Jenny Goto and the EBCLA historical project

Show #2 of 2.

I put on our church’s 2nd art showcase the week after the Vine. We exhibited commissioned work from modern artist Jenny Goto. Jenny used to go to Evergreen years ago… she was our artist-in-residence at one time and came up with many beautiful pieces for our church. She has been working on this series of work for years… researching photos and historical facts to display 8 pieces depicting the history of our church through its 85 year history.

We rebuilt and re-imagined the cafe at our church to become a new gallery space. I love it. It looks so much better than what we had before. Take a look at the gallery and Jenny’s amazing pieces…

My family and other guests looking at the art. My parents were taking care of my grandma and my cousin Jo that day so they brought them to the show. Grandma was interested for about the first 10 minutes. Haha.

Marian Sunabe put together a phenomenal spread for the refreshments. The food and drinks really made it feel like a professional art gallery event…

Cheese, fruit, and other goodies... even eggrolls!! All the candles and decorations were Marian's touch. Nice! That's Jenny in the black dress!
She even did a candy bar! Did I mention that Marian is also an artist? It shows in her attention to aesthetic detail. Everything looks so classy!
This was not for communion. Haha. Some were a tad concerned about serving wine at church. I couldn't imagine a showcase like this without it, so I gave the go-ahead. I think it was perfect for the show!

Here are some of my favorite pieces…

This one was a depiction of the 40's in Evergreen's history. It was really cool because Jenny used real soil from Poston internment camp in Arizona. My family was sent there during the Japanese evacuation in WWII (as was Jenny Goto's). We asked my grandma if she remembered Poston. She had no idea what we were talking about. haha. Oh, grandma...
This was a depiction of the 90's. I started coming to Evergreen in 94 and have been here ever since. I like this one because it just feels like the 90s at EBCLA. Jenny does everything in her paintings with purpose (so everything symbolizes something and has a lot of meaning). But even if I don't know what it means, to me... this just feels like 90's EBCLA. Me likey.

Jenny also came to our Vine gallery the week before and wanted to re-purpose the pallet walls for her show. Together we came up with this configuration to show the EBCLA historical timeline, historical photos, and some of her sketches and works-in-progress.

We had a really good showing. I estimate about 100 people came by that night.
A pic of one of the Sunday School classes from the 50's at Evergreen. This pic is special to me because it has my grandma Marion (not the same grandma that was at the show) in it. My auntie Mitsi is the woman in the top left corner. My grandma is in the dark dress standing to the right of her. I like that my family has history at my church. It makes working here all the more special.
These are Jenny's works in progress. They're made of Kumohada Japanese paper, silver, and oyster shell. I also really like this display b/c we got to use one of the 25 shoplights I bought for the Vine. This light-pallet combo was my original design for the Vine displays.

It was really cool working with Jenny for the show. I really hope I get to work with her on something in the future. In a few weeks, we’re both going to see Makoto Fujimura at Azusa Pacific University for a dinner reception. “Mako” as Jenny calls him, was commissioned to do some amazing pieces commemorating the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible. He’s this crazy talented modern artist who taught Jenny how to do what she does! He might be one of the only people on the planet who has a Phd in painting. If I can take pics, I’ll blog about that in a few weeks…

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