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School of Design in Chicago : refugees east and west / Beatrice Takeuchi

Creator:
Takeuchi, Beatrice, 1921-  Search this
Names:
Chicago School of Design  Search this
Aaron, David  Search this
Filipowski, Richard, 1923-2008  Search this
Giedion, S. (Sigfried), 1888-1968  Search this
Hayakawa, S. I.  Search this
Keck, George Fred  Search this
Kepes, Gyorgy, 1906-2001  Search this
Leckie, Hubert W., 1913-1993  Search this
Moholy-Nagy, László, 1895-1946  Search this
Richard, Edgar  Search this
Waldheim, Jack  Search this
Extent:
54 Pages
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Date:
undated
1998
Scope and Contents:
Beatrice Takeuchi memoir, 1998. Takeuchi begins with her recollections of the bombing of Pearl Harbor and her stay in a War Relocation camp and describes in detail her impressions of the faculty, staff, and students at School of Design in Chicago. Most notable recollections involve instructors Lazlo Moholy-Nagy, Jack Waldheim, George Fred Keck, Hubert Leckie, S.I. Hayakawa, and others. The memoir concludes with a summation of her career in the arts.
Biographical / Historical:
Beatrice Takeuchi (1921-2020) was a Japanese American educator based in Chicago, Illinois and Washington, D.C. Takeuchi was born in Seattle, Washington. After the bombing of Pearl Harber, she was sent to a War Relocation Center, Pallyup, Washington and Minidoka, Idaho in August 1942. In October of 1942 she was allowed to leave to pursue studies in industrial design and architecture at the Chicago School of Design (fd. 1937 as New Bauhaus). From 1945-54 she taught foundation and visual design and held various positions in architecture and design studios in Washington, D.C., moving to NYC in 1954 and working as a free lance architect until 1968. She lived and worked in Chicago from 1968-1993, when she retired to Michigan.
Provenance:
Donated 1998 by Beatrice Takeuchi.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Occupation:
Architects  Search this
Topic:
Japanese Americans -- Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945 -- Diaries  Search this
Asian American art  Search this
Asian American artists  Search this
Asian American women artists  Search this
Japanese American art  Search this
Japanese American artists  Search this
Japanese American women artists  Search this
Asian American architects  Search this
Asian American educators  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.takebeat
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-takebeat

Kamekichi Tokita Papers, circa 1900-circa 2010, bulk 1900-1948

Creator:
Tokita, Kamekichi, 1897-1948  Search this
Tokita, Kamekichi, 1897-1948  Search this
Subject:
Callahan, Kenneth  Search this
Tokita, Shokichi  Search this
Tokita, Elsie  Search this
Baker, Burt Brown  Search this
Boynton, Roy  Search this
Art Institute of Seattle  Search this
Seattle Art Museum  Search this
Hotel Cadillac (Seattle, Wash.)  Search this
Henry Art Gallery  Search this
Public Works of Art Project  Search this
Minidoka Relocation Center  Search this
Type:
Photograph albums
Photographs
Sketches
Scrapbooks
Diaries
Topic:
World War, 1939-1945 -- Japanese Americans  Search this
Japanese Americans -- Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945 -- Diaries  Search this
Asian American art  Search this
Asian American artists  Search this
Japanese American art  Search this
Japanese American artists  Search this
Asian American painters  Search this
Art, American -- Northwestern States  Search this
Painting, Modern -- 20th century -- Washington (State) -- Seattle  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- Northwestern States  Search this
Theme:
Asian American  Search this
Lives of American Artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)10444
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)213849
AAA_collcode_tokikame
Theme:
Asian American
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_213849
Online Media:

School of Design in Chicago : refugees east and west / Beatrice Takeuchi, undated

