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Conversations Beyond the Walls: A Virtual Symposium

The University of Wyoming Art Museum and American Studies Program will host a series of talks, presentations and art activations during October 2020 in conjunction with the exhibition Moving Walls: Heart Mountain Barracks in the Big Horn Basin. The goals of this series are to honor the history of Japanese American peoples incarcerated in Wyoming and beyond, and to integrate arts with complex cultural issues. In doing so, we hope to use an historical event to address contemporary narratives such as global human migrations, dis/placement of peoples, power and control, empathy and belonging, homesteading, resiliency, diversity, and social justice issues of today.

All events are free but registration is required. All events are part of the UWYO SOAR program for students.

Moving Walls Past & Present 

October 1, 5:30 - 7:00 p.m.

This presentation is part of the Wyoming Institute for Humanities Research’s “Think & Drink

Join us to discuss the history of WWII Japanese concentration camps in the US, their connections to other global injustices and atrocities such as the Holocaust, and present-day issues of incarceration, immigration, and equity.

Moderated by Dr. Eric Sandeen, UW Emeritus Professor of American Studies; Heart Mountain
Wyoming Foundation board member



Family Saturday: Tsuru Art Activation

October 3, 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Join us in-person on October 3 and virtually through the duration of the Moving Walls exhibition for a community-wide paper crane folding even with Lena and Aura Newlin. The word "tsuru" is Japanese for crane, a symbol of longevity and peace.

Learn more about Tsuru for Solidarity and check our Facebook page for more. 

Download the lesson materials, crane folding instructions, and youtube playlist for this past event by clicking the button below.


Lunch Hour Conversations with Curators: Moving Walls

October 7, 12:00 - 1:00 p.m.  

Stan Honda, photographer, in conversation with Katie Christensen, UW Art Museum Curator of Education and Andrea Graham, UW American Studies Researcher and folklorist.



Heart Mountain Barracks Revisited

October 8, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m.

Presentation and discussion on the Heart Mountain barracks and the process of their re-use in the Big Horn Basin after the closing of the camp.  


  • Dr. Eric Sandeen, UW Emeritus Professor of American Studies & Heart Mountain Wyoming Foundation board member 
  • Mary Humstone, UW American Studies Researcher, Historic Preservation Specialist 
  • Rowene Weems, Former Director, Homesteader Museum, Powell, WY 
  • Andrea Graham, UW American Studies Researcher, Folklorist 


Moving Walls Film Screening and Discussion

October 15, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m. 

Join us for a screening of Moving Walls by filmmaker Sharon Yamato.  

The film will be followed by a conversation with Sharon Yamato and photographer Stan Honda.



No-No Boy: A Multimedia Presentation by Julian Saporiti

October 22, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m.

No-No Boy will perform several songs written about Heart Mountain gathered from research and oral histories. Interspersed in this multimedia presentation will be the short film For Joy which looks at the jazz band which formed in the camp followed by a conversation with songwriter Julian Saporiti.  

Julian Saporiti is a who earned his MA in American Studies from Wyoming and is finishing his PhD in American Studies at Brown University. His multimedia project No-No Boy has received national critical acclaim for its blend of scholarship and art.



Storytelling for a Better World

October 29, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m.

Known as "Mr. Heart Mountain," join Bacon Sakatani for stories about life at Heart Mountain, along with Executive Director Dakota Russell and board member Aura Newlin for a history of the Heart Mountain Foundation and Interpretive Center.


Additional Exhibitions and Resources


Heart Mountain Barracks Revisited:

An exhibit on the re-use of the barracks from the Heart Mountain Camp by homesteaders in the Big Horn Basin. Researched and produced by the UW American Studies Program and the Homesteader Museum in Powell. On display in the hallway by Special Collections in Coe Library, October 1-31, 2020.


Related Digital Exhibitions: 

American Heritage Center: Heart Mountain Relocation Center: Wyoming's Japanese Internment Camp


Additional Resources:

Heart Mountain LibGuide

Japanese American Confinement Collections

Heart Mountain Resources

Japanese American Memorial Pilgrimages

Thank you to our sponsors:

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Art Museum

Hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

Closed Sunday & Monday

Admission: Free

Centennial Complex

2111 East Willett Drive

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307) 766-6622


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