Visual Arts


“Frank Kunishige at The Seattle Public Library” is the first solo exhibition of that photographer since his death. Kunishige was born in Japan in 1878 and arrived in Seattle in 1917. His early work here was for the Edward S. Curtis Studio. He was an important member of The Seattle Camera Club, a primarily all-Japanese camera club founded by Dr. Kyo Koike that focused on “Pictorialism”. Kunishige’s work had a soft focus and he printed his work on rough textured custom-made paper that had a mysterious, dream-like quality.  His photo of visiting modern dancer Aida Kawakami remains a classic. The show runs through Dec. 15 at Seattle’s Central Library’s Level 8 Gallery with 30 photographs on view and more available for viewing online. Guest-curated by Elizabeth Brown, former chief curator of Henry Art Gallery. 1000 Fourth Ave. Go to for more details.

Roger Shimomura, whose past work was recently highlighted at Tacoma Art Museum is back in Seattle with a show of new work entitled “Great American Muse” on view from Nov. 5 – Dec. 24. Inspired by Tom Wesselmann’s “Great American Nude” series  which saw the artist interplay the female figure, still life objects and a familiar piece of contemporary art, Shimomura riffs off this premise and enriches it with his own mix of of race and culture. Opening reception is Nov. 5 from 6 – 8pm. Paired with “Universal Archive: Recent Collaged Linocuts” by the great South African artist William Kentridge.  Greg Kucera Gallery, Inc. is at 212 Third Ave. in downtown Seattle.(206) 624-0770 or go to

“Beauty of The Hand – Textiles From Across The Globe, The Collection of Leslie Grace” will be on view at Aijoya Thornton Place. Grace was for many years, the owner of La Tienda on University Ave., a well -known store for folk arts from around the world. Around 50 pieces of ethnic textile will be on view. Opening reception is Wed., Nov. 18 from 4:30pm – 6:30pm. Co-curated by June Sekiguchi and Anna Macrae. 450 N.E. 100th St. in Seattle. Call (206) 306-7920 by Nov. 15 to RSVP.

“Shades of Autumn” is the title of the Puget Sound Sumi Artists Member’s Exhibit held at APPC on Nov. 19 from 4 – 6pm. 4851 S. Tacoma Way in Tacoma.

The 9th Annual Simple Cup Show 2015 remains on view through December. This annual event showcases a variety of charming and affordable cups made by ceramic artists from around the country and from Japan. KOBO at Higo at 602-608 South Jackson. (206) 381-3000.  A sister store KOBO Capitol Hill is at 814 E. Roy St. (206) 726-0704.

“Thought Patterns” is a group show featuring artists and craftspersons working in diverse media and how they construct their ideas in patterned and repetitive ways. Features the work of Louise Kikuchi, June Sekiguchi and others. Through Feb. 14. Bainbridge Art Museum at  550 Winslow Way E. on Bainbridge Island. (206) 842-4431 or go to  Open daily. Free.

The City of Seattle Office of Arts & Culture presents “Art Interruptions”, a series of ephemeral moments of surprise and reflection in the Central Area Neighborhood Greenway on view now through Jan. 3, 2016. See the work of seven artists including Naoko Morisawa, Carina del Rosario, Hanako O’Leary, Bayu Angermeyer, Esther Ervin, Alison Foshee and Sonya Stockton. For details or to get a map of locations, call (206) 684-7171.

Book art, the wonderful world of books made by artists doesn’t get the attention it deserves. These one-of-a-kind creations are as wide-ranging and creative as the imagination of the artists that make them. Locally, we have a whole room devoted to them at the new Bainbridge Museum of Art and the treasure that is the book art collection at UW Special Collections at the UW Library. Now we get another chance to enter the magical world of this art in a new group show put together at Whatcom Museum’s Lightcatcher Building. “Unhinged: Book Art On The Cutting Edge” showcases over 70 works by 63 artists from the U.S., Australia, Canada and Great Britain. Includes work by Julie Chen and Long Bin-Chen. Curated by Barbara Matilsky.  Through  Jan. 3, 2016. 250 Flora St. in Bellingham, WA. 250 Flora St. (360) 778-8930 or email [email protected].

“Genius/21 Century/Seattle” is a large-scale celebration of exceptional multidisciplinary and collaborative artistic practice in Seattle in the twenty-first century. Featured are over sixty visual artists, filmmakers, writers, theater artists, composers, musicians, choreographers, dancers, and arts organization.  Artists participating in “Genius” were selected by leading arts writers and the Seattle artistic community to be recipients of “The Stranger Genius Award”. Eyvind Kang, Lead Pencil Studio, Susie J. Lee and D.K. Pan are among the list of distinguished artists included in this exhibition. The exhibition  and its more than thirty-five events going on until Jan. 10, 2016. On Sat., Nov. 21 at 11am, Susie J. Lee will talk about her Yesler Community Center/Frye Art Museum Project. Frye Art Museum. 704 Terry Ave. (206) 622-9250. Admission and parking are always free. Closed Mondays.

Cornish instructor/sculptor Robert Rhee who ran an artist Airbnb  earlier has a solo show of his own work made from gourds in cages. The work is stark, spare and ultimately moving if  his earlier work in “Out of Sight” is anything to go by. This solo show is entitled “Winter Wheat” and is on view through Nov. 28. Glassbox Gallery at 831 Seattle Blvd. S. Go to for details.

Alano Edzerza from Tahiti showcases his woodcarving, jewelry and prints in “Moving Forward” on view  through Nov. 28 at Stonington Gallery in Pioneer Square in Seattle. 125 South Jackson St. (206) 405-4040 or go to

“Here’s What I Got” is a grab-bag of work by gallery artists including Stephanie Pui-Mun Law. Krab Jab Studio at 5268  Airport Way S. # 150.  Through Dec. 5. For details, go to

“Rebels Of The Floating World” is the title of a forthcoming show featuring work by two acclaimed contemporary urban artists who explore our complex transitions between tradition and history. New work by Jonathan Wakuda Fischer who has turned the Japanese woodblock tradition on its head and made it contemporary and Louie Gong  who will be showing a new series of paintings combining Native American and Chinese motifs. During the month of Nov., the gallery presents “Momiji 1.0”, a generative digital installation by Fischer, Gong and Benjamin van Citters and Daneil Shumow. In this unique collaboration, an original computer program used algorithms to generate digital imagery that interplays with hand-painted wall elements, creating an evolving installation that will never repeat.  Show remains on  view through Nov. 28.  An online exhibition catalog is also available. On Sat., Nov. 28 from noon to 5pm, there will be a closing party for the show and a Holiday Pop-up Store opening (remains on view through Dec. 31) of small works and artful gifts by gallery artists. Artxchange Gallery. 512 First Ave. S. (206) 839-0377.

“No Boundaries” is the NW touring group exhibit entitled “Peripheral Visions”  showcasing artists with disabilities. Includes work by Floyd Tokuda, Giel Ahn and Lupita Cano. On view during Nov. at the Washington State Convention Center in Galleria 2 in the NW corner on level 2. Curated by Shariana Mundi. For details, go to [email protected].

New work by Margot Quan Knight at ArtsWest Gallery. On view  through Nov. 22. 4711 California Ave. S.W. (206) 938-0339 or go to

“Slash And Burn” is a group show curated by Suze Woolf that looks at artists who either cut or burn material to make their art. The work of Naoko Morisawa and June Sekiguchi is included.  Opening reception is Dec. 11 from 6 – 8:30pm. Kirkland Art Center at 620 Market St. in Kirkland. (425) 822-7161.

Photographer Michael Kenna has spent a considerable amount of time in Japan taking images of landscapes and still-lives. There is a pristine, precise delicacy to his work that catches every detail. A new series entitled “Forms of Japan: Photographs” comes to G. Gibson Gallery.  The show is on view through Nov. 28 sharing the space with paintings by Mary Iverson. 300  South Washington in Pioneer Square. Go to for details.

“Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty” is a show that should prove to be a family favorite. On loan from the Japanese American National Museum, the show lands in Seattle at the EMP Museum at Seattle Center  through May 15, 2016. The show looks on the history of the Japanese icon and her influence on popular culture. Includes an extensive product survey, with rare and unique items from the Sanrio archives, alongside a selection of innovative contemporary artworks inspired by Hello Kitty and her world. 5th Ave. N. (206) 770-2700. Etc. Japanese snacks  from food trucks. “J Pop” dance party. $25 general admission ($20 for EMP members), $10  for youth 5 – 17. Free for kids 4 and under.

Abmeyer & Wood presents the work of two contemporary sculptors, Erika Sanada and Calvin Ma. Sanada makes strange sculptures of animals and Ma turns robots into wooden action figures. Nov. 30 – Jan. 2. 1210 Second Ave. (206) 628-9501 or go to

Seattle Art Museum downtown is “Conversations With Curators” series is back. The series takes place Wednesday evenings between November and goes on through June, 2016. There is a 6pm Happy Hour in the South Hall and the lectures start at 7pm in the Plestcheeff Auditorium. Some highlights include the following. Chiyo Ishikawa, SAM’s Deputy Director for a Art and Curator of European Painting and Sculpture gives a talk entitled “Crossed Paths: How Three European Paintings Came To SAM, Why Two Stayed, And Why One Left” on Dec. 16, 2015. “First Under Heaven: Korean Celadon” is the title of a talk by Xiaojin Wu, Curator of Japanese  and Korean Art on Feb. 17, 2016. March 16 is “A Special Evening With SAM’s Newest Curator” which introduces Foong Ping, the Foster Foundation Curator of Chinese Art. Tickets are $7 per talk with a series pass at $49. Available to museum members only but members may purchase tickets for their guests at $10 per lecture. Get tickets online at or by phone or in person at either SAM or the Asian Art Museum. 1300 First Ave.  (206) 654-3210 or go to

The Yakima Valley Museum has the current exhibit, “Land of Joy and Sorrow – Japanese Pioneers of the Yakima Valley” up until 2018. It tells the history of Japanese families who created a community there before the war. Only 10% of families returned to re-settle there after the war. 2105 Teton Dr. (509) 248-0741. In related news, a softball from this collection that saw play at Heart Mountain internment camp and owned by George Hirahara has been given to the Smithsonian and was on display in the incarceration section of the exhibit, “The Price of Freedom – Americans at War”.  (As reported in the North American Post.) In other news, Hirahara’s Oregon photographs of the Japanese American post-WWII experience in the Pacific Northwest are now available online at Densho. To see his documentation of Nikkei Oregon life in “New Partner Collection: Frank C. Hirahara Photographs From The Oregon Nikkei Endowment”, go  to Also a profile of the Washington State University Hirahara Collection of photos from Heart Mountain is now featured on the Japanese American History Not For Sale Facebook Page by going to

Cascadia Art Museum is a new Northwest museum in Edmonds, WA. Their inaugural exhibition is entitled “A Fluid Tradition:  Northwest Watercolor Society…The First 75 Years” on view through Jan. 3, 2016.  It includes the work of George Tsutakawa amongst dozens of others. 190 Sunset Ave.  in Edmonds. Go to for details.

