Resilience artist spotlight: Jerry Takigawa

Artist Jerry Takigawa uses historical family photographs, reprinted and integrated with natural artifacts, objects, documents and memories arranged in temporary collage to create still-life images. He co-curated the Resilience—A Sansei Sense of Legacy exhibit with Gail Enns.

Told from the point of view of Sansei (third generation) Japanese Americans, Resilience—A Sansei Sense of Legacy is an exhibition of eight artists whose work reflects on the effect of Japanese American internment in World War II as it resonated from generation to generation. Resilience will be on view in the Alice C. Sabatini Gallery until May 22, 2022. Here’s a spotlight on one of the exhibit’s artists Jerry Takigawa in his own words.

Takigawa’s artist statement

My latest series, Balancing Cultures, highlights the racism deeply woven into the fabric of our society. A recent discovery of family photographs compelled me to express the shame and loss suffered by my family’s incarceration in the WWII American concentration camps. These images add humanity to the historical record—facts require testimony to be remembered. I seek to give voice to the feelings my family suppressed; reminding us that hysteria, racism, and economic exploitation are still a force in our country today. The camps designed to assuage these reactions were transformed into a shadow legacy for a Japanese American generation and their descendants. If silence sanctions—documentation is resistance.

Traces of Misconduct from the series Balancing Cultures, 2016-21

photograph of four people with barracks in background








Citizen’s Indefinite Leave from the series Balancing Cultures, 2016-21

photograph of two people with ID cards














Brea Black is the Art Librarian and Book Arts Curator in the Alice C. Sabatini Gallery. Her favorite thing is to share the wonderful world of artists' books with the community. She also leads the Arts & Crafts team and teaches workshops on book making and a variety of other crafty topics.