Creator:
Takeuchi, Beatrice, 1921-  Search this
Takeuchi, Beatrice, 1921-  Search this
Subject:
Moholy-Nagy, László  Search this
Waldheim, Jack  Search this
Leckie, Hubert W.  Search this
Richard, Edgar  Search this
Giedion, S. (Sigfried)  Search this
Hayakawa, S. I.  Search this
Keck, George Fred  Search this
Aaron, David  Search this
Filipowski, Richard  Search this
Kepes, Gyorgy  Search this
Chicago School of Design  Search this
Topic:
Japanese Americans -- Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945 -- Diaries  Search this
Asian American art  Search this
Asian American artists  Search this
Asian American women artists  Search this
Japanese American art  Search this
Japanese American artists  Search this
Japanese American women artists  Search this
Asian American architects  Search this
Asian American educators  Search this
Theme:
Asian American  Search this
Lives of American Artists  Search this
Chicago's Art-Related Archival Materials: A Terra Foundation Resource  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)6153
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)216384
AAA_collcode_takebeat
Theme:
Asian American
Lives of American Artists
Chicago's Art-Related Archival Materials: A Terra Foundation Resource
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_216384

Chiura Obata papers, 1891-2000, bulk 1942-1945

Creator:
Obata, Chiura, 1885-1975  Search this
Obata, Chiura, 1885-1975  Search this
Subject:
Obata, Gyo, 1923-  Search this
Okubo, Miné  Search this
Central Utah Relocation Center  Search this
Tanforan Assembly Center (San Bruno, Calif.)  Search this
Type:
Drawings
Sketchbooks
Diaries
Topic:
Japanese American art  Search this
Japanese American artists  Search this
Asian American art  Search this
Asian American artists  Search this
Japanese Americans -- Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945  Search this
World War, 1939-1945 -- Japanese Americans  Search this
Asian American painters  Search this
Asian American educators  Search this
Theme:
Asian American  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)17607
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)397059
AAA_collcode_obatchiu
Theme:
Asian American
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_397059
Online Media:

Kamekichi Tokita Papers

Creator:
Tokita, Kamekichi  Search this
Names:
Art Institute of Seattle  Search this
Henry Art Gallery  Search this
Hotel Cadillac (Seattle, Wash.)  Search this
Minidoka Relocation Center  Search this
Public Works of Art Project  Search this
Seattle Art Museum  Search this
Baker, Burt Brown  Search this
Boynton, Roy  Search this
Callahan, Kenneth, 1905-1986  Search this
Tokita, Elsie  Search this
Tokita, Shokichi  Search this
Extent:
1.5 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photograph albums
Photographs
Sketches
Scrapbooks
Diaries
Date:
circa 1900-circa 2010
bulk 1900-1948
Summary:
The scattered personal papers of Seattle area painter Kamekichi Tokita (1897-1948) measure 1.5 linear feet and date from circa 1900 to circa 2010 with the bulk of the material dating from circa 1910 to 1948. The papers include biographical materials, including documents about the closing of the War Relocation Authority's Minidoka Camp in Idaho; correspondence; three diaries written in Japanese documenting Tokita's war time experiences and relocation to Minidoka, two earlier notebooks, also written in Japanese, and scattered notes; a few personal business records; printed materials; one scrapbook; sketches; and one family photograph album.
Scope and Contents:
The scattered personal papers of Seattle area painter Kamekichi Tokita (1897-1948) measure 1.5 linear feet and date from circa 1900 to circa 2010 with the bulk of the material dating from circa 1910 to 1948. The papers include biographical materials, including documents about the closing of the War Relocation Authority's Minidoka Camp in Idaho; correspondence; three diaries written in Japanese documenting Tokita's war time experiences and relocation to Minidoka, two earlier notebooks, also written in Japanese, and scattered notes; a few personal business records; printed materials; one scrapbook; sketches; and one family photograph album.

Biographical materials include a file on the Public Works of Art Project, a file on the War Relocation Authority and the closing of the Minidoka internment camp, an immigration document, and an essay on Tokita written by Shokichi and Elsie Tokita.

Correspondence is primarily professional in nature and concerns exhibitions at the Seattle Museum of Art (previously the Art Institute of Seattle) and other topics. Correspondents include Burt Brown Baker, Roy Boynton, Kenneth Callahan, Henry Gallery, the Seattle Art Museum, and others.

Tokita's writings consist of three diaries, two notebooks, and scattered general writings, most of which are in Japanese. The diaries were kept during World War II and document the family's confinement at the Minidoka Relocation Camp in Idaho. Included is a transcript of the diaries which were translated from prewar to modern Japanese by Haruo Takasugi and from modern Japanese to English by Naomi Kusunoki-Martin.

