In case you missed it.

 In case you missed it, here is this week's edition.
View this email in your browser

ETC. Photo of the day by Daniel Dreifuss. John Rexine and Noah Gonzalez from the installation team hang pieces for the “Shadows from the Past show at the Monterey Museum of Art. Submit your best horizontal photos. (Please include the location where the photo was taken in the caption.)

Reflecting on the long shadows of history.

Good morning.

Agata Popęda here, reflecting on 80-year-long shadows of history.

An American friend asked me what I am writing about this week and I said: The concentration camps that Japanese-Americans were sent to during World War II, and art rooted in that experience. 

Specifically, I was referring to the “Shadows from the Past” exhibit, which features the work of eight Japanese-American artists and is currently on display at the Monterey Museum of Art—and on the cover of this week’s print edition of the Weekly.

“I think the term is ‘internment’ camps,’” he corrected me, without bad intention. It was a correction that made sense because English is my second-language and I absorbed American history from books, not from ancestors or family anecdotes that provide for real understanding of things.

After this exchange, I went back to the booklet that accompanies the exhibit and includes introductory statements from artists Lydia Nakashima Degarrod, Reiko Fujii, Lucien Kubo, Wendy Maruyama, Tom Nakashima, Na Omi, Judy Shintani, Masako Takahashi, Jerry Takigawa and the exhibit’s curator Gail Enns.

The term “concentration camps” is found in an opening quote—“Concentration camps occur when a government in power removes a minority group from the general population—and the rest of society lets it happen,” it says, in a statement attributed to Densho.org, a grassroots organization dedicated to sharing the story of World War II-era incarceration of Japanese-Americans. In other words, the exhibit doesn’t hesitate to recognize the events of 1942-1946 for what they were, and name them by their proper names. I shouldn’t either. 

In the winter of 1942, two months after the attack on Pearl Harbor, U.S. Executive Order 9066, signed by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, sent more than 120,000 Japanese-Americans to concentration camps. They were transported away from their homes and communities and jobs and personal possessions and imprisoned for as many as four years in tar paper barracks in heavily guarded camps throughout the American West.

In the Monterey Museum of Art’s “Shadows” exhibit, which opened Sept. 9 and runs until Jan. 9, 2022, eight sansei artists (third-generation Japanese immigrants) reflect on this legacy.

An exhibit about darkness is full of dark colors and dull forms that speak about the monotony and hopelessness of camp life. And the dark tones are certainly there: In black kimonos (Takahashi) and in black and white photos and symbols of oppression, like cages (Nakashima). What shocks are rosy, floral patterns by Degarrod—Scattered Seeds of the Cotton Bolls: The Legacy of WWII on my Japanese Peruvian Family—the only cheerful element and a true ornament of the exhibit. 

I like to think these flowers represent the changing times. And also, perhaps, that painful or shameful chapters of history must ultimately be faced—if, for now, through art and rosy petals.

-Agata Popęda, aga@mcweekly.com

Read It Now
BY THE NUMBERS

The number of Japanese-Americans who were relocated to concentration camps in the American West following the attack on Pearl Harbor and the signing of U.S. Executive Order 9066.

SPONSORED: EAT + DRINK

Estéban Restaurant Indoor & Patio Dining,Take Out & Delivery daily from 4:30pm. Featuring Signature Tapas, Paella, & Seasonal Specials, Click for menus. 700 Munras Ave., Monterey, 831-375-0176

Osteria Al Mare Indoor & Outdoor Dining plus Takeout (call or order online click here) Tues-Sun 11:30am-9pm. 920.2833, 32 Cannery Row, Monterey.

Whaling Station Steakhouse Indoor Dining & Takeout Daily from 4:30pm. Click for menu/order. 373.3778, 763 Wave St, Monterey

The Sardine Factory Indoor dining nightly at 5pm. Special Early Dinner Menu from 5-6pm. Click here for menus, details and reservations or to place a takeout order. 701 Wave Street, Monterey, 831-373-3775

Advertise here for $49 for 12 words / +$10 xlarge / +$1 add'l. word
Email sales@mcweekly.com or call 831-394-5656.
 
On the Cover
Reflecting 75 years later, eight artists interpret the lasting legacy of Japanese internment.
News
Staffing levels vary, but nursing levels are a concern for local hospitals amid Covid surge.
Opinion

SURELY SHIRLEY… Squid often pines for the pre-internet days, when people had to pick up a book or a newspaper to learn things, or even – get this – do research at a library!

How far should pesticide transparency go?

Letters to the Editor.

Hot Picks

The To-Do List

PLEASE SUPPORT LOCAL & INDEPENDENT JOURNALISM

Donate
BEST OF MONTEREY BAY® REAL ESTATE
Cartoons

We welcome your comments, feedback and tips. 

Tip Line
ShareShare
TweetTweet
ForwardForward
Get this newsletter direct to your inbox.
Copyright © 2021 Monterey County Weekly, All rights reserved.


Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.