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Lowe Gallery exhibition by SU alumnus to explore WWII internment camps
Lowe Gallery exhibition by SU alumnus to explore WWII internment campsOctober 25, 2004Amy Schmitzaemehrin@syr.edu
An exhibition of work by Syracuse University alumnus Roger Shimomura G’69 will be on exhibit at SU’s Joe and Emily Lowe Art Gallery from Oct. 31-Nov. 21. An opening reception will be held on Oct. 31 from 3-5 p.m. in the Shaffer Art Building. The exhibition, titled “Three Suites from Inside the Barbed Wire,” is free and open to the public.
In paint, ink and etching, Shimomura’s creations are an exploration of the socio-political issues of Asian Americans, inspired by 56 years of diaries kept by his late grandmother, who was interned during World War II. The results are bold, illustration-like depictions that offer a critical and voyeuristic view of Japanese-American culture and the Japanese-American reality.
“Shimomura’s work is as relevant to our experiences today as they were during World War II,” says Edward Aiken, director of the Lowe Gallery. “He focuses on the ways in which war can act as a lens that so distorts our vision of patriotism that we can begin to view our fellow citizens as foreign enemies.”
Shimomura was born in Seattle in 1939 to Japanese-American parents. His first few years were spent interned with his family at the Puyallup State Fairgrounds while permanent camps were being built by the U.S. government. Later, he and his family moved to Camp Minidoka in southern Idaho. After the war ended, the Shimomura family was permitted to return to Seattle.
Shimomura holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington and graduated from SU with his master’s degree in 1969. After leaving SU, he began teaching at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, where he currently holds the title of Distinguished Professor Emeritus.
The Lowe Gallery is open Tuesday and Thursday-Sunday, noon-5 p.m. and Wednesday, noon-8 p.m. The Lowe Gallery is handicapped accessible.