Monday, March 8, 2010

Renwick exhibits arts & crafts from Heart Mountain and other WWII internment camps

This painting was by an unidentified artist interned at Heart Mountain Internment Camp in Park County, Wyoming, during World War II. "Camp Scene," wood and paint (note Heart Mountain in background). Collection of the Japanese American Museum of San José, From "Art of Gaman" by Delphine Hirasuna, ©2005, Ten Speed Press. Terry Heffernan photo.

It is one of the works in "The Art of Gaman: Arts and Crafts from the Japane-American Internment Camps, 1942-1946," showing now at the Renwick Gallery in Washington, D.C. The exhibit runs through Jan. 30, 2011.

From the Smithsonian American Art Museum catalog:

Arts and crafts became essential for simple creature comforts and emotional survival. These objects—tools, teapots, furniture, toys and games, musical instruments, pendants and pins, purses and ornamental displays—are physical manifestations of the art of gaman, a Japanese word that means "to bear the seemingly unbearable with dignity and patience."

The exhibition is organized by San Francisco-based author and guest curator Delphine Hirasuna, and is based on her 2005 book The Art of Gaman, published by Ten Speed Press.

The exhibition is presented under the honorary patronage of The Honorable Norman Y. Mineta. Mr. Mineta, a former Congressman, Secretary of Transportation, and Regent of the Smithsonian, was interned as a child at Heart Mountain.

FMI: Read recent posts on the museum’s blog, Eye Level