It’s week 20 of our Kansas sesquicentennial series, and as May is Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month, we’re taking a closer look at artist Roger Shimomura.
Originally from Seattle, Washington, Shimomura lives in Lawrence, Kansas and taught at the School of Visual Art at the University of Kansas from 1969–2004. “His paintings, prints, and theater pieces address sociopolitical issues of Asian America and have often been inspired by diaries kept by his late immigrant grandmother for 56 years of her life.”  In a review by Regina Hackett, art critic for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, “Roger Shimomura paints racist incidents from the racist’s point of view. His cold, flat style—a blend of American Pop and Japanese ukiyo-e or “floating world” graphics—gets inside his hot subject and gives it a deadpan edge.”
About 52 for 150
Every object has a story, and stories build history. To celebrate 150 years of Kansas statehood we’re featuring 52 objects (or collections of related objects)—something new each week throughout the year—from the Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library’s 130-year-old special, and permanent collections, that represent our collective state history and cultural diversity.
Our collections are available for teachers, students, researchers and general interest, and we hope this online video program will provide insight into what’s so “special” about Special Collections. Your library’s commitment to collecting art and preserving local history makes it possible for users today and in the future to have immediate access to invaluable research material and cultural artifacts.
To make an appointment to see work by Roger Shimomura, or get help finding books and videos related to him or his work, call or stop by the Sabatini Gallery (785-580-4515). We’re located on your right just beyond the Library rotunda entrance.