Japanese internment mail bag, circa 1942
displayed as wall art
I own a still life painting of an ink bottle that is wonky in a way I adore. Painted in 1950 by the wife of a revered designer, I imagine that she carved a space for herself and her creativity, despite the shadow of her husband's fame and talent. The painting is imperfect, the drawing is clumsy with shadows so rigid they could have been stenciled. B. said that it was so 'off', surely I must be in love with the 'idea' of it, the 'imagined story' and not the actual art. Maybe so.
This Japanese mail bag has graphic appeal, no doubt. That it was used for mail in and out of the Japanese internment camps adds somber historical impact. So much so that it becomes bigger and more memorable than just a graphic wall piece.