Image of hourglass diary scene in A Life in Pieces: The Diary and Letters of Stanley Hayami

Current Exhibition

A Life in Pieces: The Diary and Letters of Stanley Hayami

A Life in Pieces: The Diary and Letters of Stanley Hayami debuted June 9 at the Tribeca Festival 2021 and brings to life the diary and letters of a Los Angeles teenager whose Japanese American family was imprisoned by the U.S government during World War II.

The exhibition at JANM features three versions of this video:

  • a 360-degree, interactive video that was created from the virtual reality (VR) film and can be viewed on a smartphone or mobile device
  • a non-interactive version that can be viewed in the Terasaki Orientation Theater on the Museum’s first floor. 
  • the original Virtual Reality (VR) version that can be viewed with VR goggles. Time slots are limited, reservations recommended. (See below)

All videos were created by Nonny de la Peña of Emblematic Group, a producer of virtual, augmented, and mixed reality; and Sharon Yamato in collaboration with JANM. (See cast and credits below)

 

 

VIRTUAL REALITY (VR) TICKETS

Virtual Reality (VR) is a three-dimensional (3-D) immersive audio visual experience in which a person can interact within an artificial 3-D environment using electronic devices, such as special goggles. 

This experience creates an immersive virtual reality audio visual experience. Some people may experience nausea, disorientation, vertigo, seizures, motion sickness, general discomfort, headaches, eye strain, anxiety, or other physical, mental, or health-related issues and symptoms.

Time slots for the A Life in Pieces VR video experience are limited. Advance, timed reservations are recommended. 

  • Timed slots are available every Saturday, limited to two slots every 30 minutes. 
  • Reservations are released one month in advance.
  • Please arrive 10 minutes before your reservation. The last reservation is at 4:30 p.m. 
  • The VR experience total time is 30 minutes.
  • Visitors who are age 14 and under MUST HAVE adult or guardian signed consent.
  • Use by individuals under the age of 14 is not advised.
  • Each individual (adult or child) must make a reservation and sign a disclaimer to use the VR goggles.  

GET TICKETS

 

Cast & Credits

PROJECT CREATOR
Nonny de la Peña, PhD

PRODUCER
Dan Brower

LEAD ENGINEER
Chaitanya Shah

ART DIRECTOR
Charlie Park

KEY COLLABORATOR
Sharon Yamato

QUILL ANIMATOR
Haley Tomaszewski

TECHNICAL DIRECTOR
Jonathan Yomayuza

CAST
Kurt Kanazawa, Nobuaki Shimamoto, Sachiyo K, Kristen Hayashi, Kawai Akiona, Jesse McBride

Nonny de la Peña, the “Godmother of virtual reality” and head of Emblematic Group, uses cutting-edge technologies to tell stories—both fictional and news-based—that create intense, empathic engagement on the part of viewers. She pioneered walk-around virtual reality, now known as the field of immersive journalism, with the first ever VR documentary, Hunger in Los Angeles, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2012. Moreover, Use of Force, her immersive documentary experience that puts the viewer on scene when migrant Anastasio Hernandez Rojas was killed by border patrol on the U.S./Mexico border in 2010, was the first ever virtual reality piece showcased at a Tribeca Film Festival in 2014. 

Sharon Yamato is a writer/filmmaker who wrote, produced, and directed Out of Infamy: Michi Nishiura Weglyn; A Flicker in Eternity, based on the diary and letters of WWII veteran Stanley Hayami; and Moving Walls, a story about what happened to the barracks at the Heart Mountain concentration camp. She is the author of the accompanying book, Moving Walls: Preserving the Barracks of America’s Concentration Camps, and co-author of Jive Bomber: A Sentimental Journey, a memoir of Bruce T. Kaji, the founding president of the Japanese American National Museum. She is currently writing and directing a documentary on civil rights activist and attorney Wayne Collins, who helped restore U.S. citizenship to more than 5,000 Japanese American renunciants during WWII. 

Kurt Kanazawa is a Los Angeles native. A Juilliard School, Columbia University, and Harvard-Westlake graduate, Kurt plays the title role of Stanley Hayami in A Life in Pieces: The Diary and Letters of Stanley Hayami. Kurt’s first acting gig was on the Italian drama series Provaci ancora Prof! (Rai 1) while living in Milan. He has also appeared on Grey’s Anatomy. Formerly, he was an award-winning opera singer featured in The New York Times and Time Magazine. Kurt is fluent in five languages (English, Japanese, French, Italian, and Spanish) and has also worked as a narrator or director on 50+ audiobook titles. Notably, Kurt’s grandmother, Shimeji Ryusaki Kanazawa, is known as “The Florence Nightingale of Hawaii” for her efforts during WWII.

