This statue is located outside the Bremen Jewish Heritage and Holocaust Museum in Atlanta. It was at that museum that my hubby and I gained a more visceral understanding of the internment of Japanese-Americans during the second world war. We went there to see a special exhibit of some of those internees' artwork.
The sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being. [Carl Jung]
And one of the presenters showed a film. An amazing film. Days of Waiting won a short documentary Academy Award for creator Stephen Okasaka in 1990, and it tells the story of Estelle Ishigo, a Caucasian woman who chose to go to an internment camp with her Japanese husband. Here's a very short snippet of the movie, just to give you a taste:
It is the mission of art to remind man from time to time that he is human... [Ben Shahn]
Okay, I don't want to turn this into a three-part post, so let me get right to showing you some of the artwork in the exhibit. Ready?
One of Estelle Ishigo's many drawings.
Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life. [Pablo Picasso]
The artist has a special task. That of reminding men of their humanity and the promise of their creativity. [Lewis Mumford]
Man must live and create. Create to the point of tears. [Albert Camus]
Sorry about the light reflection in this shot, but two things I found especially poignant about this portrait are the pillow and wall-hanging, which show pride and support for this man's son, who was away ... fighting in the war ... as a member of the U.S. military.
The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places. [Ernest Hemingway]
Just as a farmer provides sustenance for the body, the artist provides sustenance for the soul. [Arturo Tello]
There were many, many more things to be seen in the exhibit, like wood carvings, and some amazing jewelry and decorative pieces made out of colored string. But I hope what you've seen here was enough to provide you with a touch of understanding and inspiration. In spite of the circumstances, the human spirit prevailed.
Art is the glorification of the human spirit. [Hans Hoffman]
For those of you who live in close proximity to Atlanta, this uplifting exhibit will be open until the end of May. Definitely worth the trip. Bremen's permanent holocaust museum is worth seeing, too, but there is nothing uplifting to see there.
Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.
What lies behind you and what lies in front of you pales in comparison to what lies inside you. [Ralph Waldo Emerson]