ART 307 OIL PAINTING I
PROF. CONSTANCE KOCS
(untitled) Coincidentally, when we were assigned this project, my main picture inspiration popped up on a historical society Facebook post along with an article about it. In the article they wrote about the building of the local town to house the railway workers. “At its peak, the mill and associated mill town included 250 homes, a hotel, community center, 50-bed hospital, barber shop, grade school, boarding house for single men and eight bunkhouses built for Japanese workers....” Nothing in this story addressed the boarding houses for single men vs. the bunkhouses for the Japanese workers, as though there was a difference between them. And growing up in the area I can tell you that the story of these Japanese workers has been almost completely erased from the local history and culture. I intended to juxtapose the pride in the railroad demonstrated by this monument against the shame of the systematic racism of the era through today that allowed the contribution and existence of the Japanese workers to be buried and glossed over.