‘Gaman’ Author/Curator to Speak at Corona Library

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Bird Pins, Himeko Fukuhara and Kazuko Matsumoto, scrap wood and paint, National Japanese American Historical Society. From “The Art of Gaman: Arts and Crafts from the Japanese American Internment Camps 1942-1946,” © 2005 by Delphine Hirasuna, Ten Speed Press, Berkeley. Photo by Terry Heffernan.

CORONA — Delphine Hirasuna, author of “The Art of Gaman,” will speak on Monday, Oct. 15, at 7 p.m. at the Corona Public Library, 650 S. Main St., Corona.

In both a book and a traveling exhibition, Hirasuna presents artworks rendered from everyday objects by Japanese Americans held in U.S. detention camps from 1942 to 1946. Surrounded by barbed wire and guard towers, some sought courage and solace in art. Using found materials at first and later what they could order by catalog, they whittled and carved, painted and etched, stitched and crocheted. They carved sculptures of bears, birds and elephants, as well as three monkeys and a scholar; built chairs, chests of drawers, model ships and heart pendants from scrap wood; wove baskets from unraveled twine; made rings from peach pits and pins from shells and beans.

What they created, Hirasuna says, is a celebration of the nobility of the human spirit under adversity.

The exhibition has been shown throughout the U.S. at such venues as the Museum of Craft and Folk Art in San Francisco, the Smithsonian’s American Art Museum, and most recently the Museum of International Folk Art in Santa Fe, and is starting a national tour of Japan next month.

A former columnist for The Rafu Shimpo and The Hokubei Mainichi, Hirasuna is also co-author of “100 Baseball Icons,” “Long May She Wave: A Graphic History of the American Flag,” “Flavors of Japan,” and “Typewise,” among others.

For more information on this and other library events, call (951) 736-2381 or visit www.coronapubliclibrary.org.

 

 

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