Topaz Internment Camp

Topaz Internment Camp

Artist: Connie Rohman

Title: Topaz Internment Camp

Attribution: "Topaz Internment Camp" 2021 Connie Rohman

Year: 2021

Materials: Vintage Kimoro fabric, artist dyed fabric, cotton batting, cotton backing, thread

Dimensions: 48" high x 52" wide

Image Statement: My mother was a teacher at the WWII Japanese concentration camp at Topaz, Utah. This piece is from a map that details how the Topaz camp was divided into blocks which held 250-300 people in 12 barracks, with a mess hall and latrine. The camp was surrounded by barbed wire fences and watch towers. The red lines reference the Japanese idea of kintsugi, which treats breakage and repair as part of the history of an object, rather than something to disguise. The red lines represent how the Japanese internees’ lives were indelibly shattered when they were imprisoned in the camps, and their resilience in the struggle to put their lives back together after they were released.