In 1942, Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, sending over 120,000 US citizens of Japanese ancestry into internment camps. Households along the western coastline were moved abruptly into often stark and unforgiving desert landscapes, forced to leave their personal possessions behind. My textile collection, 1942
, explores Japanese American identity through this troubled history. Each garment is patterned on historically accurate western culture clothing of the 1940s, but incorporates the aesthetics of Japanese Boro and Kintsugi techniques, which are, significantly, both mending practices. The lining is made from UV printed photos by Dorothea Lange who documented the internment camps for the US government. I used raw indigo denim for the body and screen printed scrap denim for the Boro patchwork. The gold brocade is topstitched to echo the Kintsugi practice of mending what has been broken, and underscores the possibility of creating beauty out of a fractured past.