Japanese American National Museum
Press Releases

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - November 4, 2014

Leslie Unger - - 213-830-5690


Los Angeles

The community day of painting for the Japanese American National Museum’s recently commissioned mural, Moon Beholders, has been rescheduled for Saturday, November 8, 2014, to coincide with the museum’s next Target Free Family Saturday. The mural will be painted on the north wall of JANM’s National Center for the Preservation of Democracy. Mural painting will take place 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Target Free Family Saturday runs 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

All ages are welcome for the mural painting. On the day of the event, individuals may sign up to paint for 30-minute intervals; up to 12 individual can paint per interval. Those wishing to participate should wear closed-toe shoes and other attire appropriate for an exterior painting project. Work will be done on the lower section of the wall, accessible without lifts or ladders. Katie Yamasaki, who designed the mural for JANM, will be present to explain the content and symbolism of the mural and to offer a simple lesson in the use of highlights and shadows.

In addition to the painting opportunity, JANM will be offering a variety of free activities as part of its November Target Free Family Saturday. In honor of Veterans Day and Thanksgiving, many of these activities are themed around giving thanks to family, friends, military veterans, and those currently serving in the US armed forces. Throughout the day, visitors will be able to write letters of thanks to military personnel, for delivery by Operation Gratitude; make origami peace doves; and design hanging autumn leaf decorations. There will also be coloring activities and a scavenger hunt, courtesy of Go For Broke National Education Center, and children will be able to sample mini pies from Claremont’s I Like Pie Bakeshop.

Documentaries about the late Senator Daniel Inouye and former linebacker for the Super Bowl-winning New Orleans Saints Scott Fujita will be screened at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., respectively; caricaturist Dominic Arneson will be drawing visitor portraits from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m.; and Swing Dames, a WWII USO-style singing group, will perform at 1 p.m. Hello Kitty will be present to share hugs from 3 to 4 p.m.

Target Free Family Saturday includes admission to JANM’s ongoing core exhibition, Common Ground: The Heart of Community, which chronicles 130 years of Japanese American history. Admission to Hello! The Supercute World of Hello Kitty is not included; those wishing to see Hello! must purchase tickets and advance purchase is strongly recommended.

The Moon Beholders mural is designed by muralist, author, and illustrator Katie Yamasaki. Yamasaki is based in Brooklyn, NY, and has painted more than 60 murals around the world. She has also had three books published, including Fish for Jimmy, which she both wrote and illustrated.

The mural is intended to represent, celebrate, challenge, and preserve diverse concepts within Japanese American culture, both contemporary and historic, while connecting with the diverse community around the Japanese American National Museum. It features a young girl clothed in a variety of furoshiki—traditional Japanese cloths long used to preserve, protect, and transport items, including those being given as gifts. Also featured are lanterns, representing the idea of akari, meaning light or illumination. A haiku by Basho, the famous Japanese poet of the Edo period, is also included.

The Japanese American National Museum is located at 100 N. Central Ave. in Los Angeles’ Little Tokyo neighborhood. Local parking information is available at For more information call 213.625.0414.



Common Ground: The Heart of Community
Incorporating hundreds of objects, documents, and photographs collected by JANM, this exhibition chronicles 130 years of Japanese American history, from the early days of the Issei pioneers through the World War II incarceration to the present.

Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty
Through April 26, 2015
Organized as part of the global icon’s 40th-anniversary celebrations, Hello! examines the colorful history of Hello Kitty and her influence on popular culture. The exhibition includes an extensive product survey, with rare and unique items from the Sanrio archives, alongside a selection of innovative contemporary artworks inspired by Hello Kitty and her world. Hello! is a specially ticketed exhibition.

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About the Japanese American National Museum (JANM)

Established in 1985, the Japanese American National Museum promotes understanding and appreciation of America’s ethnic and cultural diversity by sharing the Japanese American experience. Located in the historic Little Tokyo district of downtown Los Angeles, JANM is a hybrid institution that straddles traditional museum categories and strives to provide a voice for Japanese Americans as well as a forum that enables all people to explore their own heritage and culture. Since opening to the public, JANM has presented over 70 exhibitions onsite and traveled 6 of its exhibitions to over 30 locations, including the Smithsonian Institution and the Ellis Island Museum in the United States, and several leading cultural museums in Japan and South America.

JANM is located at 100 N. Central Ave., Los Angeles. Museum hours are Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Thursday from noon to 8 p.m. General admission is $9 adults, $5 students and seniors, free for members and children under age five. Admission is free to everyone on Thursdays from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and every third Thursday of the month from noon to 8 p.m. General admission prices and free admission times may not apply to specially ticketed exhibitions. Closed Monday, 4th of July, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day. For more information visit or call 213.625.0414.



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