“Come From the Shadows”
Art Exhibition In Memory of Comfort Women at the Gallery 1&9
January 5 - 22, 2012 Reception: 2-5 pm, Saturday, Jan. 7th, 2012
The term “Comfort Women” is a euphemism for women who were abducted, coerced, and deceived by the Japanese Imperial Government in the years before and during WWII and forced into sexual slavery to serve Japanese Soldiers. These women and young girls, many only in their early teens, were mostly Korean, but also Chinese, Dutch and Filipino women. An estimated 200,000 girls were forced into these comfort stations, and at the war's end, most were massacred. Although some survived, as of December 2011, only 63 survivors remain to tell the horrors of what Comfort Women endured during the war and the decades that followed.
In 2008, Steve Cavallo exhibited a series of watercolor paintings depicting the inhumanity and atrocities of wartime crimes; among these paintings were the stories of the Comfort Women. During that exhibit, he was asked many times “What good could it do to bring up these old stories from the past?” But, now as 2012 approaches, between protesters, human rights advocates, politicians, writers, and artists, many advances have been made to bring these women's testimonies to light and to help them receive the apology they have long sought after. There are now memorials dedicated to these victims in the USA as well as in Seoul, Korea; the Korean President has asked Japan for an official apology, and South Korea is rewriting history books to include this in their account.
On Wednesday, December 14th, 2011 the 1,000th consecutive comfort women protest was held outside the Japanese Embassy in Seoul. This is the longest running consecutive protest in history. Comfort Women have been asking for an official apology from Japan since 1991 when the protests began. In both Korea and New York, groups gathered to support these women through protests, panel discussions, and press conferences. Steve Cavallo and Shin-Young An exhibited a series of paintings on Comfort Women: "Come From the Shadows" at the Kupferberg Holocaust Center in Queens, where two former Comfort Women travelled to New York from Korea to speak about their stories of the atrocities that took place during WWII both in Europe and in Asia along with two Holocaust survivors.
Please contact Steve Cavallo for further inquires for the exhibition. 201–925–8232, or