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  • CRA/LA’S commitment to public art began over 40 years ago.
  • Over 200 art projects in 21 redevelopment project areas have been completed to date.
  • California Plaza developers met their art requirement by building a $23 million facility for the Museum of Contemporary Art.

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 \\Commonspot\internet-site\images\bullet1 Art Projects

Nancy Uyemura

Project Area: Little Tokyo
Project: Casa Heiwa
Project Location: 231 E. Third Street
Project Type: Developer


A mixed media sculptural piece in the shape of a fan forms the entrance to the building. Photo images depict a personal journey of the spirit and show family and relationships in balance.  In 2007, this piece underwent minor restoration as deteriorated aluminum panels were replaced with more permanent porcelain enamel panels.

At the February 2008 re-dedication ceremony, Nancy Uyemura shared her poem, "Thoughts on 'Harmony.'"

                            “Harmony” is about the everyday events of
                                   our lives and the memories that remain.

                             A scrapbook of dreams – and like a dream
                              the images come from the everyday – the
                             miraculous in the mundane and it is only a
                                                               memory that remains.

                  What happens when the memory begins to fade?

                                                            What do we have left?

                          What happens when our goals are forgotten
                                                            – what do we do then?

                         Why is it that some images remain vivid in our
                                       minds while others leave us quickly?

                                                It is the randomness of the life.

                               Community, family, friends and strangers,
                           remind us of the imperfectness of humanity,
                                                         and the swiftness of life.

                                  If there is a message here, it is to enjoy,
                                   appreciate each moment, for it is all too
                                   fleeting, like the seasons and the wind.

                         A wave of a fan controlled by a human hand
                                 makes you feel for a moment, as though
                 you can control the wind, that you can control life.

                             Maybe you cannot control life, but you can
                               and do make a difference, one movement
                            at a time. Your life makes a difference, one
                                                    thought, one action at a time.

                                    sometimes we can control the dreams

                                                              other times we cannot

                             sometimes we choose to go a certain way

                      and other times we are swept away in a cloud

Nancy Uyemura's Harmony at Casa Heiwa

Artist Profile

Asian-American artist Nancy Uyemura was born in Santa Monica, California.  She received her BA from the University of California, Los Angeles; her MS in Education from the University of Southern California; and continued her education at the Otis College of Art and Design as well as a year of studying in Japan.  The artist has exhibited her work extensively in the United States and Asia at the Japanese American National Museum, Los Angeles; Riverside Art Museum; California State University at Northridge; Pyong Taek City Museum, Pyong Taek, Korea; and the Osaka Triennale, Osaka.  Uyemura lives and works in Los Angeles.