Thursday, May 22, 2008



Ginkgo Tree Grows in Brooklyn, the article

Works by students from Explorations Academy and The Berkeley Carroll School

partnership between Japan Society and students at Explorations Academy in the Bronx and The Berkeley Carroll School in Brooklyn.

In this multi-program, high school students from both schools investigated selected cultural, technical and art historical topics related to the Japan Society Gallery exhibition Making a Home: Japanese Contemporary Artists in New York. This included analysis of representations of “home,” a critical examination of references to specific aspects of Japanese culture evidenced in selected works and an exploration of identity construction in the artists and themselves.

Students began their study of Making a Home at school with a preview and introductory discussion of the themes of the exhibition led by Japan Society educators Suzanne de Vegh and Victoria Moller. This was followed by a visit to the Japan Society Gallery where they received a tour of Making a Home with the exhibition’s curator, Eric C. Shiner and participated in facilitated gallery lessons. Hiroshi Sunairi, an artist included in Making a Home visited Berkeley Carroll and Explorations Academy and facilitated a studio art project

In the studio art project each student chose an iconic symbol to represent a personal ideal or aspiration and guided by Hiroshi Sunairi made a clay vessel in that shape. On Tuesday, January 22nd, the students will return to Japan Society to plant the seeds of hibaku trees (seeds from trees that survived the atomic bombing of Hiroshima in 1945) in their vessels as part of a larger long term peace project.

By planting hibaku tree seeds in vessels of their own making, it is our hope that the students will connect the rich symbolism of the hibaku trees (strength, endurance, resiliency, renewal) with the personal power of their own dreams and goals.

Program Participants:

Explorations Academy

Amber Anderso
Ava Loi Anderson
Darrin Barker
Kyle Castro
Tori Edwards
Ashlee Ford
Terry Lawson
Shikeena Palmer
Loreyne Perez
Rafael Pina
Tennelle Swan
Awilda Torres

Maurice Washington

The Berkeley Carroll School

Jason Aerni
Rebecca Brown
Sabrina Greig
Madison Hickson
Jonathan Kohana
Montana Lampert-Hoover
Valerie Schafran
Julia Schechter
Will Trigg
Daniel Wahl

Special thanks to:

Japan Society Gallery
Robert Fish, Director of Education & Lecture Programs, Japan Society
Judith Malo, Japanese Language Teacher, Explorations Academy
Eric C. Shiner, Curator, Making a Home: Japanese Contemporary Artists in New York
Hiroshi Sunairi, Artist; Professor in the Department of Art & Art Professions, NYU

Lorne Swarthout, U.S. History Chair, The Berkeley Carroll School

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Spain: Blanca de la Torre’s Hibaku Sendan has bloomed

Hiroshi, one of your trees has bloomed!!!!! :) -Blanca de la Torre