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Pictures of Belonging: Miki Hayakawa, Hisako Hibi, and Miné Okubo

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Pictures of Belonging: Miki Hayakawa, Hisako Hibi, and Miné Okubo brings together over ninety works by three pioneering Japanese American artists from the pre–World War II era. Despite long careers and critical acclaim, Miki Hayakawa, Hisako Hibi, and Miné Okubo have largely been overlooked in traditional American art history. This groundbreaking exhibition reintroduces their work and explores their deep connections with each other for the first time.

Through three chronological sections, the exhibition traces the careers of these artists from the 1920s to the 1990s. "Faces & Communities" presents pre–World War II portraiture and figurative works, while "Belongings & (dis)Locations" showcases landscapes and still lifes from the prewar and wartime periods. The final section, "Explorations & Rediscoveries," features postwar abstractions. Pictures of Belonging foregrounds the rich and heterogeneous oeuvres of Hayakawa, Hibi, and Okubo, which spanned eight decades and four states, highlighting the diverse communities in which these trailblazing artists flourished before, during, and after World War II. Published in conjunction with the exhibition of the same name, this book shifts the spotlight from the injustice and tragedy of Japanese American incarceration toward a broader picture of the so-called American experience through the compelling, divergent lives and artworks of these women of Japanese descent.

Edited by ShiPu Wang
University of California Press
Hardcover, 188 pages
ISBN 9780520394674

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