The Gail Project at UCSC

"The Gail Project is a collaborative, international public history project that explores the founding years of the American military occupation of Okinawa. The project is inspired by a collection of photos taken in Okinawa in 1952-53 by an American Army Captain: Charles Eugene Gail.  ... faculty, artists and undergraduate students at the University of California, Santa Cruz, are developing a traveling exhibition of Gail's photographs with an accompanying digital archive that is comprised of the photos, key texts and documents, oral histories from both American and Okinawan voices, as well as undergraduate student research and writing."

Mariko Mori Plans a Futuristic Island Earthwork on Miyako Island

"In what may be her most ambitious undertaking yet, Mori — who previously showed a pod-like sculptural environment, Wave UFO, at the 2005 Venice Biennale — plans to build a solar monument on Miyako Island, located 180 miles off the coast of the Japanese island of Okinawa. The piece, titled Primal Rhythm, will place a towering column and a glowing sphere on separate rock mounds in the island’s bay."
Posted in Art

Uchinanchu Festival 2011

Although the Uchinanchu Taikai gathering of thousands of Okinawans from around the world does not officially start until Wednesday, October 12, the festivities are well under way with the Naha Festival. Today is the Naha Ozunahiki or Tug of War with the world's largest rope.

Japan 8.9 quake and tsunami

I just spoke to a friend on Okinawa about the effects of the earthquake to the island. There is no significant damage. The tsunami reaching Okinawa was very minor. Everyone is of course worried about the devastation on the mainland of Japan.
Here is the link to the Google translation of the Ryukyu Shimpo Newpaper

Nuchi du Takara: Lessons from the Battle of Okinawa

Nuchi du Takara: Lessons from the Battle of Okinawa.
Exhibition on view January 15 through August 14, 2011
Location: NJAHS' Peace Gallery 1684 Post St., San Francisco Japantown
Nuchi du Takara (translation: Life Itself is Our Treasure) will share the story of the Battle of Okinawa from an Okinawan point of view and honor the resilient spirit of the survivors who went on to rebuild their lives and create a legacy of peace. The centerpiece of the exhibition will be a re-creation of a cave similar to the ones that Okinawan civilians sought refuge from the fierce fighting known as the "Typhoon of Steel."

Afro-Okinawan Family Network, grits and sushi

I had the pleasure of meeting Mitzi at the Lessons From the Battle of Okinawa symposium held this past weekend in San Francisco. Mitzi is a PhD candidate in the Anthropology Dept at Berkeley. You can read about being blackanese and the Afro-Okinawan Family Network on her website If you are interested in biracial, happa Okinawa Japanese stuff, gritsandsushi is a great starting point.

2011 Uchinanchu Festival

The 5th annual Uchinanchu Taikai Festival is going to be on Oct. 13 - 17. There will be an opening ceremony on the 12th. The opening and closing ceremonies will be held at the Naha Municipal Sports Stadium.

The main events this year will be 1) the global student forum, 2) junior study tours 3) the uchinanchu one world movement and 4) homestay.

We'll try to post more detailed info later.