Emily Hanako Momohara opens a new exhibition Islands, this Friday at PAC Gallery in East Walnut Hills. These works are based in the artist’s recent trip to Okinawa, Japan, to research her family history, where she discovered that many of the stories passed among her relatives were shaped and embellished by the teller. They aren’t fantasies, per say, as much as fragmented, alternative readings.
The 13 new photographs on view share that sense of displaced reality, with views of darkened, foggy landscapes and vacant interiors. In “Island 4” a hand holds onto a handle attached to a grassy landmass; it surrealistically looks like a fan of Asian design. Mysterious symbolism abounds, and one senses that Momohara has become another storyteller within her clan, isolating details of her journey and opening them up so that the viewer will mold them further into stories of their own. Opening reception Friday from 6-9 p.m. Exhibition continues through Sept. 17.
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