Film Screening, Q&A;, and Reception—Masters of Modern Design: The Art of the Japanese American Experience

  • en
Film & Other Media

May 20199

Japanese American National Museum
Tateuchi Democracy Forum
111 N. Central Ave
Los Angeles, California, 90012
United States


From the hand-drawn typeface on the cover of The Godfather to Herman Miller’s biomorphic coffee table, the work of Japanese American designers including Ruth Asawa, George Nakashima, Isamu Noguchi, S. Neil Fujita, and Gyo Obata permeated postwar culture. While these second generation Japanese American artists have been celebrated, less-discussed is how their World War II incarceration—a period of intense hardship and discrimination—had a powerful effect on their lives and art.

Masters of Modern Design: The Art of the Japanese American Experience, a documentary co-production between JANM’s Watase Media Arts Center and KCET for the series ARTBOUND, explores the ways in which their camp experiences impacted their lives, influenced their art, and sent them on trajectories that eventually led to their changing the face of American culture with their immense talents.

A Q&A with the filmmakers and some of the people interviewed for the film and a light reception will follow the screening. This program is free, but RSVPs are recommended here.

The film will be broadcast in Southern California on KCET and available for streaming on starting May 15. Please check their website in May for more information.

Image: Ruth Asawa, 1952. Photo by Imogen Cunningham. ©2019 Imogen Cunningham Trust.


JANM . Last modified Apr 30, 2019 7:39 p.m.

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