Both of my parents died several years ago. I could never forget the emotional rollercoaster my sister and I rode together while going through their stuff, everything accumulated spanning over three generations in an old two-story house my grandfather built. From a drawer in my mom’s bedroom, I found a stack of telegrams she received when she turned twenty, which is a monumental rite of passage in Japan. Some were from her older aunts and uncles. Not only they congratulated her becoming an adult, but also said, “shikkari oyarinasai” which roughly means, now brace yourself, work hard, be the best you can and make your life right.” Hard work is so valued in Japanese culture. Perseverance is admirable and it is the epitome of Japanese spirit that enabled the country to rise up from the charred rubble after World War II.
In this current, ever-shrinking world, powerful corporations are destroying and taking over traditional crafts and artisans that are unique to each region. Delicate and sensitive culture is slowly being erased by choosing convenience and speed. Is everywhere in the world going to look the same by this gentrification? Although advancing technology is inevitable and necessary in some ways, there are always irreversible effects. My project is to “remember” where I came from and pay homage to the past generations that brought us all here.