 

July 09, 2021 - January 09, 2022

Japanese American National Museum

100 N. Central Ave.

Los Angeles, CA 90012

A Los Angeles native, Stanley Hayami is an ordinary American teenager from Mark Keppel High School in Alhambra writing in his journal about school and his dreams of becoming an artist or writer. But this is 1942, and his Japanese American family is imprisoned at Heart Mountain concentration camp in Wyoming. The young teen’s words and sketches are a window into his everyday life and feelings. Stanley opens up about his family’s incarceration, the military draft, and the importance of serving his country. 

In 1944, Stanley is drafted into the U.S. Army’s 442nd Regimental Combat Team, the segregated, Japanese American unit that would become the most decorated unit in U.S. history for its size and length of service. Stanley’s letters home to his family reveal the hardships from the European front lines, while also keeping a positive outlook, so as not to worry his parents. At the age of 19, Stanley is killed in Italy while trying to rescue a fellow soldier during combat. His legacy lives on through his diary, art, and letters donated to JANM by his family.

In A Life in Pieces: The Diary and Letters of Stanley Hayami, his writings from camp and wartime letters are brought to life with an interactive, 360-degree video that can be viewed on a mobile device and a non-interactive version that can be viewed in the Terasaki Orientation Theater. A virtual reality (VR) version is available with limited time slots, reservations recommended (Get Tickets). His artwork, journal entries, artifacts, and letters will also be on display. 

A Life in Pieces: The Diary and Letters of Stanley Hayami was created by Nonny de la Peña of Emblematic and Sharon Yamato in collaboration with the Japanese American National Museum. It had its World Premiere at the Tribeca Festival 2021 in the Immersive category on June 9.

See Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for more details. FAQ

 

 

Sponsored by:

  • U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant Program 
  • The California Civil Liberties Public Education Program 

Additional support provided by:

  • The Henri and Tomoye Takahashi Charitable Foundation
  • Department of Cultural Affairs, City of Los Angeles
  • California Humanities
  • The Kosasa Foundation
  • Pasadena Arts Alliance

 

Media Sponsor: The Rafu Shimpo

July 09, 2021 - January 09, 2022

Japanese American National Museum

100 N. Central Ave.

Los Angeles, CA 90012

A Los Angeles native, Stanley Hayami is an ordinary American teenager from Mark Keppel High School in Alhambra writing in his journal about school and his dreams of becoming an artist or writer. But this is 1942, and his Japanese American family is imprisoned at Heart Mountain concentration camp in Wyoming. The young teen’s words and sketches are a window into his everyday life and feelings. Stanley opens up about his family’s incarceration, the military draft, and the importance of serving his country. 

In 1944, Stanley is drafted into the U.S. Army’s 442nd Regimental Combat Team, the segregated, Japanese American unit that would become the most decorated unit in U.S. history for its size and length of service. Stanley’s letters home to his family reveal the hardships from the European front lines, while also keeping a positive outlook, so as not to worry his parents. At the age of 19, Stanley is killed in Italy while trying to rescue a fellow soldier during combat. His legacy lives on through his diary, art, and letters donated to JANM by his family.

In A Life in Pieces: The Diary and Letters of Stanley Hayami, his writings from camp and wartime letters are brought to life with an interactive, 360-degree video that can be viewed on a mobile device and a non-interactive version that can be viewed in the Terasaki Orientation Theater. A virtual reality (VR) version is available with limited time slots, reservations recommended (Get Tickets). His artwork, journal entries, artifacts, and letters will also be on display. 

A Life in Pieces: The Diary and Letters of Stanley Hayami was created by Nonny de la Peña of Emblematic and Sharon Yamato in collaboration with the Japanese American National Museum. It had its World Premiere at the Tribeca Festival 2021 in the Immersive category on June 9.

See Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for more details. FAQ

 

 

Sponsored by:

  • U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant Program 
  • The California Civil Liberties Public Education Program 

Additional support provided by:

  • The Henri and Tomoye Takahashi Charitable Foundation
  • Department of Cultural Affairs, City of Los Angeles
  • California Humanities
  • The Kosasa Foundation
  • Pasadena Arts Alliance

 

Media Sponsor: The Rafu Shimpo

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