Seattle ceramic artist Akio Takamori  and Lead Pencil Studio (Annie Han & Daniel Milhayo) were both recipients of the Contemporary Northwest Art Awards given by the Portland Art Museum  which will give all winners a group show which has been re-scheduled to run from Feb. 13 – May 8 in 2016. The extension will allow some artists to do brand-new work site-specific to the PAM space.  “Anish Kapoor – Prints from the Collection of Jordan Schnitzer” remains on view until Oct. 25, 2015.  The Portland Art Museum is at 1219 SW Park Ave. Go to for details.

Portland artist Robert Dozono has a show of new work entitled “Garbage Paintings and Other Works” at Blackfish Gallery through Nov. 28, 2015. Opening reception is Nov. 5 from 6 – 9pm. 420 N.S. Ninth Ave. in Portland. (503) 224-2634 or go to

The Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art located on the University of Oregon campus in Eugene has the following – Opening Oct. 3 and remaining on view until Jan. 3, 2016 is “Expanding Frontiers – The Wadsworth Collection of Post War Japanese Prints”. Remaining on view until July 24, 2016 is “‘True’ Korean Landscapes & Virtuous Scholars” and “Benevolence  & Loyalty: Filial Piety in Chinese Art” up until July 31, 2016. 1430 Johnson Lane. (541) 346-3027.


New and recent shows /activities at the Wing include the following – Coming Thurs., Nov. 5 from 6 – 8pm is the opening of the show, “Tatau/Tattoo: Embodying Resistance. Explores the practices and cultural significance of tattoos, highlighting the unique perspectives of the South Pacific communities in the Pacific Northwest. Free. Members and special guests are invited to RSVP. Reception open to the public. “Khmer American: Naga Sheds Its Skin” opens on Thurs., Dec. 10 from 6 – 8pm.  War has had a huge impact on Khmer culture and identity. Despite these challenges, the community continues to shape the US and Cambodia. Members and invited guests can RSVP at 7pm open to the public. Free. “Tales of Tails: Animals in Children’s Books  is a recent show to open at the museum. “CONSTRUCT/S” is a group show that presents a diverse group of six international, national and local female artists who will transform The Wing’s art gallery into a multi-sensory, interactive exploration of identity, subjectivity, history, culture and gender. It is curated by Dr. Stacey Uradomo-Barre.  It remains on view through April 17th, 2016. Artists include the following – Terry Acebo Davis from California recreates her mother’s bedroom drawing upon the fact that she is suffering from dementia. This room is a place she yearns to return to and the piece deals with a fragmented narrative of memory, loss, identity, and Filipino American culture.  Kaili Chun from Hawai’I has an interactive installation of man-made steel bars that unlock to grapple with issues of subjectivity and community and reflect the continuous socio-political negotiation of Native Hawaiians with the mainstream society. Yong Soon Min from California, after a career exploring Korean American Identity and colonialism now examines her own personal struggle of pain and trauma as she tries to recover from a cerebral hemorrhage that affected her ability to form language and memories.  Min has shown previously in Seattle with temporary art installations. Tamiko Thiel (Germany) & Midori Kono Thiel (Seattle) present a mother-daughter collaboration combining traditional calligraphy with mobile technology. Their augmented reality installation virtually links art and culture with physical landmarks significant to the local Japanese American community. Lynne Yamamoto from Massachusetts went to Evergreen College in Olympia as a student. She has shown here previously with an installation at Suyama Space and a show at Greg Kucera Gallery. Her  new piece here was inspired by the early 20th century tent houses of Japanese immigrant farmers.  This work interweaves family memories and community history, evoking the migratory nature of the Japanese American farming community. She also has a public art commission at the Seattle Public Library planned as well. A catalog for this show is available. The Young Family Collection of Qing Dynasty robes opened Jan. 15th . “Who Gets To Belong?” is an exhibit that looks at the Immigration Act of 1965 that lifted the quotas for Asian Pacific Islander immigration. This exhibit which opened March 5th will look at the cultural and political climate that  pushed for this act. “Do You Know Bruce?” is a major new show on the personal, intimate story of martial arts artist and film star Bruce Lee and the significance of Seattle in his life. Opens Oct. 4th with the full support of the Lee Family. The Wing is the only museum in the world, outside of Hong Kong, to present an exhibition about Bruce Lee’s life. The Lee family has plans to eventually open a permanent museum on Bruce Lee’s life and legacy in the Chinatown-ID neighborhood. Year 2 of the exhibition opens Oct. 3rd, 2015 and digs deeper into the significance of Bruce Lee and his impact in media during a time of racial stereotypes and barriers. Includes text panels by national blogger Phil Yu (aka Angry Asian Man) plus Green Hornet toys, personal letters, behind-the-scenes photos from the sets of “Way of the Dragon” and “Enter the Dragon”, hand-written film notes, rare photos inside his early Chinatown studio and much much more.  A new set  of Bruce Lee’s Chinatown Tours begin Oct. 6th. Pork Filled Productions present a staged reading of “Tale Of The Shining Yonsei” on Thurs., Dec. 3 from 6 – 8pm. Follow Akira, a 4th generation Japanese American as he looks to Japanese fairy tales for help in how the handle the intricacies of dating and following your heart. Free. To help celebrate Bruce Lee’s 75th Birthday, all Bruce Lee merchandise will be 10% off on the weekend of Nov. 28-29. A free gift with any $20 purchase while supplies last. “Shop-o-Rama” is a special event in the Marketplace with lots of local artist pop-up shops, an Asian American Santa, book promotions and great discount specials every Sat. from Nov. 14 – Dec. 21. Free cookies & cider and free giftwrapping. Members can double their discount and a limited Year of the Sheep glass with gift membership purchase. For details, go to  The Museum is located at 719  South King St. (206) 623-5124 or  visit Closed Mondays. Tuesday – Sunday from 10am – 5pm. First Thursday of each month is free from 10am – 8pm. Third Saturday of each month is free from 10am – 8pm.

“Voices of Nisei Veterans – Permanent Exhibition and Collections”  is composed of rare collections preserved by the Nisei Veterans Committee and tells the story of Japanese American veterans before, during and after WW II. Access is by pre-arranged tour only. For reservations or information, email [email protected] or [email protected]. Jointly sponsored by the NVC Memorial Hall and The Wing. 1212 South King St.

“Pacific Voices” is an ongoing exhibit that celebrates the language, teachings, art, and cultural ceremonies of seventeen cultures from the Pacific Rim. Burke Museum at the University of Washington. 17th  Ave. NE & E 45th  Streets. (206) 543-5590 or try

Currently on view at Seattle Asian Art Museum in Volunteer Park –  First Free Saturday family activity takes place  from 11am – 2pm. “Paradox Of Place: Contemporary Korean Art” is a new show set for Oct. 31, 2015 – March 13, 2016 at the Tateuchi Galleries. This is the first major exhibition of Korean contemporary art in over a decade in Seattle. This show was put together in collaboration with Ms. Choi Eunju, former chief curator of the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Korea. Six leading-edge Korean contemporary artists’ representative works will be in this show. Works range from mix-media, installation, video art, to photography, all of which are prominent forms in Korean contemporary art. Co-organized by the Seattle Art Museum and National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea with generous support from the Korea Foundation. “Saturday University” is a series of talks on art and ideas at Seattle Asian Art Museum every morning at 9:30am $10 admission. . The series includes the following –Yasufumi Nakamori, associate Curator of Photography at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston will talk about the show he curated for that museum entitled “Experiments in Japanese Art & Photos, 1968-79” on Nov. 21. The Winter Saturday University Series will address topics under the theme of “Sites of Meaning: Cultural Heritage Preservation in Asia.” The opening lecture will be on Sat. Jan. 23rd at 9:30am and Stefan Simon, Director of the Yale University Institute for Cultural Heritage will kick it off. For complete information on all events, go to

Tacoma Art Museum has opened a new wing to accommodate the gift of a new collection. “ART OF THE AMERICAN WEST: The Haub Family Collection at Tacoma Art Museum just opened. Included in the present show is work by contemporary Chinese American artist Mian Situ. He creates epic paintings in the European tradition but inserts Chinese American immigrants as protagonists in scenes in which they’ve previously been missing. The photography of Seattle photographer Chao-Chen Yang is included in a group show entitled “Northwest in the West: Exploring Our Roots”. This show explores the distinct identity of Northwest art and how it has adopted, adapted and reacted against its western roots. A theme particularly apt and timely since the museum is building a new wing to house their new collection of Western art.  Both shows  through the fall of 2015. “Art AIDS America” is a groundbreaking exhibition that underscores the deep and unforgettable presence of HIV in American art from the 1980’s to the present. The late Martin Wong has work in this show. Co-curated by TAM Chief Curator Rock Hushka and Dr. Jonathan Katz who directs the Visual Studies Doctoral Program at the University of Buffalo. On view through Jan. 10th, 2016.Tacoma Art Museum is at 1701 Pacific Ave. (253) 272-4258 or go to

“Art Under $100” is an event that is doubling in size this year featuring 20 artists convening at the Seattle Design Center on Sat., Dec. 12 from 2 – 8pm. New this year is a ticketed VIP hour from 1 – 2pm which  allows patrons to get first pick of the coveted affordable artwork, along with champagne and chocolate. This worthy event is sponsored by South Park Arts, a non-profit dedicated to supporting, representing, and promoting art and artists of Seattle’s South Park Neighborhood. In Seattle  Design Center’s Artrium at 5701 – 6th Ave. S. For information, visit or follow it on facebook.

Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center in Portland has  “Oregon Nikkei: Reflections of an American Community” a show that celebrates the lives and contributions of Oregon’s Nikkei community, and evokes memories of shared experiences – from early settlement through the trials and tribulations of WWII and into the 21st century. On view through  Jan. 17, 2016 is “Gambatte! Legacy of an Enduring Spirit”.Open Tu. – Sat. 11am – 3pm and Sundays, noon – 3pm. 121 NW 2nd Ave. (503) 224-1458 or email [email protected].

“Meet Me at Higo” permanent exhibit- Part Two” presented and sponsored by the Wing  is a multi-media presentation and self-guided tour that tells the origins and history of the store as a Japanese American five and dime. At Kobo at Higo, 604 South Jackson. E-mail [email protected] or call (206) 381-3000.

The Art History Lecture Series with Rebecca Albiani for the upcoming year includes a series of talks on “Netsuke: Miniature Masterpieces of Japanese Sculpture” set for Jan.  14th at 11am and 7pm  and Jan. 15th at 11am. The talk is repeated three times. To register, call (206) 432-8200.

On view  through Jan. 3, 2016 is “Not Vanishing: Contemporary Expressions in Indigenous Art, 1977-2015”, an important show that examines the evolution of the contemporary Native American arts movement and the works of artists living in Washington, Oregon, Idaho and southern British Columbia. Museum of  Northwest Art in La Conner, WA. 121 s. First St. (360) 466-4446 or go to

Opening Dec. 11 and remaining on view until Jan. 24, 2016 is a survey of the work  of South Korean contemporary artist Kim Beon. His conceptually driven videos, installations and drawings brim over with a warm sense of humor. Vancouver Art Gallery at 750 Hornby St. in Vancouver BC, Canada. (604) 662-4719 or go to

The Asian Art Museum of San Francisco has the following shows – “Continuity And Pursuit” is a show of paintings by Yoong Bae until Dec. 13, 2015. “Picturing Sound, Creating Mood” is a series of twelve paintings from the 18th to 19th century that reveal the multisensory world of Indian painting up till Nov. 22, 2015.  On view from Oct. 30 – Feb. 7, 2016 will be “Looking East, How Japan Inspired Monet, Van Gogh And Other Western Artists”, a show created by Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. 200 Larkin St. (415) 581-3500.

“Raycraft is Dead” is the title of a mixed media installation by L.A. based South Korean artist Won Ju Im. In it, she deconstructs the spaces of her own home and invites the viewer to rethink our everyday experiences in our own spaces. Includes sculptures, video projection and collage. On view  until Dec.  6, 2015 at  the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts at 701 Mission in San Francisco. (415) 978-2700.

“New Stories from the Edge of Asia: Tabaimo” marks the first solo museum exhibition  of this amazing Japanese artist who uses alluring large-scale surreal animations that combine everyday objects and experiences. Opens Feb. 5, 2016 at the San Jose Museum of Art. 110 South Market St. (408) 271-6840. Not to miss!

The Japanese American National Museum has the following current and upcoming exhibitions.  Ongoing is “Common Ground: The Heart of Community” is a historical group show that incorporates hundreds of objects, documents and photographs collected by the Museum on over 130 years of Japanese American history.  On view until Jan. 24, 2016 is “Giant Robot Biennale 4” an annual show showcasing the diverse creative works brought together between the pages of that popular zine which is a staple of alternative Asian American pop culture. Looking further down the road is an important photography show entitled “Making Waves: Japanese American Photography, 1920 – 1940” tentatively set for Feb. 28 – June 26 of 2016 and curated by Southern California photography historian Dennis Reed who has curated a previous excellent show of the Japanese Camera Club of Los Angeles. 100 North Central Ave. (213) 625-0414.

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art has the following shows. “Islamic Art Now: Contemporary Art of the Middle East” remains on view until Jan. 3, 2016.  “Ritual Offerings in Tibetan Art” continues until Oct. 25. 2015. “Living for The Moment: Japanese Prints from the Barbara S. Bowman Collection” opens Oct. 4 and remains on view until Jan. 16, 2016. 5905 Wilshire Blvd. (323) 857-6010.

The Skirball Cultural Center in association with the Japanese American National Museum  presents “Manzanar: The Wartime Photographs of Ansel Adams” from Oct. 8 – Feb. 21, 2016.  In addition to Adam’s work, the exhibition includes other photographs, documents, publications, artifacts, and works of art that detail life and conditions at Manzanar and offer personal narratives of the experience. A range of propaganda posters, films, pamplets, and magazines portray the anger, prejudice, and overt racism fo the times. Additional material comes from Adam’s contemporaries, Dorothea Lange and Toyo Miyatake. But what is the cherry on top of the sundae (at least for me) is the inclusion of “Citizen 13660: The Art of Mine Okubo”. Her work cuts to the quick and gives a very honest and personal portrayal of how life was in the camps as lived by the inmates. Activities related to this show include the following – Classes entitled “In the Footsteps of Ansel Adams” Oct. 17, Nov. 6, Nov. 8, and Nov. 21. The film “Children of the Camps” is screened on Oct. 15 at 8pm. Public tours Tues. – Sun. beginning Oct. 15 at 1pm. A member program is Preview Day for the show on Oct. 7 from noon – 5pm. 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd. in Los Angeles. Free  on-site parking. (310) 440-4500.  

In related news, the Mine Okubo Collection at the Riverside City College is believed to be the most extensive repository of Mine Okubo’s papers and art work in a single location. This is a virtual treasure trove for people interested in the work of this important American artist. To see the collection, call the Director of the Center for Social Justice at (951) 222-8846. Additional material on the artist can be found at the Japanese American National Museum, the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution and University of California at Riverside.

Oakland Museum of California presents a major exhibition on historic and contemporary pacific cultures and peoples and their interactions with California. “Pacific Worlds”  remains on view through Jan. 3rd, 2016. The show explores the on-going connections and intersecting experiences of Pacific Islanders and Native Hawaiians, along with Filipinos, Native Californians, and American collectors and colonists.  Opening Dec. 12 and remaining on view until Jan. 3, 2016 is “UNEARTHED: Found & Made”. This show juxtaposes contemporary sculpture by L.A.-based artist Jededian Caesar with traditional Japanese suiseki from Bay Area clubs.1000 Oak St. in Oakland, CA. For details, go to or

“Ishiuchi Miyako: Post War Shadows” is a retrospective of  this self-taught photographer who emerged out of the shadows of WW II in a mostly male generation of  Japanese photographers.  Her work offered a different perspective on the Japan she knew, the hometown port city of Yokosuka. Later work would fuse both the personal and political as she did work on Hiroshima/Nagasaki, Frida Kahlo’s clothing and the map of the skin found on different torsos. On view until Feb. 21,  2016. “The Younger Generation: Contemporary Japanese Photography” is a complimentary group show of  young women photographers that have surfaced in the 1990’s influenced by Ishiuchi’s work. They include Kawauchi Rinko, Onodera Yuki, Otsuka Chino, Sawada Tomoko and Shiga Lieko. This show has identical exhibition dates as Ishiuchi’s show. J. Paul Getty Museum. 1200 Getty Center Dr. (310) 440-7330.

“Asian Art at 100: A History in Photographs” is a survey of the Met’s Asian galleries photographed from 1907 – 19 45. Through May 22, 2016. “Celebrating The Arts of Japan: The Mary Griggs Burke Collection”. Over 300 items from what many consider the best Japanese art collection outside of Japan are on view through July 31, 2016. 1000 – 5th Ave. (212) 535-7710 or go to

The Museum of Fine Arts in Houston organized the traveling show entitled “For A New World To Come: Experiments In Japanese Art And Photographs, 1968-1979”. Vietnam War protests and opposition to a treaty extending American military occupation rocked Japan and fueled the Japanese arts movement at this time. For the first time, many artists and movements heretofore unknown to the West are exposed. This stimulating exhibition comes to New York split into two different venues. The first segment shows at New York University’s Grey Art Gallery through Dec. 5, 2015.  Go to for details. The other portion of the show hits Japan Society Gallery from Oct. 9, 2015 through Jan. 3, 2016. Go to for more information.

“Japanese  Kogei/ Future Forward”. Twelve different artists show different changing approaches to Japanese “handcrafts” – especially in the area of ceramics. Oct. 20 – Feb. 7, 2016. Museum of Arts and Design in New York.  2 Columbus Circle. (212) 299-7777  or [email protected].

Seattle artist Etsuko Ichikawa is in a group show entitled “HAIKU – Poetry in Art” at the Michael Warren Gallery through Nov. 19, 2015. At Republic Plaza at 370 – 17th St. in Denver, CO.

Some upcoming shows at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston include the following –  “Crafted Objects in Flux” is a group show that look at artists who “simultaneously blur and expand craft’s landscape.” Seattle artist Etsuko Ichikawa is included in this show and she has plans to do a live performance sometime during the run of the show. On view through  January 10th, 2016. “Made in the Americas: The New World Discovers Asia” is a new exhibition that proves that the Asian influence on the West is not a recent phenomenon.  It examines these influences across continents as early as the late 16th/ early 17th century. On view  through Feb. 15,  2016. 465 Huntington Ave. in Boston. (617) 267-9300.

