Yesterday, another teacher and I took an opportunity to visit the Wing Luke Museum which was my first visit. The museum and the surrounding International District is a wonderful city resource and would make for great field trips. We went on a tour that took us to the preserved hotel rooms upstairs. I would definitely recommend this tour to anyone interested in our city’s history and if Vee is giving the tour, she is a hoot. She said things like, “I knew Garry when he was in diapers, and if weren’t for Mona’s charm, he would never have gotten the votes in Eastern Washington to become Governor.” She also reminded me of the difficult and racist obstacles asians faced such as the Chinese Exclusion Act and the internment camps for the Japanese during WWII. Some of the artifacts demonstrated this discrimination. After serving, for example, Asian men weren’t allowed to join the local Legion, so they had to form their own division.
Their featured temporary exhibit was great. It showcased the paintings and collections of artist Roger Shimomura. His art comments on the racist stereotypes of asians through history and he has a collection of political cartoons and propaganda material from war days that seem to inspire his work. Pretty powerful stuff, but probably not for kids.