Scattered business records include a patent application, records from the Cadillac Hotel, and a claim filed through the Department of Justice. A few published books in English and Japanese are about art and religion. Also found are exhibition catalogs for shows in which Tokita participated and clippings. There is one mixed media scrapbook about Tokita's exhibitions.

Artwork consists of unsigned pencil and watercolor sketches by Tokita. There is also a family photo album containing snapshots and portraits of the Tokita family and friends.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 8 series:

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1934-1985 (Box 1; 4 folders)

Series 2: Correspondence, circa 1920-1944 (Box 1; 6 folders)

Series 3: Writings and Notes, 1923-circa 1950 (Box 1; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 4: Personal Business Records, 1928-1950 (Box 1; 3 folders)

Series 5: Printed Material, circa 1910-1940 (Box 1-3; 0.5 linear feet)

Series 6: Scrapbook, 1929-1933 (Box 2-3; 0.1 linear feet)

Series 7: Artwork, circa 1910-1940s (Box 2-3; 0.1 linear feet)

Series 8: Photograph Album, circa 1900-1930 (Box 2; 0.2 linear feet)
Biographical / Historical:
Kamekichi Tokita (1897-1948) was a Japanese American painter and businessman who emigrated from Japan in 1919 and settled in Seattle, Washington. Tokita was a member of the Seattle area progressive artists' collective known as the "Group of Twelve" and widely exhibited his artwork throughout the Pacific Northwest.

Kamekichi Tokita was born in Shizouka City, Japan and immigrated to the United States at the age of twenty-two. He settled in the Japantown neighborhood of Seattle, Washington where he opened the Noto Sign Company with business partner Kenjiro Nomura. Nomura was also an artist and encouraged Tokita's interest in oil painting. They both used the sign shop as their studio after-hours. In 1936, the Noto Sign Company closed and Tokita took over management of the Cadillac Hotel, although he continued to paint commercial signs. Tokita married Haruko Suzuki in 1932 and together they had eight children.

As a child in Japan, Tokita studied calligraphy in China. Although he attended a few art school classes in in the U.S. and went on weekend painting trips with Nomura and other Seattle artists, Tokita is considered to be a largely self-trained artist. Support and recognition came from Dorothy V. Morrison of the Henry Gallery at the University of Washington who wrote to Tokita to inquire whether a "group of Japanese artists in the city" would be interested in exhibiting their work. Although the exhibition of Japanese artists did not happen, Tokita later loaned paintings to the gallery for inclusion in an exhibition sponsored by the American Federation of Arts. Throughout the late 1920s and 1930s Tokita exhibited widely in the Seattle area. In 1935, the Seattle Daily Times touted the work of Tokita and other painters in the "Group of Twelve" that also included Morris Graves, Kenneth Callahan, Walter F. Isaacs, and Ambrose and Viola Patterson, among others. In 1942, after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Kamekichi Tokita and his family (five children at the time), along with the 110,000 – 120,000 Japanese and Japanese-American citizens living on the West Coast, were ordered under President Franklin Roosevelt's Executive Order 9066 to relocate to one of several confinement camps. For the first six months of their confinement, the family lived at a temporary Civilian Assembly Center in Puyallup, Washington. They were transferred to the Minidoka Relocation Camp in Hunt, Idaho where they remained until their release in 1945. The confinement camps were organized much like communes and independent cities (fenced and guarded) where the residents were self-reliant for most of their basic necessities, including schooling. While interned in Minidoka, Tokita worked as a sign painter and continued to privately paint, using whatever materials he could find, including beaver board. His work was featured in art shows at the camp. Many of his camp scenes are now lost or were given away.

At the end of World War II, Tokita and his family (now seven children) moved back to the Seattle-area. Unable to find housing, the Tokitas lived at a Japanese language school until Tokita was able to re-establish his business. During this period he painted very little. In 1946 Tokita and his wife purchased the New Lucky Hotel in the Chinatown area of Seattle. Shortly thereafter, Tokita fell ill and died in 1948. Many of his works are believed to have been destroyed or lost. Some of his work remains, however, and is among the permanent collections of the Seattle Art Museum, the Tacoma Art Museum, the Portland Art Museum.

