Manzanar: Wabi Sabi Exhibit

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View the new Wabi Sabi Exhibit at the Manzanar History Association Bookstore at Manzanar National Historic Site

Wonderful local art work is being shown at the non-profit Manzanar History Association bookstore inside the Visitor Center at Manzanar National Historic Site through New Year’s. The exhibit entitled "Wabi Sabi: Perfection in Imperfection", highlights four Inyo County artists who explore and interpret Japanese design and Manzanar themes. 

Wabi Sabi is a traditional Japanese world view and aesthetic that highlights beauty in imperfection, impermanence and incompletion. It incorporates many elements and concepts and celebrates rusty, decayed, transient and imperfect objects. Local artists explore these themes from different vantage points based on their individual training and influences and heritage, inspired also by Manzanar-related and Japanese artistic themes.

Featured artists from Darwin, Olancha, Independence and Lone Pine include Judyth Greenburgh, with hand-made kaleidoscopes, some with original origami foldings by Noa Lish; Dave Kirk, with original watercolor paintings and matted prints of Manzanar scenes such as a view of the barracks with the Inyo Mountain range; Noa Lish, with hand-folded modular origami ornaments and boxes, and miniature origami inside kaleidoscopes; and Drew Wickman, with hand-made pottery such as traditionally shaped Sake and bowl sets, as well as vases, tea cups and rice bowls inspired by Japanese design elements and traditions. 

All creations will be available for sale at the bookstore. Proceeds will be shared between the artists and the non-profit Manzanar History Association which supports Manzanar National Historic Site’s educational and interpretive programs through a cooperative partnership.

The Visitor Center is free to the public and open daily from 9 am to 4:30 pm. Closed on Christmas Day. The exhibit will run from November 18th through January 15th.

The exhibit inside the Bookstore is sponsored by the non-profit Manzanar History Association, with support by the Manzanar National Historic Site and the Friends of the Eastern California Museum. Manzanar National Historic Site is located at 5001 Highway 395 in Independence, California.

For more information, contact Ursula Esser, Executive Director, Manzanar History Association and Manager of the MHA bookstore, at 760-878-2727 or via email at

Manzanar: Solar Eclipse Viewing Party

Watch Solar Eclipse at Manzanar National Historic Site

Local residents can participate in a close encounter with the Aug. 21 solar eclipse by joining the free eclipse viewing party on the grounds of the Manzanar National Historic Site, located between Independence and Lone Pine.

Most of the excitement surrounding this rare celestial event has centered on areas where the sun will be completely blocked out by the moon, “totality,” in eclipse lingo. Inyo County will experience about 75 percent of “totality,” which will make the eclipse a memorable sight.

The Manzanar viewing party will feature a large telescope trained on the sun and moon, which should provide a unique view of the event. “Eclipse glasses” that will allow people to safely watch the event with the naked eye will be available. A number of volunteers will be on hand to help explain the eclipse and make sure everyone can view it safely. The telescope and designated viewing area will be located near the Manzanar Visitor Center and a short walk from the parking lot. According to Ursula Esser, Business Manager for Manzanar History Association and the Visitor Center Bookstore, “this is a great opportunity to host local school kids and other visitors for this celestial party. We are excited to host the event and hope to offer more educational programs in the future.”

People are asked to gather inside the Manzanar Visitor Center at 9 a.m. to get a short introduction to the basics of the eclipse and a discussion about how the viewing party will proceed.

The eclipse will begin to take place shortly after 9 a.m., but there will be plenty of time to see the slowly unfolding phenomenon. There will also be opportunities for shadow play and similar activities for children and students. The sun and moon will slowly converge, with the “peak” of the eclipse being reached at about 10:24 a.m. This is when about 75 percent of the sun will be “blocked.” Then the two celestiall bodies will proceed on their divergent paths, and won’t be completely separated until about 11:48 a.m.

The viewing party is being sponsored by the non-profit Manzanar History Association (MHA), the
Manzanar National Historic Site and the Friends of the Eastern California Museum, who are providing the telescope.

Eclipse Viewing Party
When: Monday, Aug. 21 (9am-11:30am)
Manzanar National Historic Site, located between Independence and Lone Pine.
Cost: Free
Questions: Ursula Esser, Business Manager, phone: 831-402- 0192, email