with it a passport and the good wishes of the children. This exhibition traced the historical and political context of the 1927 doll exchange, relates what happened to the dolls in the intervening years and revives the original mission to educate children how to respect and value diverse cultures and experiences.

C.O.L.A. 2002
May 3 - June 30, 2002

Hideo Date Cathleen, ca. 1930s. Oil on canvas, 10 x 8 inches (99.111.150)

Living in Color: The Art of Hideo Date
October 27, 2001 - April 7, 2002

This exhibition of paintings is the first retrospective survey of the art of Issei painter Hideo Date (b. 1907).

Flo Oy Wong, made in usa: Angel Island Shhh, 2000.

Flo Oy Wong: Angel Island, Immigration, and Family Stories
September 27, 2001 - March 31, 2002

Artist Flo Oy Wong is known for her provocative explorations of family and community history through her work. The exhibition includes Wong’s most recent installation, made in usa: Angel Island Shhh, that exposes the conditions and experiences of Chinese immigrants incarcerated at Angel Island Immigration Station between 1910 and 1940.

Mei-Ling Hom Silkworm Grind, 2000.

Beliz Brother, Mei-ling Hom, and Kim Yasuda: Celebrating U.S. - Japan Creative Artists Exchange Fellowship Program
May 11 - September 2, 2001

This exhibition features new work by three recent recipients of the prestigious artists exchange fellowship program jointly administered by the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission (JUSFC) and the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).

Henry Sugimoto Self Portrait in Camp, 1943.

Henry Sugimoto: Painting an American Experience
March 24 - October 7, 2001

At the age of 19, Henry Sugimoto left Japan to make his life in America. Determined to become an artist, he studied in the San Francisco Bay Area and exhibited nationally and internationally.When he was unjustly incarcerated at 42 in the Jerome and Rohwer concentration camps in Arkansas, the experience irreversibly affected how he viewed himself, his art, and the Japanese American experience. The only thing that remained constant was his desire to paint.

For a Greener Tomorrow: Japanese American Gardeners in Southern California
October 28, 2000 - May 1, 2001

Barred from leasing farmland in the early 1900s, many Japanese immigrants traveled from California’s countryside to the cities and turned to another kind of farming—gardening.

Allen Say's Journey: The Art and Words of a Children's Book Author
July 28, 2000 - February 11, 2001

Allen Say’s Journey: The Art and Words of a Children’s Book Author is the first retrospective exhibition of the art of Allen Say, award-winning children’s book author and illustrator. His drawings, watercolor paintings, and prose explore themes of longing, belonging, and the meaning of “home.” Through the internal conflicts of his characters and their search for identity and self-discovery, one can glimpse into Say’s own life journey.

Zebra baseball team at Heart Mountain, Wyoming concentration camp, 1944.

More Than a Game: Sport in the Japanese American Community
March 4, 2000 - February 18, 2001

More Than a Game: Sport in the Japanese American Community tells the story of one immigrant group through the universally popular topic of sport.

From initial immigration in the late 1800s through incarceration during World War II and the triumph of the 1952 Olympics where four Japanese Americans won a total of seven medals, the exhibition reveals a unique and, often untold, perspective on how sport influenced and impacted the evolution of the Japanese American community.

An American Diary: Paintings by Roger Shimomura
October 8, 1999 - January 16, 2000

Issei (first generation Japanese American) “picture bride” Toku Shimomura began a diary in 1912, the year of her immigration to the United States, and continued writing until her death in 1963.



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