“Reopening Of The Renwick Gallery”. The first building in the nation designed specifically as an art museum officially reopens after a two  year renovation with “Wonder” in which nine contemporary artists were invited to create room-size installations inspired by the building itself. Maya Lin is one of them. Opens Nov. 13 and remains on view until July 10, 2016. The Smithsonian American Art Museum and the Renwick Gallery are along the museum mall in Washington, D.C.

On view through Jan. 3, 2016 is “Philippine Gold:  Treasures of Forgotten Kingdoms”. It showcases recently excavated objects that highlight the prosperity and achievements of the little-known Philippine Kingdoms that flourished long before the Spanish discovered the region and colonized it. They affirm the unprecedented creativity, prosperity, and sophisticated metalworking tradition of the pre-colonial period. They also attest to flourishing cultural connections and maritime trade in Southeast Asia during what was an early Asian economic boom.  Also showing at the same time is “Video Spotlight: Philippines”, an exhibition of contemporary video art by Poklong Anading, Martha Atienza, and Mark Salvatus.  Coming in 2016 is “Kamakura: Realism And Spirituality In The Sculpture Of Japan” More than 40 sculptures which show the relationship between realism and sacred use of the objects. The Kamakura era is often regarded as a period similar to the Renaissance in Europe. Feb. 9 through May 8, 2016. Asia Society Museum at 725 Park Ave. in New York City. Go to for details.

In March of 2016, the Metropolitan Museum of Art will take over the building designed by Marcel Breuer that was once the Whitney Museum. A retrospective of the Indian modernist painter Nasreen Mohamedi (1937-1990) will be one of three opening exhibits in this building. The Met’s current artist-in-residence, jazz composter/pianist Vjay Iyer will do a number of appearances as well. The building will now be known as the Met Breuer. Madison Ave. and 75th St. in New York or go to for details.

The first U.S. survey of the work of Chinese contemporary artist Zhang Hongtu comes to the Queens Museum of art. The artist left China in 1982 and settled in Queens. Through Feb. 28, 2016. Email [email protected] for details.

“Sotatsu – Making Waves” is a major show of that  Edo-period, 17th century Japanese  screen painter taking place at the Smithsonian’s Sackler Gallery this fall from Oct. 24th – Jan. 31st, 2016. Over 70 pieces of work from American, European and Japanese collections including work by later artists influenced by Sotatsu. 1050 Independence Ave. SW in  Washington DC. (202) 633-1000.

“Designing Traditions Biennial IV – Explorations in the Asian Textile Collection” is an exhibition that shows how traditional Asian craftsmanship inspires contemporary creativity. Through Jan. 3. 2016 at the  Rhode Island School of Design Museum. 20 N. Main St. in Providence, R.I. Go to for details.

“Japanese Tattoo: Perseverance, Art and Tradition” is a groundbreaking photographic exhibition that explores the master craftsmanship of traditional Japanese tattoos and their enduring influence on modern tattoo practices. On view until Nov. 29, 2015  at Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.  A traveling exhibition on loan from Japanese American National Museum  in Los Angeles. 200 N. Boulevard  in Richmond, VA. (804) 340-1400.

“Martin Wong: Human Instamatic” covers the full trajectory of this Chinese American painter from his Bay Area roots to his pivotal role in documenting the multicultural environs of the Lower East Side of New York. On view through Feb. 12, 2016.  “Transitions: New Photography From Bangladesh” is on view Oct. 15 – Feb.. 14, 2016. Bronx Museum of the Arts in Bronx, New York.  1040   Grand Concourse. (718) 681-6000. The West Coast site for the traveling exhibition  of Martin Wong will be Sept. – Dec. 2017 at the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive in their new location on Center St.

Although the late Japanese artist Onichi Koshiro never traveled West, his work bore innovations from European modernism that surface in his mastery of the traditional Japanese art tradition. The National Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo gives him the first retrospective of his work in twenty years and includes oil paintings, photographs, drawings, printmaking and book design. Jan. 13 – Feb. 28, 2016.

Korean modern sculptor/installation artist  Do Ho Suh (his work is in Seattle Art Museum’s permanent collection) has a show of his translucent “fabric buildings” at the Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati, Ohio. Feb. 12 – Sept. 11, 2016.

Painter Barbara Takenaga is known for her labor-intensive, energetic abstractions composed of matrix-like, swirling patterns of dots but nothing tops the unprecedented scale of a 100’ wall mural she has done for “Nebraska”, a large scale commission from her series “Nebraska Paintings”. The piece captures the open spaces and big sky of her native state. The artist says the moody palette conveys “the ‘violet hour” of  in-between time, when the land and sky start to blur.” Korean artist Ran Hwang uses thousands and thousands of buttons and pins to install “Untethered”, a 140 foot-long sculpture of 14 birds, including six phoenixes. The artist says “I choose buttons because, like human beings, they are at once common and ordinary yet as unique as the rarest jewels. Each button can move freely between the head of the pin and the wall, suggesting the human desire to be free from any restriction.” Both shows are currently on view at MASS Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams, Massachusetts. Go to for details.

The Dennos Museum Center at Northwestern Michigan College is a regional museum in a small college town that always manages to have fascinating shows no doubt to the sage skills of their curatorial staff. On view now through November is “Liu Bolin – Hiding in Plain Sight” . This contemporary Chinese artist is know for painting his body to camouflage into backgrounds whether they be graffiti-heavy walls of New York or China’s Yellow River.  This former sculptor from Beijing was a child of the Cultural Revolution and began his disappearing act around 10 years ago as a silent protest against the government’s crack down on growing social issues and their need to suppress criticism of its actions. Since then the artist has taken on world issues such as pollution and deforestation. He is quoted in a CNN interview that “I always use my works to question and rethink the inequality and imbalance caused by the process of human development.” 1701 East Front St.  in Traverse City, Michigan. Go to for details.

Wendy Maruyama’s “wildlife Project” is now on view through Jan. 3, 2016 at the Houston Center For Contemporary Craft.  The show illustrates the plight of the elephant and the illegal ivory trade. The artist has traveled to Africa and studied the problem, meeting with officials. Her new constructions come from her thoughts on this issue of world crisis. She gives a talk at the museum on Nov. 21 at 2pm. 4848 Main St. (713) 529-4848 or go to Expect to see this show hit the West Coast in 2017 from Feb. – May at the San Francisco Museum of Craft And Design.

“Harajuku – Tokyo Street Fashion” looks at Harajuku’s current trends and wide influence around the world. Opens Nov. 19 and remains on view through April 3, 2016. Honolulu Museum of Art at 900 Beretania St. Go to for details.

The November/December issue of ArtAsia Pacific looks at the work of Li Shan, a member of China’s legendary No Name Painting Society and  three leading female artists from Bangladesh. Also profiled is Tibetan artist Tsherin Sherpa and Eugen Tan, founding director of National Gallery Singapore. Go to [email protected] for details.

The Smithsonian Institution’s National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. will honor architect/artist Maya Lin for her achievements in the arts at the inaugural American Portrait Gala in November. She has completed her largest commission to date, a campus in Cambridge, Mass., for the pharmaceutical company, Novartis. It opens in December.  Its exterior looks like a modern version of a New England stonewall. A new room installation entitled “Folding the Chesapeake” opens at the Renwick Gallery in Washington, D.C. A new  book on her art and architecture has just been published by Skira/Rizzoli. Two ongoing projects dealing with the environment that she’s working on are “What is Missing?”, a multisite, multimedia work that focuses on a crisis of biodiversity and “Confluence” which are six outdoor installations that enable viewers to see wildlife from a different perspective.

“NOT Untitled” by Chang-Jin Lee is a project based on the artist’s interviews with “comfort women” survivors from Korea, China, Taiwan, Indonesia, the Philippines, the Netherlands and a former Japanese WWII soldier. It brings to light the memories of 200,000 young women who were systematically exploited as sex slaves in Asia during WWII by the Imperial Japanese Army. On view  until Dec.  13 at Buk Seoul  Museum of Art. Free. 02-2124-8800.

Noted Thai filmmaker Apichatpong Weerasethakul (“Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives”) has over the past dozen years has had a parallel career with his video installations  which intersect with his thematic material in his films. A new installation work entitles “Fireworks (Archives)” was originally commissioned by Kurimanzutto Gallery in Mexico City was recently part of “Wavelengths”, the experimental program at the Toronto International Film Festival. The viewer is led through a surreal sculpture garden lit by flashes. A sonic soundtrack of  crackles, explosions and the sound of gunfire fill the air. The installation has connections with his new film “Cemetery of Splendor” which had its debut at Toronto as well. Both mirror his obsession with and exploration of Thailand’s Northeast, a marginalized area that provided a home to communist and rebel insurgents and the scene of some of the country’s most violent military battles and occupation.

The Chinese artist Ai Wei Wei reports that Danish toymaker Lego has refused his studio’s request for a bulk order of plastic toys on political grounds. The company says it “cannot approve the use of Legos for political works.” The work was for an exhibition planned with the work of Andy Warhol in Australia. An earlier work entitled “Trace” that was shown on Alcatraz Island had pixelated images of more than 175 prisoners of conscience. Coincidentally the company has expanded its presence in China, investing ina new manufacturing facility in Jiaxing. Upon the artist’s announcement of his refusal by Lego however, dozens of his fans offered their legos for his use online.

Pioneer female Korean painter Chu Kyung-ja, most known for her paintings of female figures and flowers died in New York City recently from a chronic illness. She was 99.