Note: Much of this biographical note was taken from "A Biographical Resume" written by Shokichi and Elsie Y. Tokita.
Separated Materials:
A watercolor painting on paper by Kamekichi Tokita, Untitled (Still Life), 9 x 12 in. was transferred to the Smithsonian American Art Museum in 2012.
Provenance:
The Kamekichi Tokita papers were donated by his son, Shokichi Tokita in 1990. He donated a third and final diary in 2017. They were collected as part of the Archives of American Art Northwest Asian American project in Seattle, Washington.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Occupation:
Painters -- Washington (State) -- Seattle  Search this
Topic:
World War, 1939-1945 -- Japanese Americans  Search this
Japanese Americans -- Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945 -- Diaries  Search this
Asian American art  Search this
Asian American artists  Search this
Japanese American art  Search this
Japanese American artists  Search this
Asian American painters  Search this
Art, American -- Northwestern States  Search this
Painting, Modern -- 20th century -- Washington (State) -- Seattle  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- Northwestern States  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photograph albums
Photographs
Sketches
Scrapbooks
Diaries
Citation:
Kamekichi Tokita papers, circa 1900-circa 2010, bulk circa 1910-1948. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.tokikame
See more items in:
Kamekichi Tokita Papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-tokikame

Roger Shimomura papers

Creator:
Shimomura, Roger, 1939-  Search this
Names:
Chin, Frank, 1940-  Search this
Day, Akiko  Search this
Hughes, Jonathan R. T.  Search this
Miller, Wayne  Search this
Extent:
2.6 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Scripts (documents)
Date:
1965-1990
Summary:
The papers of painter, printmaker, performance artist, and teacher Roger Shimomura measure 2.6 linear feet and date from 1965 to 1990. Found within the papers are biographical materials, correspondence, writings, notes, printed material, one scrapbook, and photographs.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of painter, printmaker, performance artist, and teacher Roger Shimomura measure 2.6 linear feet and date from 1965 to 1990. Found within the papers are biographical materials, correspondence, writings, notes, printed material, one scrapbook, and photographs.

Biographical materials include a photograph of Shimomura and a resume. The bulk of the papers consist of correspondence files about exhibitions, grants, performances, lectures, and the Japanese-American redress movement. Correspondence is with friends, colleagues, galleries, and with universities and colleges. Correspondents include Frank Chin, Akiko Day, Jonathan R. T. Hughes, and Wayne Miller. Writings and notes include Shimomura's artist's statement, scripts to four plays, and one folder of miscellaneous notes. The papers also include clippings, exhibition announcements, catalogs and miscellaneous printed material. A scrapbook contains clippings of articles that document Shimomura's career. Photographs are of artwork by other artists.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 6 series:

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1989-1990 (Box 1; 1 folder)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1969-1990 (Boxes 1-3; 2.3 linear feet)

Series 3: Writings and Notes, 1984, 1987-1989 (Box 3; 5 folders)

Series 4: Printed Material, 1975-1990 (Box 4; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 5: Scrapbook, 1975-1989 (Box 4; 1 folder)

Series 6: Photographs, circa 1970s (Box 4; 1 folder)
Biographical Note:
Roger Shimomura (b. 1939) is a Japanese American painter, printmaker, performance artist, and teacher who has worked primarily in Kansas since 1969.

Roger Shimomura was born in 1939 in Seattle, Washington. He was a third generation Japanese-American and received his B.A. in Graphic Design from the University of Washington in 1961, and a M.F.A. in Painting from Syracuse University in 1969. Shimomura spent two childhood years in one of 10 concentration camps for Japanese-Americans during WWII, and later served as an officer in the United States Army from 1962 to 1965. He was active in the Japanese-American redress movement in the 1970s. Since the 1970s, Shimomura's work has combined American popular imagery with the Japanese ukiyo-e tradition.

