Kamloops BC – On September 24, the Kamloops Museum and Archives opens a new exhibition, Collective Memories: Japanese Canadian Reflections.
This exhibition shares memories and reflections from the local Japanese Canadian community and explores the broader issues of history and identity. Through the perspective of the Kamloops Japanese Canadian Association and its members, the memories and objects in this exhibition capture the collective voices of the Japanese Canadian community. It recalls the history of early settlement in the Kamloops region, the internment of Canadian citizens of Japanese heritage during World War II, the fight for redress, and the establishment of a cultural legacy that lives on today.
This exhibition explores questions of cultural identity. With the help of artists, including Jana Sasaki and filmmaker Jeff Chiba Stearns, this exhibition brings together contemporary and historical perspectives on the Japanese Canadian experience, locally and nationally.
The Kamloops Buddhist Temple and the Kamloops Judo Club have served as cultural hubs for the Japanese Canadian community. In the 1980s, the Yamada family generously donated a house and property 160 Vernon Avenue, the present location of the Japanese Cultural Center, for community gatherings. A museum was eventually established at this location to preserve and share Japanese Canadian history.
The exhibition has been developed by Kamloops Art Gallery Assistant Curator Craig Willms and aims to showcase the voice to the Japanese community and shares its cultural history.
Collective Memories: Japanese Canadian Reflections officially opens on September 24 with a private event due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The exhibition will be open to the public September 25 through March 11, 2022.
For more information, visit KamloopsMuseum.ca.