In the 1940’s over 120,000 Japanese Americans were imprisoned in internment camps. From newborns to aging grandfathers, all of their lives were changed dramatically. The latest fall textile exhibit at the Cannon Beach History Center & Museum features the work of Cathy Erickson and focuses on the hardships that Japanese Americans faced during their internment during World War II. Much of the work was done in collaboration with Margaret Chula, an internationally known haiku poet. Photographs, letters, and historical documents were used as background information, as well as visiting with people who took part in this piece of American History. The series includes volunteer work at archaeology digs at the Manzanar National Historic Site, which is located in California, as well as work at a local Japanese American Museum. The quilts and poems in What Remains: Japanese Americans in Internment Camps offer visual and poetic insight into this period in history. Each poem speaks in the voice of a Japanese American imprisoned during World War II.
What Remains: Japanese Americans in Internment Camps has shown at the Japanese Gardens in Portland and other areas across the nation. Quilts from the show have also been displayed in Brazil where the artist won a viewer’s choice award. The nearly twenty-piece exhibit will explore the stories, experiences, and history behind Japanese Internment Camps in American during World War II through textile art.
This exhibit is part of a series of events relating to the WWII on the Oregon Coast exhibit on display now through February of 2016. The exhibit was made possible in part by a grant from Oregon Humanities (OH), a statewide nonprofit organization and an independent affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, which funds OH’s grant program.
This textile exhibit has been brought to you by Cannon Beach’s Center Diamond, which is coincidentally where Erickson purchased her first piece of fabric. Center Diamond has been selling fabric for over 20 years in Cannon Beach. Contemporary batiks, brights, Asian, landscape/beach, and modern fabrics are their focus, but they also have lots of sewing supplies and notions. Look for their custom made Haystack Rock batik and Tufted Puffin fabric and buttons – all available only at Center Diamond.
This exhibit will open on Saturday, October 24th and will be on display through February of 2016.