He has had over 125 solo exhibitions of paintings and prints, as well as presented his experimental theater pieces at such venues as the Franklin Furnace, New York City, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, and The Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC. Shimomura has been a visiting artist and lectured on his work at more than 200 universities, art schools, and museums across the country. Shimomura began teaching at the University of Kansas' Department of Art in 1969 and worked there until his retirement in 2004. At that time he started the Shimomura Faculty Research Support Fund, an endowment to foster faculty research in the Department of Art. Throughout his career, Shimomura has had numerous exhibitions and experimental theater pieces on a national level. In 1999, the Seattle Urban League designated a scholarship in his name that has been awarded annually to a Seattle resident pursuing a career in art. In 2002, the College Art Association presented him with the "Artist Award for Most Distinguished Body of Work," for his 4 year, 12-museum national tour of the painting exhibition, "An American Diary." Shimomura continues to live and work in Kansas.
Provenance:
Roger Shimomura donated his papers in 1990, as part of the Archives of American Art's Northwest Asian-American project in Seattle.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Occupation:
Painters -- Kansas -- Lawrence  Search this
Topic:
Painting, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Japanese American painting  Search this
Asian American art  Search this
Asian American artists  Search this
Japanese American art  Search this
Japanese American artists  Search this
Japanese Americans -- Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945  Search this
Asian American painters  Search this
Asian American printmakers  Search this
Asian American performance artists  Search this
Performance artists -- Kansas -- Lawrence  Search this
Printmakers -- Kansas -- Lawrence  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching -- Kansas -- Lawrence  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Scripts (documents)
Citation:
Roger Shimomura papers, 1965-1990. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.shimroge
See more items in:
Roger Shimomura papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-shimroge

Chiura Obata papers

Creator:
Obata, Chiura  Search this
Names:
Central Utah Relocation Center  Search this
Tanforan Assembly Center (San Bruno, Calif.)  Search this
Obata, Gyo, 1923-  Search this
Okubo, Miné, 1912-2001  Search this
Extent:
3.6 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Drawings
Sketchbooks
Diaries
Date:
1891-2000
bulk 1942-1945
Summary:
The papers of Japanese-American artist and educator Chiura Obata measure 3.6 linear feet and date from circa 1891 to 2000 with the bulk of the material dating from 1942 to 1945. The collection contains biographical material primarily related to Obata's family's forced relocation from Berkeley to Tanforan detention center and incarceration at the Topaz Relocation center; correspondence with family, friends, and colleagues; writings by Chiura Obata and others; material related to the art schools Obata established at Tanforan and Topaz; teaching files and professional activities; exhibition files; printed material, including TREK, and Topaz Moon: Chiura Obata's Art of Internment; photographic material; and sketches and sketchbooks. There is a 1.0 linear foot unprocessed addition to this collection donated in 2020 that includes correspondence, writings, subject files and printed material.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of Japanese-American artist and educator Chiura Obata measure 3.6 linear feet and date from circa 1891 to 2000 with the bulk of the material dating from 1942 to 1945. The collection contains biographical material primarily related to Obata's family's forced relocation from Berkeley to Tanforan detention center and incarceration at the Topaz Relocation center; correspondence with family, friends, and colleagues; writings by Chiura Obata and others; material related to the art schools Obata established at Tanforan and Topaz; teaching files and professional activities; exhibition files; printed material, including TREK, and Topaz Moon: Chiura Obata's Art of Internment; photographic material; and sketches and sketchbooks.

Biographical material includes Chiura Obata's school diplomas and resumes, as well as material related to his family's forced relocation and incarceration at Tanforan and Topaz, and eventual resettlement. There is a small amount of biographical material on others, such as records of memorial meetings held for Perham Nahl and material related to the forced relocation of Hiro Niwa.

The correspondence series consists of letters between Chiura Obata and family, friends, and colleagues, primarily while he was incarcerated at Tanforan and Topaz. Notable correspondents include John Boylin, Monroe Deutsch, Dorothy Parker, Miné Okubo, and Ruth Kingman. There are also letters of appreciation from students who attended the art schools established by Chiura Obata at Tanforan and Topaz.

Writings include diaries, lecture drafts, notes, and essays. Most of the writings are about art, but some are about Obata's experiences at Tanforan and Topaz. Also included in this series are translations of Obata's paintings and poems and writings by others on various subjects.