Japanese artist Ysuo Sumi died in October. He was 90 years old. He became a member of Japanese Avant Garde art group Gutai in 1955. Founded by Jiro Yoshihara, this group was active until the early 1970s and were known for their artwork that rejected traditional art forms and for their large-scale multimedia installations, performances and happenings. Sumi’s work included paintings created with the use of umbrellas, combs and the abacus instead of the traditional brush.  The Itami City Museum of Art recently gave him a major restrospective entitled “Enchanting Mess: Sumi Yasuo in the 1950’s”.

The Whitney Museum of American Art announced that it has appointed two of their own curators to curate the 2017 Whitney Biennial. Previous editions of the biennial have been met with controversy and criticism. Christopher Y. Lew is an assistant curator at the Whitney. Mia Locks will join Lew in selecting artists. This marks one of the first times that both curators are Asian American.

Part 5 of “The Treasures of Kansong: Preserving National Identity Through Culture” displays HwaHoeYoungMo, Korea’s unique genre of plant and animal paintings. In ancient times, this genre was as popular as landscape and portrait paintings. On view through March  27, 2016. Dongdaemiun Design Plaza in Seoul. Located near Dongdaemiun Culture Park Station at Exit 1.

Performing Arts

All-female Maori quartet Whiri Tu Aka from New Zealand performs on Friday, Nov. 20  at 8pm as part of Brian Faker’s Global Rhythms series . The group brings Maori culture and outstanding a cappella vocals to the Great Hall of Town Hall Seattle. For tickets and information, go to

The world premiere of “Peace Symphony” by Paul D. Miller aka DJ Spooky takes place on December 4 at 8pm. The work was inspired by his interactions with the last remaining survivors (Hibakusha) of the nuclear bomb attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Miller sampled the words and stories of the Hibakusha to create electronic and  acoustic musical  portraits, along with film footage, that tells the tale of one of the most powerful tragedies of the 20th century. For more information about this project, go to  The link for general information and tickets is  Another link is

The Steve Griggs Ensemble plays “Music Made from Japanese American Memories of WW II” at the Panama Hotel Tea Room at 2pm every Saturday in 2015. Free. 605  South Main St. Sponsored  by 4Culture, National Park Service, and Earshot Jazz. 

“Storywallahs: An Evening of Storytelling” is an event held in partnership with KUOW, Pratidhwani, and Tasveer. Organizers are looking for performers who can tell a five-minute story about living in both South Asia and the U.S. for an audience. Sign up to tell yours or just come and listen to storytellers from the Indian and South Asian communities. Set for Sun., Nov. 22 at 6:30pm. Go to for details or call (206) 442-8480.

Singer/songwriter Tomo Nakayama (see related article in this issue) performs at the Triple Door with fellow local singer/songwriters Betsey Olsen and Emi Meyer. Sun., Nov. 22 at 7:30pm. Doors open at 6pm. 216 Union St. (206) 838-4333 or try  Meyer’s latest release “Monochrome” debuted at #1 in Japan in Sept. It comes out in the spring of 2016 on the Seattle-based jazz label, Origin Records.

ON The Boards has another exciting season of performance art in all genres. Of particular interest is Degenerate Art Ensemble’s (led by Crow Nishimura and Joshua Kohl) “Predator Songstress” which has been created in stages and zeroes in on the theme of totalitarianism, surveillance, and control filtered through a modern day surreal fairy tale dusted with butoh and anime crumbs. With all productions, the ensembles strength is in numbers with a crack team of lighting designers, video artists costume designers and musicians. Premieres at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco on Nov. 5 before opening here in Seattle, Dec.  3 – 6, 2015. In related news, the Nov. 2015 issue of City Arts magazine puts Crow Nishimura of the Degenerate Art Ensemble on the cover with a story entitled “Rebel Royalty”.  Tanya Tagaq is an amazing Inuit throat singer who digs into past, present and future with a flexible, powerful voice that will have you on your feet as she blends native tradition with electronica, industrial and metal influences to tear apart the walls of the silent movie, “Nanook of the North” projected behind her as she sings. One night only on April 6, 2016. 100 Roy St. (206) 217-9888.

Here’s a sneak peek at some of the programs Seattle Symphony has to offer under the baton of Music Director Ludovic Morlot later this year going into 2016. Want comedy  with your music? The duo of Ingudesman & Joo return to Seattle after their success in 2012 at Benaroya with an all new show that mixes laughs with classical music and popular culture on March 3rd at 7:30pm.If you want a preview of the music the Symphony will be playing on their upcoming tour of Asia, check out the Ravel Piano Concerto as performed with Jean-Yves Thibaudet on piano along with music by Faure and Dvorak on June 5th.

The Japanese American Citizens League Seattle Chapter will present a workshop entitled “begelsut” which will honor the history, culture and legacy of the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe with other local API community organizations at Asian Counseling & Referral Services. Sat., Nov. 21 starting at 10am. RSVP required. Email Toshiko Hasegawa at [email protected]. 3639 Martin Luther King Way. S.

Seattle Opera has announced their 2015/16 season under new General Director Aidan Lang. Director Lang returns to stage directing Mozart’s “The Marriage of Figaro”. Chinese-born bass-baritone Shenyang makes his Seattle Opera debut as Figaro. Jan. 16 – 30. McCaw Hall at Seattle Center at 321 Mercer St. (206) 389-7676 or try 1-800-426-1619 or go to [email protected].

“Extraordinary Ordinary People – American Masters of Traditional Arts” is an exhibition with monthly artist performances & humanities programs on Fridays from 7:30 – 9:30pm on Oct. 30th, Nov. 13th and Nov. 20th. Traditional artist demonstrations on  Saturdays from 11am – 4pm on Oct. 3rd, Oct. 31st and Nov. 14th. The exhibit is up through Nov. 30th. Admission, opening on Fri. Sept. 11th at 7pm and demonstrations are free. Suggested  $10  donation for all performances. A cross-cultural mix of music and culture from cancion music from Latin America, Croatian Americans, Finnish music, Hindustani classical music, Cowboy and Native American and Scandinavian music. Jack Straw Cultural Center at 4261 Roosevelt Way NE in Seattle’s University District. (206) 634-0919 or go to for details.

Ayame Kai’s annual fundraising event for Nikkei Concerns will feature artists, crafts and food booths at Blaine Memorial United Methodist Church. Sat., Nov. 21 from 10am – 3pm. 3001 24th Ave. South.

Stella Stephanie Kosim gives a classical guitar recital on Sun., Nov. 22 at 7:30pm. UW School of Music’s Brechemin Auditorium on the Seattle campus. (206) 543-1201.

Tea ceremony demonstrations continue at Seattle Art Museum downtown every Third Thursday at 5:30pm and every Third Sunday at 2:10pm. Free with admission.

The UW World Series season for 2015/2016 has some extraordinary performances booked from around the world at their UW  Seattle Meany Hall location. The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center consisting of CMS Co-Artistic Director and Pianist Wu Han and violinists Sean lee and Benjamin Bellman take solo turns in music by Mozart, Schubert and Mendelssohn. One night only on March 19th, 2016 at  7:30pm. The Daedalus Quartet plays Friday, April 29th, 2016 at 7:30pm with work by Beethoven and the world premiere of a new work by UW Music composer Huck Hodge. In the “Special Events” category, the Peking Acrobats and sitarist   Anoushka Shankar make appearances. Peking Acrobats come to perform their daring balance maneuvers with live musicians playing traditional Chinese instruments on Sat., Jan. 23, 2016 at 3pm and 7:30pm. Anoushka Shankar, the daughter of the late virtuoso sitar master, Ravi Shankar brings her own genre-defying mix to the instrument with Indian music, electronica, jazz, flamenco and Western classical music all playing a part. She performs on Sat., April 9th, 2016 at 8pm. A “Special Engagement” will feature “An Evening with Yo-Yo Ma” on Tues., Dec. 8, 2015 at 7:30pm. This world – renowned cellist has recorded classical music and has never been afraid to collaborate with musicians from various genres from all over the world. This appearance is a rare opportunity to hear him in an intimate space. (206) 543-4880 or go to or get tickets in-Person at 1313 NE 4lst St. Ticket

The 2015-16 Saturday Family Concerts at Town Hall Seattle are set. Traditional Japanese arts with Kabuki Academy are set for Nov. 14th. Other acts include Caspar Baby Pants, Pointed Man Band, Swil Kanim Pig Snout!!, Gustafer Yellowgold, Franchesska Berry and Frances England. Town Hall Seattle is at 1119 8th Ave. (206) 625-4255 or go to

Musicians Eyvind Kang and Jessika Kenney perform “Viscous Circle” on Thurs., Dec. 3 at 8pm. Part of the Frye Art Museum’s “Big Genius Show” which celebrates the talents of Seattle’s arts community. One of many continuing activities that complement the show  which remains on view through Jan. 10. 704 Terry Ave. (206) 622-9250.

ARC Dance which includes their school of ballet and  Arc Youth Dance Company are getting ready for their annual production of “Nutcracker Sweets”. There will be five performances in the ARC Dance Studio in North Ballard Dec. 11 – 13 and two performances at the Shorewood Performing Arts Center on Dec. 19. For details, call (206) 948-6506.

Trumpet player/composer and UW Jazz Professor Cuong Vu remains active locally performing in various concerts on the Seattle UW campus. He will be part of the Bill Frisell and Michael Gibbs concert with the UW Symphony and Jazz Studies Faculty on Jan. 14 & 15 at Meany Theater 7:30pm. He also joins UW faculty member Melia Watras in a concert of “Schumann Resonances”  along with Winston Choi on piano, Matthew Kocmieroski on percussion and Michael Jinsoo Lim on violin on Jan. 26 at Meany Theater at 7:30pm. New works by Richard Karpen, Vu and Watras will also receive their world premieres. (206) 543-4880 for tickets.

Pacific Northwest Ballet Concertmaster Michael Jinsoo Lim participates in a UW Faculty Chamber Music Concert on March 6 at 7:30pm at Meany Theater on the Seattle UW campus. (206) 543-4880 for tickets.

