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The Matsuda Family

Created in 2018, The Matsuda Family series is an illustrated narrative on cut metal panels based on Mary Matsuda Gruenewald’s memoir Looking Like the Enemy: My Story of Imprisonment in Japanese-American Internment Camps.  A story shared by Miyoko Matsuda, Mary’s sister-in-law, is also included.  The six panels show moments in the life of Mary, her brother Yoneichi and their mother.  Following them from their internment at Tule Lake to their return to Vashon Island, my hope is that the story of the Matsuda family illustrates Hikikomogomo (Joy and Heartache).

The Matsuda Family series was on view at the Vashon Heritage Museum from April 6, 2018 to May 12, 2019 during Hikikomogomo (Joy and Heartache), an exhibit about the Japanese American experience on Vashon Island, WA.

The Matsuda Family will be permanently installed along a walking trail at the Matsuda Farm of the Vashon-Maury Island Land Trust as a visual educational tool for visitors.  It is currently in a temporary installation on the property.

The Matsuda Family series was generously supported by the Vashon Heritage Museum, 4Culture, and Bob Powell of

Additional support provided by Vermont Studio Center and the Wing Luke Museum.


Invaluable research and support by Miyoko Matsuda and Bruce Haulman.


Thank you to Mary Matsuda Gruenewald and the Matsuda and Gruenewald families for sharing their story.

Installation Views: Vashon Heritage Museum, Vashon, WA. April 2018 to May 2019
Installation Views: Vashon-Maury Island Land Trust - Matsuda Farm, Vashon, WA.
(Matsuda Farm is artwork's permanent home; currently a temporary installation set-up as trail work is completed.)
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