The professional activities series contains materials related to Obata's work as an artist and educator from his time teaching at the University of California, Berkeley, to the Tanforan and Topaz Art Schools he founded. Most of the series consists of teaching files, but there are other files on projects, commissions, inventory lists, and art donations.

Exhibition files include a range of materials related to group and solo exhibitions of Chiura Obata's paintings. There are exhibition lists, price lists, catalogs, photographs, correspondence, loan forms, clippings, printed material, and one guest register.

Printed material includes exhibition announcements, catalogs, magazines, newspapers, clippings and calendars. Noteworthy items include copies of TREK, which were published by the Japanese Americans incarcerated at Topaz; printed material related to Miné Okubo; and copies of Topaz Moon: Chiura Obata's Art of Internment.

Photographic material includes an album from the Pan Pacific International Exposition and photographs of the Obata family's forced relocation from Berkeley, the Tanforan Art School, and their home in Webster Groves, Missouri, after they left the incarceration camps. There are also photographs used in the book Topaz Moon and photographs by the War Relocation Authority.

Artwork consists of a few watercolors, sketchbooks, and sketches, some of which were created during Obata's incarceration at Topaz. Other sketches were done for commercial work in St. Louis. There is an autograph book containing sketches and paintings by others.

Researchers should note that the term "evacuation" has been replaced in original folder titles with "forced relocation" for more accurate historical representation.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged in 9 series.

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1894-1898, 1935-circa 1975 (Box 1, OV 4; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1925-1992 (Box 1; 0.4 linear feet)

Series 3: Writings, 1924-circa 1964, circa 1986 (Box 1; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 4: Professional Activities, 1913, 1924-1967 (Boxes 1-2, OV 4; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 5: Exhibition Files, 1925-1951 (Box 2, OV4; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 6: Printed Material, 1901-circa 1906, 1925-2000 (Box 2, OV 5; 0.8 linear feet)

Series 7: Photographic Material, circa 1891-1969 (Box 3; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 8: Artwork, 1917-circa 1945 (Box 3, OV 5; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 9: Unprocessed Addition (Box 6; 1.0 linear feet)
Biographical / Historical:
Chiura Obata (1885-1975) was a Japanese-American artist and educator. Born Zoroku Sato in Okayama prefecture in Japan, Obata showed artistic talent early in life. He joined the artist group Nihon Bijutsuin (the Japan Art Institute) and apprenticed with Tanryo Murata. Obata also trained in Western and modern Japanese art.

In 1903 Obata immigrated to the United States. He worked as a commercial designer and as an illustrator for newspapers including the New World and the Japanese American, San Francisco's two Japanese newspapers. In 1921 he co-founded the East West Art Society in San Francisco. He had his first exhibition for American audiences in 1928 and began teaching at the University of California, Berkeley, in 1932.

In April of 1942, as a result of Executive Order 9066, Chiura Obata and his family were forcibly relocated from Berkley to Tanforan detention center. By May he and fellow artists had established an art school with over 900 students. The school was successful and they were able to hold an exhibition outside of the camp in July. In September of 1942, the Obatas were moved to the Topaz War Relocation center, where Obata founded the Topaz Art School.

In the spring of 1943 in the wake of the controversy over loyalty oaths, Obata was attacked by another prisoner who considered him to be a spy. After recovering in Topaz's hospital, he was released for his own safety. He and his family moved to St. Louis, Missouri, where his son Gyo was attending architecture school.

In 1945 Obata was reinstated as an instructor at the University of California, Berkeley. He continued to exhibit his artwork and went on sketching and painting trips with the Sierra Club. In 1954 he became a naturalized citizen.

