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WATARI DORI: A Bird of Passage
Biography: Linda Ohama


Since the early 1970's third generation (sansei) Japanese Canadian artist and filmmaker, Linda Ohama has worked as an exhibiting visual artist and most recently as a documentary filmmaker.

Exhibitions include, Jack Darcus and Linda Ohama (1988), at the Surrey Art Gallery, Visions of Power (1991 Earth Spirit Festival) at the Harbourfront Centre, Toronto and Memories and Desires: Voices of Eleven Women of Culture (1992) at the Vancouver Art Gallery.

In August 1991, Linda began production on her first independent film production, The Last Harvest, a one hour documentary relating to both her Japanese Canadian heritage and her life growing up on a prairie family potato farm. The film received several awards in the international film festival circuit and national broadcasts in both Canada and Japan.

With her production company, Harvest Productions Ltd., Linda is currently involved in production and developing several new independent projects.

Besides her work in visual arts and film, she currently sits as a director on a number of boards including Moving Images (formerly Canadian Filmmakers Distributions West), Uzume Taiko Society (advancement of the Japanese drum or taiko as a living cultural art form), and the National Nikkei Heritage Cultural Society (establishment of a new Japanese Canadian community and cultural centre housing the national Nikkei museum of Canada).

Linda is married to artist/filmmaker Jack Darcus and mother of three daughters Kris, Kimi and Caitlin.

"Ohama's work alludes to our relationship with nature....they declare her attraction to dual (East/West) sensibilities, and reveal the signs of struggle in every decision, in every capitulation to a learned, visual solution." (Visions of Power catalogue, Bryce Kanbara curator and writer)

"begin with a 'picture bride' in a new found wilderness filled with salmon-haunted rivers of the pacific littoral. add a ravaged dream of a gold mountain two world wars & unspoken nighmares of bereftments. begin. again. let the years swiftly pass. let them pass into the shape of a grown woman who carries an image of her grandmother embedded in her... the two of them speak a single tongue, one that would tear away, all the abysmal years of silences." ("celebration of Ohama, the artist", Roy Kiyooka, poet, writer, artist)

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