JANUARY 12 – JUNE 30, 2018
EDUCATION IN EXILE
STUDENT EXPERIENCE AT ROHWER RELOCATION CENTER
Education in Exile: Student Experience at Rohwer Relocation Center is third in the CALS Butler Center’s series of exhibitions exploring the Japanese American experience in World War II Arkansas. Partially curated by students throughout the state, Education in Exile offers a unique perspective into the school systems at Rohwer and Jerome, the two Japanese American incarceration centers in Arkansas. Student-selected works of art from the Butler Center’s Rosalie Santine Gould – Mabel Jamison Vogel collection illustrate what life was like for students living behind the barbed wire at Rohwer and Jerome.
AUGUST 11 – DECEMBER 30, 2017
THE ART OF INJUSTICE
JAPANESE AMERICAN EXPERIENCE IN WWII ARKANSAS
In 1945, as World War II was nearing an end, Paul Faris, a Hendrix College professor and photographer, was commissioned to photograph Japanese Americans who had been forced from their homes on the West Coast and incarcerated in Arkansas’s Rohwer War Relocation Authority center. His assignment was to photograph Rohwer’s artists as they painted, carved, wove, practiced calligraphy, etc., and to capture images of their artwork. Faris’s wife, Ann, a Conway public school teacher, took notes and interviewed many who appeared in the photographs. Paul Faris shot approximately 200 black-and-white photographs from which Allen H. Eaton chose a handful for publication in his book Beauty Behind Barbed Wire: The Arts of the Japanese in Our Relocation Camps.
Beginning on August 11, forty of these images will be on display at the Butler Center Galleries in Little Rock. The exhibition is the work of historian and curator Professor Sarah Wilkerson Freeman, Arkansas State University. In cooperation with Mary Ann Thurmond and Tim Faris, the children of the now deceased Paul and Ann Faris, Prof. Freeman has created a public history exhibition that tells the story not only of the incarceration experience at Rohwer, one of ten such camps in the nation, but also of the impact this extreme injustice had on local Arkansans, such as Pulitzer Prize–winning poet John Gould Fletcher and artists H. Louis Freund and Elsie Freund. The exhibition will include art and artifacts from the Butler Center’s extensive collections, including many from the Butler Center’s Rosalie Santine Gould-Mabel Jamison Vogel Collection.
“By bringing these photos to light, those involved hope to preserve something of the visual evidence of the unconstitutional treatment of Japanese Americans while simultaneously demythologizing the camp experience,” explained Freeman. “There is a lot of misinformation about the mass incarceration in 1942 of more than 120,000 individuals based solely on their ethnic and racial backgrounds. It is important for the histories of those whose lives were so painfully disrupted to be preserved for future generations to study. In Arkansas in particular, as part of the historically Jim Crow South, this episode is also a chapter in the story of an emerging social consciousness that gave rise to the civil rights and anti-war movements of the 1950s and 1960s. By focusing attention on the incarceration of individuals of Japanese heritage in the South in the 1940s, this collection adds another perspective to the history of struggles for human rights writ large.”
This project was funded, in part, by a grant from the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant Program.
JANUARY 13 – JULY 29, 2017
THE AMERICAN DREAM DEFERRED
JAPANESE AMERICAN EXPERIENCE IN WWII ARKANSAS
The American Dream Deferred shares the story of Arkansas’s involvement in the Japanese American incarceration during World War II. Using objects from the Butler Center’s Rosalie Santine Gould – Mabel Jamison Vogel collection, this exhibition seeks to educate the people of Arkansas and the nation about the experience of those who were forcibly imprisoned in camps throughout the nation, including two in Arkansas. By presenting this troubled chapter of Arkansas and American history, we hope to highlight the triumph of the human spirit shown by many of the people who were held in the camps and the tests of American democracy they represented.
SEPTEMBER 11 – NOVEMBER 7, 2015
WEAVING STORIES & HOPE
TEXTILE ARTS FROM THE JAPANESE AMERICAN INTERNMENT CAMP AT ROHWER, ARKANSAS
This is a collection of decorative patterns, landscapes, and still life compositions created on muslin and denim. The adults and children held during World War II at the Japanese American Internment Camp in Rohwer, Arkansas, are known for creating works of art on paper and canvas. What are not as well-known are the decorative patterns, landscapes, and still life images created on muslin and denim. This exhibition, which displays some objects for the first time, also includes crafted cloth shoes and an elegant privacy screen. The Butler Center would like to thank fabric conservators B. R. Howard & Associates for their help.
This project was funded, in part, by a grant from the Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Japanese American Confinement Sites Grant Program.
APRIL 11 – AUGUST 23, 2014
NEW ART FROM WWII CAMPS AT ROHWER AND JEROME
This show features artwork created by people held in the Japanese American internment camps in Arkansas during World War II. The exhibition was inspired by the Butler Center’s remarkable collection of art work from the camp at Rohwer, donated by Rosalie Santine Gould of McGehee, and by the extraordinary generosity of people who lived in the camps or had loved ones who did and wanted the Butler Center to have more art created at the camps at Rohwer and Jerome. People with a personal connection to the camps were deeply moved by the existence of the collection and by the Butler Center’s public exhibitions of camp materials and want as wide an audience as possible to know about this chapter of Arkansas and U.S. history.
SEPTEMBER 14 – DECEMBER 29, 2012
THE ART OF LIVING
MORE ARTWORK FROM THE ROSALIE SANTINE GOULD ROHWER COLLECTION
See more artwork from the Rosalie Santine Gould – Mabel Jamison Vogel Collection, the Butler Center showcased additional art created by internees at the Rohwer Relocation Center in Desha County and told the story of creativity in the face of dire circumstances.
SEPTEMBER 9 – NOVEMBER 26, 2011
THE ART OF LIVING
JAPANESE AMERICAN CREATIVE EXPERIENCE AT ROHWER
From the Rosalie Santine Gould – Mabel Jamison Vogel Collection, the Butler Center created a multimedia exhibition titled The Art of Living: Japanese American Creative Experience at Rohwer that showcased art created by internees at the Rohwer Relocation Center in Desha County and told the story of creativity in the face of dire circumstances.