Wed, Mar 09|
Online - Persimmon and Frog: The Story of Sumi Artist Fumiko Kimura
Speaker: David Berger, Author Special Guest: Fumiko Kimura, Artist Sponsored by the Redmond Historical Society and the Redmond Library
Time & Location
Mar 09, 2022, 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM
About the Event
Written intimately and in the first person, Persimmon and Frog, My Life and Art, a Kibei-Nisei’s Story of Self-Discovery reveals a less familiar story from World War II. Born in America to immigrant farmers, Fumiko Kimura was visiting Japan as a 10-year-old when the US entered the war. She was stranded in Japan and spent her preteen and adolescent years in that foreign country, an American who looked completely Japanese. She went to school, absorbing Japanese aesthetics and the solace of art making. After the war, Kimura returned to the US. Relearning English, she graduated college and became a research chemist. In her forties, married with a family, she left that career and pursued her passion for painting with watercolor, sumi ink, and acrylics. She studied Western art at university, but later focused on the Japanese brush and ink on paper. She would eventually help found Puget Sound Sumi Artists. Kimura is now an influential and respected artistic figure in the Pacific Northwest, and she continues to paint and exhibit. Part memoir and part artistic survey, this book takes Kimura’s writings, diaries, and interviews, and traces her artistic development from early watercolors of Tacoma’s industrial waterfront to recent calligraphic paintings that poignantly engage Eastern and Western influences. The book deftly profiles both her personal life and artistic aspirations, telling a story of profound resilience, independence, and artistic accomplishment.
David Berger is an author, visual artist, and poet, and was visual arts critic at The Seattle Times. In addition to Persimmon and Frog: My Life and Art (Chin Music Press, 2020), about Fumiko Kimura, he wrote Razor Clams: Buried Treasure of the Pacific Northwest (University of Washington Press, 2017). He lives in Seattle.