2021 has been a year of surprising growth. From the start of the pandemic in 2020, JANM went through a period of self-reflection and re-examination. We reinvented ways to engage with schools through virtual tours; we revamped our annual Gala fundraiser to a virtual event, expanding to a national (and perhaps international) audience; and we continued to create relevant public programs online that engaged a broader audience than ever before. And while our store doors remained closed, the JANM online store continued to grow and share its offerings to an even more connected virtual visitor base. Although the temporary halt to our in-person sales took its toll on our revenues, our mission was too important to ignore, and our work continues with the same dedication as always.
In late 2020, the Museum was named one of “America’s Cultural Treasures” by the Ford Foundation. This affirmed our work at JANM as meaningful and necessary. We have opened two new exhibitions in 2021—A Life in Pieces: The Diary and Letters of Stanley Hayami and Miné Okubo’s Masterpiece:The Art of Citizen 13660—and have plans to open one more in early 2022. And, of course, here is our 35th JANM Store Catalog, filled with new museum-created products as well as other fun and educational gifts for all ages. (Who would have thought that we would still be selling masks in this year’s catalog?) Please support our mission and our work by shopping the JANM Store and sharing gifts with friends and family!