After his retirement from the University of California, Berkeley in 1953, Obata and his wife, Haruko, led tours to Japan to see Japanese gardens and art. He also gave lectures and demonstrations on Japanese brush painting and led tours through California. In 1965 Obata received the Order of the Sacred Treasure Emperor's Award for promoting good will and cultural understanding between the United States and Japan. Chiura Obata died in 1975 at the age of 90.
Provenance:
The Chiura Obata papers were donated to the Archives of American Art in 2018 and 2020 by Kimi Kodani Hill and Mia Kodani Brill, Chiura Obata's grandchildren.
Restrictions:
This collection is open for research. Access to original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Occupation:
Artists -- California  Search this
Painters -- California -- Berkeley  Search this
Educators  Search this
Topic:
Japanese American artists  Search this
Asian American artists  Search this
Japanese Americans -- Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945  Search this
World War, 1939-1945 -- Japanese Americans  Search this
Genre/Form:
Drawings
Sketchbooks
Diaries
Citation:
Chiura Obata papers, circa 1891-2000. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.obatchiu
See more items in:
Chiura Obata papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-obatchiu
Online Media:

Taken from the Paradise Isle : the Hoshida family story / by George and Tamae Hoshida ; edited by Heidi Kim ; foreword by Franklin Odo

Author:
Hoshida, George 1907-1985  Search this
Hoshida, Tamae 1908-1970  Search this
Kim, Heidi  Search this
Subject:
Hoshida, George 1907-1985  Search this
Hoshida, George 1907-1985  Search this
Hoshida, Tamae 1908-1970  Search this
Hoshida, George 1907-1985 Family  Search this
Jerome Relocation Center (Ark.)  Search this
Physical description:
xxxv, 288 pages : illustrations, maps ; 24 cm
Type:
Biography
Diaries
Correspondence
Records and correspondence
Place:
Hawaii
Date:
2016
2015
Topic:
Japanese Americans--Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945  Search this
Japanese Americans  Search this
Call number:
D769.8.A6 H66 2016
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1093791

The hope of another spring : Takuichi Fujii, artist and wartime witness / Barbara Johns ; foreword by Roger Daniels ; introduction to the diary by Sandy Kita

Title:
Takuichi Fujii, artist and wartime witness
Author:
Johns, Barbara 1942-  Search this
Author of foreword:
Daniels, Roger  Search this
Writer of introduction:
Kita, Sandy 1950-  Search this
Subject:
Fujii, Takuichi 1891-1964  Search this
Fujii, Takuichi 1891-1964 Criticism and interpretation  Search this
Puyallup Assembly Center (Puyallup, Wash.)  Search this
Physical description:
xi, 334 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 26 cm
Type:
Biography
Diaries
Place:
United States
Washington (State)
Date:
2017
20th century
Topic:
Japanese American painters  Search this
World War, 1939-1945--Personal narratives, Japanese American  Search this
World War, 1939-1945--Concentration camps  Search this
Japanese Americans--Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945  Search this
Japanese Americans--History  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1083459

Judgment without trial : Japanese American imprisonment during World War II / Tetsuden Kashima

Author:
Kashima, Tetsuden 1940-  Search this
Physical description:
xi, 316 p. : 2 ill., 1 map ; 24 cm
Type:
Books
Date:
2004
2004, c2003
Topic:
Japanese Americans--Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945  Search this
World War, 1939-1945--Japanese Americans  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_764305

The Kikuchi diary : chronicle from an American concentration camp ; the Tanforan journals of Charles Kikuchi / edited and with an introduction by John Modell

Author:
Kikuchi, Charles  Search this
Modell, John  Search this
Subject:
Kikuchi, Charles Diaries  Search this
Tanforan Assembly Center (San Bruno, Calif.)  Search this
Physical description:
258 p. : ill. ; 24 cm
Type:
Books
Place:
California
Date:
1973
Topic:
Japanese Americans--Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945  Search this
Japanese Americans--Diaries  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_517910

A principled stand : the story of Hirabayashi v. United States / Gordon K. Hirabayashi with James A. Hirabayashi and Lane Ryo Hirabayashi

Author:
Hirabayashi, Gordon K  Search this
Hirabayashi, James A  Search this
Hirabayashi, Lane Ryo  Search this
Subject:
Hirabayashi, Gordon K Trials, litigation, etc  Search this
United States Constitution 5th Amendment  Search this
Physical description:
xix, 217 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Type:
Books
Date:
2013
©2013
Topic:
Japanese Americans--Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945  Search this
Japanese Americans--Legal status, laws, etc  Search this
Japanese Americans--Civil rights  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1059296

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