Norm Masaji Ibuki

Writer Norm Masaji Ibuki lives in Oakville, Ontario. He has written extensively about the Canadian Nikkei community since the early 1990s. He wrote a monthly series of articles (1995-2004) for the Nikkei Voice newspaper (Toronto) which chronicled his experiences while in Sendai, Japan. Norm now teaches elementary school and continues to write for various publications. 

Updated August 2014

culture en

Nishimura Sisters: Before, During, and After Tashme - Part 2

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YELLOW CHERRIES/YELLOW PERIL?!

I am intrigued by the story of post-internment Ontario Japanese Canadian (JC) history in the booklet you wrote. This is a story that isn’t often heard about.

MBG (Miike Barbara Gravlin): I originally conceived of a child’s storybook based on my carefree experiences in Cedar Springs, Ontario. My childhood on the second farm was mainly happy, full of wide-eyed wonder and curiosity. I grew up reading Dick and Jane, their dog Spot, kids books. This didn’t reflect our family lifestyle. The concept for my child’s book was first called ...

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Nishimura Sisters: Before, During, and After Tashme - Part 1

“The exhibition title evolved from Sisters to Tashme Sisters because both of them began belated examinations of their origins in an internment camp and the significance of their upbringing in a post-war JC family. However, with the exception of a couple of paintings Barb produced for this exhibition, there is no evidence of this background in their bodies of work. For me, this exclusion deepens the fascination with the richly dissimilar paintings they make.”

— Bryce Kanbara, Tashme Sisters exhibition curator & owner of You Me Gallery in Hamilton, ON

“Sunshine Valley,” sounds like a place that should possess idyllic, pastoral splendour ...

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Power of Our Stories

Vancouver’s 1907 Anti-Asian Riots Revisited - Part 2

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For those who may not be familiar with it, can you give a summary of the events leading up to the 1907 Riot? What happened and what was the aftermath? Didn’t things get worse after that for Asians? What about the racists?

The 360 Video Walking Tour of the 1907 Anti-Asian Riots traces the history and route of the mob that attacked the Chinese Canadian and Japanese Canadian communities following the demonstration and parade organized by the Asiatic Exclusion League in Vancouver.

The 1907 Anti-Asian Riots in Vancouver is one of the most significant events in ...

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community en

Power of Our Stories

Vancouver’s 1907 Anti-Asian Riots Revisited - Part 1

“Nothing could be more systematic than the determination with which the mob picked out Japanese and Chinese windows and spared those right adjoining if they were those of whites. On Columbia Avenue, for example, all the Chinese windows were broken and those of two white real estate brokers were left whole.”

The Vancouver Daily World newspaper reporting about the Powell Street Riot in 1907

Prior to making my first visit to the Powell Street Festival in August, I noticed several events in the program published in Geppo that piqued my interest, among them being the 360 Riot Walk that advertised ...

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Canadian Nikkei Artist

David Hayashida on his first visit to BC, euphemisms and life on "The Rock" - Part 2

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Can you talk about how your career as an artist began?

I am turning 60 this year and it is my first piece on JCs. If Dr. Heather Read had not very kindly invited me to turn my decades old idea into reality, it might never have existed outside of my head. Also, my younger sister Charissa Alain Lilly (also an artist) just passed away and that difficult event has in many ways pushed me to want to do more JC pieces before the window closes on my opportunity to make an artistic contribution to the racism ...

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