As part of Seattle Rep’s 2015/2016 new season, Pulitzer Prize winning playwright Ayad Akhtar’s “Disgraced” will be performed Jan. 8th – 31st.  The story is about a Pakistani-born successful New York lawyer whose life is turned upside-down when his Muslim heritage is questioned. 155 Mercer St. (206) 443-2222 for tickets.

“The Frye Art Museum Guitar Series” presents Connie Sheu on Sat., April 16, 2016. Sheu teaches at Pasadena Conservatory of Music. She specializes in performing original music for guitar by female composers.

“Caught”, a play by Christopher Chen gets a production by Seattle Public Theater as part of their 2015-16 Mainstage Season. It runs May 20th – June 12th, 2016 with a preview on May 19th. The play is a mind-bending satire about truth, art, and deception. When an art gallery hosts a retrospective of the work of a legendary Chinese dissident artist, the artist himself appears and shares with patrons the details of his ordeal that explores truth, art, social justice and cultural appropriation.7312 W. Green Lake Drive N. Go to for details.

“Ethnomusicology Visiting Artists Concert: Ade Suparman; Sudanese Music of Indonesia” takes place on June 2, 2016 at 7:30pm at Meany Hall on the Seattle UW campus. Go to or call Arts UW Ticket Office at (206) 543-4880.

“Monstress” is a theatrical adaptation based on a book of short stories by Lysley Tenorio created by Philip Kan Gotanda and Sean San Jose as Directed by Carey Perloff at A.C.T’s Strand Theaer in San Francisco through Nov. 22. 1127 Market St. (415) 749-2228 or [email protected].

Lam Chun-wing, a 19 year old from a working class Hong Kong suburb becomes the first Chinese dancer to join the Paris Opera Ballet in its 346 year history.

Film & Media

Sundance Cinemas in the University District presents the following. Opening at Sundance and Ark Lodge Cinema in Columbia City on Nov. 13 is Anthony Lucero’s “East Side Sushi”  about a working class Latina single mother who takes a job washing dishes in a Japanese restaurant only to discover a love for making sushi. Her trials and tribulations in a male-dominated industry to carve out a career as a sushi chef form the core of the film.  The director will be at screenings at both theaters. Sundance is at 4500 9th Ave. N.E. and their # is (206) 633-0059. Ark Lodge Cinemas is at 4816 Rainier Ave. S. and their # is (206) 721-3156.

Opening Nov. 6 at Pacific Place is “The Nightingale”. It tells the story of an elderly Beijing man who takes his granddaughter on a nostalgic trip back to their hometown in the countryside. It’s a French-Chinese co-production directed by Philippe Muyvers and was selected by China as its candidate for best foreign language film in the 2015 Oscars. AMC Pacific Place is at 600 Pine St. #400 in downtown Seattle. (206)652-8908.

“Ghost in the Shell: The New Movie” directed by Kazuya Nomura is set for release on Nov. 10 at the Guild 45th. This is supposedly an update of the classic original for the new generation.  2115  N. 45th  in Wallingford.

Nov. 20 – 25 brings “Moana” with sound. After Robert Flaherty filmed “Nanook of the North” in 1922, he journeyed to the South Seas Island of Sava’l to film Samoan lifestyles in situ. Fifty years later, Flahery’s daughter returned to Samoa with Ricky Leacock and recorded location sound, dialogue and folk songs to compliment the images of her father’s silent film. At the Grand  Illusion Cinema.  1403  N.E. 50th in the University district. (206) 523-3935.  

Northwest Film Forum presents the following. The Seattle premiere of “Taxi” by Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi runs Nov. 13 – 19. This project was done while living under a filmmaking ban. He stars in as well as directs this taxi ride around Tehran. 1515 12th Ave. (206) 329-2629.

Opening Nov. 5th at SIFF Egyptian is Hou Hsiao-Hsien’s “The Assassin” which is the official entry by Taiwan in the “Best Foreign Language Film” category for the Academy Awards 2016. Those expecting a martial arts film with lots of fight scenes will be disappointed as this beautiful film focuses instead on the search for the human soul and the landscapes one travels through both physical and psychological to find peace, humanity and reconciliation. 801 E. Pine. (206) 324-9996.

“Silver Screen Buddhas” is the title of a contemporary Korean film series introduced by Sharon Suh that portrays elements of Buddhism, gender and Korean society. Ki-duk Kim’s “Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter…and Spring” screens on Sun., Jan. 24 at 3pm. Im Kwon-taek’s “Come, Come Upward” screens on Thurs., Jan. 28 at 7pm. Shown as part of the program activities to complement the exhibit, “Place of Paradox: Contemporary Korean Art” on view through March 13, 2016. Seattle Asian Art Museum on Volunteer Park on upper Capitol Hill. (206) 442-8480.

Opening in Sept.  are the following films – “Katti Batti”, a romance between a serious young architect and a free spirit directed by Nikhil Advani. “The Office” is a romantic musical comedy from China directed by Johnnie To and starring Chun Yun-fat now at AMC Pacific Place.  Soon-Mi Yoo, a South Korean director living in the U.S. made the documentary film, “Songs From The North” in which she tries to understand North Korea, the place, the people and the propaganda. “Veteran” is a new South Korean film directed by Ryoo Seung-wan about a kind-heated detective who butts heads with the CEO of a giant corporation. Shen Xu directs and stars in the comedy entitled “Lost In Hong Kong”. Ramin Bahrani directs “99 Homes” which stars Andrew Garfield as a single dad evicted from his Florida home forced to make some tough decisions. Also now playing  at AMC Pacific Place is “Saving Mr. Wu” which is based on the true story of  the kidnapping of a movie star by a gang led by a crafty sociopath. Stars Andy Lau, Wu Ruofu (who was the actor in real life who was kidnapped) and Zhang Huo. Directed by Deng Sheng with gritty cinematography shot mostly at night. In Oct. look for the following – “Yakuza Apocalypse” is a wacky action horror comedy thriller by Takashi Miike who just loves mashing up genres (coming to Seattle Sundance Theaters). Taiwanese master filmmaker Hou Hsiao-Hsien’s new film entitled “The Assassin” is set in ninth-century imperial China where a little girl is kidnapped and trained to be a professional killer. What does she do when her target turns out to be her childhood  fiancé.  Hou won the best direction prize at Cannes this year for this film. Opens Nov. at the Egyptian. “A Fool” by Chen Jianbin looks at what happens when a Chinese shepherd makes the mistake of trying to bribe an official to get his son out of prison. “Tokyo Tribe” is a new action thriller by Sion Sono in which a future Japan is run by gangs and the battle for Tokyo looms ahead. Finally in Nov. comes Tham Nguyen Thi’s documentary about a former female monk who must escort a group of traveling Vietnamese transgender performers.

Other new films with dates not yet set for release but probably due by 2016 are the following – Jia Zhangke of all of China’s directors seems to have his pulse on a China evolving so quickly that its own people can barely keep up. “Mountains May Depart” is a dark portrait of a capitalist-era family through the decades as they struggle to survive in China and abroad. Gus Van Sant’s “The Sea of Trees” opened at Cannes and was picked up by Roadside/Lionsgate for distribution. The film stars Matthew McConaughey  and Ken Watanabe who meet on Mr. Fuji bent on suicide. Japanese director Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s newest entitled “Journey to the Shore” has a piano teacher going on a second honeymoon with her missing husband who returns as a ghost. Adapted from the novel by Kazumi Yumoto Stars Eri Fukatsu and Tadanobu Asano. Due out next year is the long-awaited  new project by Martin Scorsese in which he adapts  Shusaku Endo’s historical novel on Christians in Japan in a period when Christianity was not allowed. A priest played by Andrew Garfield travels to Japan to confront rumors that his mentor has abandoned the church. Shot on location in Taiwan. The director remarked that “The subject matter presented by Endo was in my life since I was very, very young.” Kazuhiro Soda’s 21/2 hour documentary entitled “Oyster Factory” was a Locarno Film Festival Official Selection and takes a close look as globalization comes to a small Japanese village whose sole industry is the harvesting of oysters.

Although there are a number of Asian American animators working for Pixar studios, “Sanjay’s Superhero”, a new short by Sanjay Patel qualifies as the first film by an Asian American from Pixar. Patel says he grew up hating his parent’s Hindi culture and just wanted to fit in. While his father sat in the living room in meditation to his God, the son sat enthralled by his Gods, the TV cartoon superheroes of his youth. The film is an appreciation of his parent’s culture and his own identity. It will slow alongside the Pixar feature length film “The Good Dinosaur” later this year.

Local filmmaker and film historian Sudeshna Sen offers a film appreciation class entitled “How To Build A Filmmaker – Satyajit Ray” in two sessions at Northwest Film Forum set for Nov. 16 & Nov. 23. Participants will learn of the director’s many diverse talents and have a chance to screen and discuss the director’s early, mid-career and later works, including films of his not generally available for viewing by the general public. 1515 – 12th Ave. (206) 329-2629.

“The Killing Fields of Dr. Haing S. Ngor” returns to San Francisco remixed with a newly added song from Cambodian American performer Bochan. The award-winning film screens as the Centerpiece  Presentation of the inaugural International Southeast Asian Film Festival. Join director Arthur Dong for a post-screening and reception. Nov. 21 at 8pm. New People Cinema at 1746 Post St. in San Francisco’s Japantown.

The Written Arts/Talks

On Thurs., Nov. 19 at 4:30pm in Room C5, Seattle University School of Law will present a booksigning by Professor Lorraine Bannai’s new book entitled “Enduring Conviction: Fred Korematsu and His Quest for Justice” (UW Press). Present will be Judge Marilyn Hall Patel who issued the historic decision to vacate Korematsiu’s WWII conviction for resisting orders that culminated in the incarceration of 110,000 persons of Japanese ancestry. Besides the author and Judge Patel, sharing remarks will be Korematsu’s daughter, Karen Korematsu. For detail, email Lauire Wells at [email protected].

