Japanese Canadian artist Kellen Hatanaka tackles issues of identification and the Asian Canadian expertise via a multidisciplinary apply consisting of painting and sculpture. His most current do the job centres around the tale of the Vancouver Asahi baseball team which emerged from humble beginnings in 1914 and were being lively until eventually 1941 when they were disbanded owing to the pressured elimination of Canadians of Japanese ancestry from coastal British Columbia following events of the Second Earth War. The decline of the Asahi was a decline of Japanese Canadian id and a symbol of hope for equality and belonging. For Hatanaka, the rise and tumble of the workforce serves as a highly effective metaphor for the loss of pleasure, identification, and society professional by a lot of Japanese Canadians:
“The Japanese Canadian Internment Era has experienced enduring results on upcoming generations. As a yonsei or fourth era descendant, I am discovering the reduction of Japanese culture, identification, and custom in my possess practical experience and through my artmaking. With this perform I aspire to deal with the lack of aspirational Asian figures inside of well-known culture, especially in the canon of western portray and champion underrepresented narratives. Even though the subject matter matter is rooted in the past, the perform explores up to date problems of identity, race, inherited trauma, xenophobia, implicit bias, the search for belonging, the power of neighborhood and the consequences of decline of group.”
Hatanaka’s function was lately picked up by the Toronto Blue Jays who created a limited movie to be aired on the Jumbotron at the Rogers Centre. The film introduces Hatanaka and celebrates the historical past of the Asahi workforce in honour of Asian Heritage thirty day period. This year also marks the 80 calendar year anniversary of Japanese Canadian Internment and the 20 calendar year Anniversary of the Asahi getting honoured at the Skydome on the celebration of their induction into the Canadian Baseball Corridor of Fame. See more pictures from Hatanaka’s project with the Jays as perfectly as his newest exhibition, Protected|Home, down below.