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Thursday, April 01, 2010

Hiroshima Children’s Drawings: Finding Hope in War’s Aftermath

After Sixty Years a Story of Hope & War Comes to Light
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Smith Farm Center announces  the opening of Hiroshima Children’s Drawings: Finding Hope in War’s Aftermath, Presented by All Souls Church, Unitarian in celebration of the National Cherry Blossom Festival 2010.

March 27 to April 24, 2010
Opening Reception: Saturday, April 3, 2010, 4 to 6pm, beginning in The Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery with a Japanese dance performance by the Kodomo Dancers and proceeding to the upstairs gallery for snacks and refreshments.

In November 1946, then Senior Minister Rev. A. Powell Davies delivered the widely circulated sermon, Lest the Living Forget, denouncing a party at which military officers rejoiced over a cake shaped like the atomic cloud seen over Hiroshima.  The bold sermon text came to the attention of an aide to General MacArthur in Japan, Dr. Howard Bell, who wrote to Davies describing the plight of the 400 children at the Honkawa School, and asked about “the possibility of putting on a ‘desk cleaning project’ that would yield substantial numbers of pencil stubs, used erasers, Crayons and notebooks? Are war memories still too fresh?”  In response, the Children at All Souls Church, Unitarian collected over half-a-ton of school supplies and shipped it to the Honkawa and Fukouromachi Schools in Hiroshima and the nearby Ninoshima Orphanage.  Several months later, the children in Hiroshima sent back 48 watercolor and crayon drawings that reflected not the devastation of war, but vibrant depictions of the abundant life they hoped for. Unlike other historical materials depicting the events of Hiroshima, the 18 exquisite and hopeful images on display tell the story of healing and reconciliation between once war-torn enemies. Later this summer the collection will travel back to Hiroshima, where the original artists will be reunited with their childhood artworks after 62 years.

The exhibition runs in the Upstairs gallery from March 27 to April 24 -- Upstairs Gallery Hours: Monday-Friday 11AM-5PM & Saturday 11AM-3PM, except on April 10th & 17th when the space will be closed for special programs

The Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery at Smith Farm Center
1632 U Street, NW
Washington, DC 20009
202.483.8600
www.smithfarm.com/gallery
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Smith Farm Center for Healing and the Arts is a Washington, DC nonprofit organization grounded in the profound belief that each person has tremendous innate abilities to heal in the face of life’s challenges, Smith Farm’s mission is to develop and promote proven healing practices that explore physical, emotional, and mental resources that lead to life affirming changes. Programs and exhibitions in the Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery celebrate and stimulate the dynamic creative resources that contribute to health and wellness in each of us.

The National Cherry Blossom Festival is Washington DC's and the nation's greatest springtime celebration. The 2010 Festival is March 27 – April 11, and features signature events, daily cultural performances, art exhibits, sport competitions and more. The National Cherry Blossom Festival celebrates the 98th anniversary of the gift of the cherry blossom trees and the enduring friendship between the citizens of the United States and Japan. For schedules and information visit www.nationalcherryblossomfestival.org or call the Festival hotline at (877) 44BLOOM.

UPDATE:
Sunday, August 8, 2010 at 10:00 a.m.
@
Unitarian Universalist Church of Rockville
100 Welsh Park Drive
Rockville, MD 20850
Phone: 301-762-7666
 
The story of the Hiroshima Children's Drawings is one of a long, terrible war ending and, in its aftermath, two small groups building a new world through a gesture of reconciliation. A docent from All Souls Unitarian Church in Washington, DC, will present some of the drawings and speak about their legacy. Steve Lapham and Andy Zatman will be the musicians.

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