Monroe author Julie Loan Ky Alexander talks about “A Rose on the Steel Ground” (Tate Publishing), a memoir about her escape from Vietnam and the struggle for re-settlement in America and does a book signing on Sun. Nov. 19 at 6:30pm. At Snohomish Historical Society located at 118 “B” Ave. in Snohomish.

Seattle University Professor/historian/author Dr. Marie R. Wong is the featured speaker at JCCCW’s monthly program. Sat., Nov. 21 at 1pm. Free. 1414 S. Weller.

Journalist  Deepa Iyer talks about the new war on South Asians in the U.S. in the wake of 9/11 in “We Too Sing America” (New Press) on Dec. 1 at Town Hall Seattle. Elliott Bay Book Company is on Capitol Hill at 1521 – 10th Avenue. (206) 624-6000.

Seattle Arts & Lectures presents poet Srikanth Reddy in their on-going poetry series. He will give a talk entitled “Like a Very Strange Likeness and Pink” where he will examine the question of likeness in Emily Dickinson’s similes and Gertrude Stein’s portraits as a way of thinking about social identity and difference in modern American poetry.  Tues., Dec. 1 at pm. 7:30pm. McCaw Hall at Seattle Center. Co-presented with Bagley Wright Lecture Series on Poetry. Go to [email protected] for details.

Mia Tuan, recently appointed dean of UW’s College of Education gives a talk entitled “Together Undaunted” on Wed., Dec. 2 at 6:30pm. Northwest African American Museum at 2300 S. Massachusetts St. in Seattle.

“Write-O-Rama” is an opportunity to sample several writing workshops offered by Hugo House all in one day. $45 gets you five 50 minute classes at a fraction of the real cost while the loc income/student rate is just $25. Craft a found poem, improve your fiction, write a nonfiction essay or participate in other tutorials offered. Besides sampling Hugo house classes and teachers, you can also try out genres and topics outside of your purview without the pressure of registering for a full class. Register now for this grand writing event that takes place on Sat., Dec. 6 12 – 6pm. 1634 11th Ave. just off Broadway on Capitol Hill. Go to Strangertickets to register. Hugo House is at (206) 322-7030 or go to

UW English Professor Shawn Wong participates in the Red Badge Project. Launched  in 2011 by actor Tom Skerritt, the organization offers creative arts classes to U.S. veterans, both male and female. Wong will talk about the project around the state.  He will be at Redmond Senior Center on Nov. 24 at 1pm, the Richland Library on Dec. 17 at 7pm and the Harstine Island Community Center on Jan. 24, 2016 with time tba. For more information about the project, go to

Acclaimed Washington writer Alex Kuo and retired Professor of English at Washington State University has been busy. Recent books include “My Private China” (Blacksmith), a collection of sketches of contemporary China on issues the Chinese find important and “Shanghai, Shanghai, Shanghai” (Red Bat Books), a new novel about a culture writer/closet novelist and his encounters with a myriad of characters that populate Chinese society including a Bogota pickpocket, a defiant Uighur woman with a borrowed baby, a German navel attaché, American evangelicals working the Beijing Olympics, and China’s first female conductor of western classical music. He will be reading from these books during his Northwest tour. Venues/dates are as follows –Whitworth University, Spokane on Nov. 18 at 7pm, Pendleton Center for the Arts on Nov. 19 at 7pm, Looking Glass Books in La Grande on Nov. 20 at 6pm, Nov. 22 at 3pm at University Book Store in Seattle on the Ave., Nov. 30 at Watermark Book Co. in Anacortes at 2:30pm and Anacortes Public Library at 7pm and Dec. 2 at 7pm at Village Books in Bellingham. Go to for details.

Author/filmmaker Arthur Dong talks about the new hardcover edition of his book on famed Chinatown nightclub entitled “Forbidden City, USA”. Light refreshments served. Co-presented by Chinese Historical Society of America and Art Deco Society of California. Books available for sale and signing. Nov. 21 at 1pm. At Chinese Historical Society of America Museum at 965 Clay St. in San Francisco Chinatown. Free.

Congratulations to Eastwind Books of Berkeley who received an award for their service to the community by the Oakland Asian Cultural Center. This book store has one of the largest number of titles  in the country specializing in Asian American and Asian Studies.

The rising intolerance for human rights and freedome of expression has polarized the atmosphere around the world.  In India under the Modi administration to the point that noted India writers such as Burbachan Bhullar, Ajmer Singh Aulakh, Atamjit Singh and GN Levy are returning their Sahitya Akademi awards in protest.  The recent protest was sparked by the rise of intolerance in the country as exemplified by the murder of writer MM Kalburgi and the lynching of a Muslim man over rumors that he had eaten beef which later proved to be unfounded. Bangladesh is also in turmoil. Demonstrations continue over fatal attacks on writers and publishers by suspected hardline Islamists. The latest victim was publisher Faisal Arefin Dipan who was hacked to death in his office. Earlier victims have included online activist, writer and blogger Avijit Roy. A militant group believed to be affiliated to al-Qaida claimed responsibility and threatened to murder more writers and publishers who defamed Islam. Demonstrations have continued to protest government inaction over the attacks with books burned and shops closed. Rallies have called for more protection for publishers, bloggers and writers. Many have fled the country or gone into hiding. More than 150 writers including Margaret Atwood, Salman Rushdie, Yann Martel and Colm Toibin have signed a letter condemning the attacks and calling on the government of Bangladesh “to ensure that the tragic events…are not repeated.” In Indonesia, the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival has been forced to call off panels, exhibitions and a screening of the documentary film, “The Look of Silence” all around events marking the 1965 massacre of alleged communists after threats from authorities to revoke the festival organizer’s operating permit. Festival founder and director Janet DeNeefe issued a statement saying “1965 is an event that has and continues to influence many Indonesians and as such, we chose to dedicate a proportion of the program to enriching our understanding about this, through themes of reconciliation and remembrance. We hoped that these panel sessions would enable conversations to take place that continue Indonesia on its journey of healing, particularly for those whose lives were so severely affected.” Taken from reports from The Guradian and Wikipedia.

One finds it hard to keep up with the steady stream of new titles coming out even in the limited categories of works by or about Asian Americans and new titles on Asia but here’s a recent sampling:

“Why Ghosts Appear” (Chin Music Press) is another beautifully designed thriller/mystery novel by  Todd Shimoda with artwork by LJC Shimoda. In this story a fortune teller asks a detective to find her missing son.

“Roads of Oku – Journeys in the Heatland” (Far Roads) by Dennis Kawaharada traces the Hawai’i-based writer’s own personal journey in his ancestral heartland of Japan. Accounts of Hawaiian history and Japanese religion, customs, geography and archaeology  fill the accounts of his travels.

Kyung-Sook Shin’s ”Please Look After Mom” was a New York Times bestseller. Now she’s back with a new novel entitled “The Girl Who Wrote Loneliness” (Pegasus Books). Korea’s industrial sweatshops of the 1970’s catapulted that South Korea into a global economy. Shin tells that story through the eyes of a young girl from the countryside working in the factories under conditions of exploitation, oppression and urbanization.

As more and more citizens flee North Korea, more and more memoirs are published telling their stories. “Stars Between The Sun And Moon – One Woman’s Life OIn North Korea And Escape To Freedom” (Norton) by Lucia Jang and Susan McClelland is the latest.

“Art Place Japan – The Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale and the Vision to Reconnect Art and Nature” (Princeton Architectural Press) by Fram Kitagawa as translated by Amiko Matsuo and Brad Monsma tells the remarkable story of a rural farming region in Niigata that now thrives under an arts festival that combines art, ecology and community participation. Individual artists and cultural organizations from around the world come to the area every three years to transform it into a large-scale art installation. The director of this event and the author of this book will be speaking at Henry Art Gallery on  hursday, Nov. 12 at 7pm as part of a conference on public art in Japan at UW. 15th Ave. NE & NE 41st St. (206) 543-2280.

Few people know of the Indian participation in World War II and Raghu Karnad tells that personal story by uncovering stories of his family who served in “Farthest Field – An Indian Story of the Second World War” (Norton).

“The Hundred Year Flood” (Little A Books) by Matthew Salesses is a  striking debut novel about a lost soul, a Korean adoptee trying to find his place in the world while living abroad in Prague.

“I Am China” (Anchor Books) by Xiaolu Guo tells the story of a Chinese rock musician, his British translator, his poet lover and how he ends up in exile in England seeking political asylum.

“Last Boat To Yokohama – The Legacy of Beate Sirota Gordon” (Three Rooms Press) by Nassrine Azimi & Michel Wasserman tells the amazing tale of a remarkable woman who secretly helped create Japan’s new constitution after WW II, writing an article that mandated equal rights for all women in Japan. This article was the work of a 22-year-old Vienna-born, naturalized American woman of Ukranian-Jewish descent who had grown up in Japan.

“The Investigation”  (Pegasus Books) is a novel by J. M. Lee translated by Chi-Young Kim that tells the story of Japan’s wartime history, inspired by the real-life case of jailed dissident Korean poet Yun Dong-Ju.

“The Incarnations” (Touchstone) is a new novel by Susan Barker that traces the existence of a Beijing cabbie during the summer Olympics who keeps finding letters from a stranger in his cab that takes him on a journey through Chinese history from the Ming dynasty to the Opium War and the Cultural Revolution. Forgotten characters of his country’s history and folklore float before his eyes. Barker had a British father and Chinese Malaysian mother. She lived in Beijing during the country’s preparation for the Olympics.

Adrian Tomine has been telling stories in his comic format since he was a teenager with the ‘zine, “Optic Nerve”. Of late his work has been featured prominently in the New Yorker. His latest book entitled “Killing And Dying” (Drawn & Quarterly) with no great fanfare simply zeroes in on the hole of the American heart and dwells there with incisive, stark portrayals of different Americans just trying to get through their lives day by day. Tender, heartbreaking and real. Catch him live at Portland’s Wordstock Festival on Nov. 6 & 7.

“The Good Immigrants – how the YELLOW PERIL became the MODEL MINORITY” (Princeton) by Madeline Y. Hsu looks at how American political narratives from earliest times to the Cold War changed immigration policy and made Chinese immigrants a ‘model minority’.

Akhil Sharma’s novel  “Family  Life” (Norton) about  an immigrant family torn asunder by duty and  the need for survival made the “10 Best Books” list of 2014 in the New York Times Book Review. Now it has come out in a new paperback edition.

“Keywords For Asian Americans” (NYU) is a collection of essays edited by Cathy J. Schlund-Vials, Linda Trinh Vo, and K. Scott Wong. Looks like a key reference book for Asian American Studies.

“Gasa Gasa Girl Goes To Camp – A Nisei Youth behind a World War II Fence” (Univ. of Utah) by Lily Yuriko Nakai Havey uses a sophisticated collage of artwork, prose and photographs a candid memoir of the camp experience through the eyes of a young girl.

Dao Strom returns with a double format presentation that shows off her writing chops and music in one package. “We Were Meant to be Gentle People” is a poetic memoir that charts a life experienced across oceans and continents in fragments of memory, image and history. The book is combined with a music cd entitled “East/West” with “chapters” in the book corresponding to song titles and lyrics interwoven amid the essays and fragments. The book is available through amazon, Ingram and various independent booksellers. The cd  in  both digital download and CD format via or and iTunes. You can get the dual format of Cd + book via the author’s own website. Go to for details.

“Ocean of Bitter Dreams – The Chinese Migration to America 1850 – 1915” by Robert J. Swendinger has been reprinted on China Books.

“Taken from the Paradise Isle – The Hoshida Family Story” (Colorado) Edited by Heidi Kim with a foreword by Franklin Odo tells the story of artist George Hoshida and his efforts to keep his family intact during desperate times.

Bamboo Ridge Press, the publishing organ of a dedicated group of Island writers in Hawai’i keeps chugging along.  The latest issue of the magazine (#106) is just out ci-edited by Gail Harada and Lisa Linn Kanae. Also due out by December is “Between Sky And Sea”, a new novel by D. Carreira Ching. For details, visit

The University of Washington continues to revamp its Asian American literary classics with new cover art and new introductions by scholars in the field. The latest to get this upgrade is Bienvenido N. Santos’ “Scent of Apples”, a beautifully crafted series of short stories that tell the stories of those early Filipino immigrants who came to this country to build a new life and the hardships they found. With a foreword  by Jessica Hagedorn and a new introduction by Allan Punzalan Isaac.

From “Chutzpah!” hailed as one of China’s most innovative literary magazines comes an anthology entitled “CHUTZPAH! – New Voices From China” (University of Oklahoma Press) edited by Ou Ning and Austin Woerner. Includes sixteen selections that take readers from the suburbs of Nanjing to the mountains of Xinjiang Province, from London’s Chinatown to a universe seemingly springing from a video game.

Rohini Mohan looks at three lives caught up in the aftermath of Sri Lanka’s twenty-year civil war as even today ethnic and religious conflicts continue to run rampant in “The Seasons of Trouble – Life Amid the Ruins of Sri Lanka’s Civil War” (Verso). This debut book stems from the author’s extensive, award-winning career as a political journalist covering Sri Lankan politics and the personal lives of its citizens.

“Chord”(Sarabande) is a new book of poems by Pacific Lutheran University Professor Rick Barot that looks at the limits of representational art and language in a carefully crafted series of poems that show the limits of our human condition and the threads that bind us together.

Luo Ying went through the experience of the Cultural Revolution in China and in “Memories of the Cultural Revolution” (University of Oklahoma Press) as translated by Seattle poet/translator Denis Mair, this memoir in verse brings to light with devastating clarity those defining moments of a young life in turmoil.

In “Lost Canyon” (Akashic) one of Los Angeles’s finest writers Nina Revoyr looks at a cross-section of that multi-layered, multi-cultural urban tapestry as a group of people on the emotional edge are thrown together and forced to deal with solutions in a perilous climb both physically and emotionally challenging.

In Eating Korean In America – Gastronomic Ethnography of Authenticity” (University of Hawai’i Press), Sonia Ryang goes to four American cities to try to answer the question

The history of Asian Americans and their emergence in this country is constantly being re-invented and re-evaluated as more research comes to light. “The Making of Asian America – A History” (Simon & Schuster) by Erika Lee is the latest version to hit the stores. She tracks down immigration patterns and origins back to North and South America as well as the East and West Indies.

“The Lams Of Ludlow Street” (Kehrer) is a new book by photographer Thomas Holton that is an in-depth look at a family living in New York’s Chinatown. Born to a Chinese mother and American father, Holton had close relatives in Chinatown but always felt disconnected. What started out as a documentary project on the streets and daily rituals of that community developed into a much more intimate exploration of a single family’s life spanning a decade.

Ugly Duckling Presse has published the first book of one of Tatsumi Hijikata’s notebook notations in either English or Japanese.  Hijikata (1928-1986) was the founding father of the radical dance from called Butoh. Though influenced by Western artists and writers, he was dedicated to the particular expression of the marginalized and sought to capture the condition of the Japanese psyche/body after World War II. Tatsumi Hijikata’s “Costume en Face: A Primer of Darkness for Young Boys and Girls” is a notebook written down by Moe Yamamoto and translated from the Japanese by Sawako Nakayasu. It gives readers a chance to see for the first time the profound interconnectedness of language and body in the choreographer’s process of composition. Go to for details on this and other titles they publish.

“A Little Life” by Hanya Yanagihara has been shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the National Book Award Longlist for fiction. She will be in Seattle on Nov. 20 in conversation with Dave Wheeler. 4326 University Way N.E. (206) 634-3400 or go to [email protected].

“The Best American Poetry” is a yearly anthology of work juried from  hundreds of poems published in literary magazines by a different judge every year. The 2015 edition was curated by popular Northwest Native American writer/poet Sherman Alexie. Assumptions are it’s going to be a strong collection and what could go wrong. Well, it turns out Alexie didn’t see the curve ball coming his way. After he had made his selection, he would later find that one poem he chose by a poet with a Chinese name was submitted after all by a Caucasian male who surmised he had a better chance being chosen using a ethnic name (turns out it was the name of a girl he went to high school with). Alexie felt duped and wondered what to do. In the end he left the poem in but it opens up a lot of different issues re: ethnic appropriation. To read Alexie’s lengthy response and reasoning on why he did what he did, goggle “Sherman Alexie Speaks Out On The Best American Poetry”.

The Asian American Writers Workshop has a response with an anthology of Asian  American writers entitled “After Yi-Fen Chou” in which which writers write in response to the “Best American Poetry 2015” controversy. Go to

Seattle artist Etsuko Ichikawa is featured in the exhibit catalogue entitled “Crafted: Objects In Flux”, an exhibition currently on view at Museum of Fine Arts Boston and the catalogue is available for purchase through the museum gift shop. A lengthy interview with the artist by Marika Yoshikawa has appeared in the first volume of “Collect & Connect” published by Arts & Books in Tokyo. The interview covers how Ichikawa transplanted from Tokyo to Seattle, how she started working with the medium of glass and her opinions of the art scene in Seattle and Tokyo. Available only in Japanese. The artist has also recently been profiled in Asian Avenue Magazine.

Every writer needs to flex his or her muscles with writing exercise or a refresher course to get the word block loosened. Consider Hugo House’s creative writing classes. A Fall 2015 catalog is available now. Some possibilities from a myriad of choices – “Nonfiction – Why Should I read You? With EJ Koh Nov. 7 – Dec. 19 helps you generate new work and revisit previous work. Poet Jane Wong helps you tackle “The Poetry of Memoir” Nov. 14 & Nov. 15. How can you utilize poetic techniques to create tension and emotion when telling your narratives? This workshop may offer some answers. Poet Michelle Penaloza offers “Poetry Calisthenics” Oct. 28 – Dec. 9. Each week focuses on a different element of the poetic craft. 1634 11th Ave. on Capitol Hill off Broadway. Go to or call (206) 322-7030 for details.

Art News/Opportunities

Congratulations to visual artists Roldy Aguero Ablao, Junko Yamamoto and poet/writer Shin Yu Pai who all received 2015 GAP (Grants for Artist Projects) Grants from Artist Trust in 2015.

The Edwin T. Pratt Scholarship provides opportunities for artists of color to advance their careers through education and exposure. The scholarship incudes $2,500 credit to apply towards class.workshop registrations and related supply fees plus studio/equipment access fees, $500 materials stipend paid to the artists and Master level membership at Pratt Fine Arts Center. This scholarship is open to visual artists of color at any career stage, aged 18 years and olders. Deadline is Nov. 23, 2015. Go to for more details.

Washington Lawyers for the Arts present their “4th Annual Art Law Institute for Artists and the Attorneys Who Represent Them”  on Dec. 1 from 8:30am – 4:30pm at PerkinsCoie at 1201 Third Ave. in Seattle.

Friends of Asian Art Association is an all-volunteer organization that connects its members and the community to educations, cultural and social events tied to Asia and its diverse art forms and culture. Enjoy year-round activities and meet new friends who share similar interests by becoming a member. All are welcome to the activities but members get special discounts and perks. Go to FriendsOfAsianArt@earthlink or call (206) 522-5438. Seattle Asian Art Museum’s Alvord Board Room. (206) 522-5438 or email Friends [email protected] to make reservations and buy tickets.

The 2016 Annual Washington State Juried Art Competition is open to all Washington State artists. Deadline is Nov. 16, 2015 with over $10,000 in prizes. To enter  go to For more information, go to or call (360) 551-7526.

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