Giant Robot Store and GR2 News

This isn’t a Top Ten list like “Best Concert, Best Movie, or Best Toy”. It’s a list that’s as important and there are highlights in them all, but by no means is it a Top Ten of anything. They’re just important as everything else – family, friends, and so on. Maybe I’ll try and turn out a list that’s more like that…


 We painted the mural on the wall. That alone was an 11 hour project. 


Zen Garage – The year started off great with the Zen Garage art opening just a few days before the new year. Yet, the actual New Year’s Day kicked off with the Oshogatsu program at JANM. It was motor vehicles including the Giant Robot Scion Car I designed but also custom motorcycles and the now vintage David Choe Scion. Thanks to Len Higa and Shinya Kimura for jumping on board. The year began with a GR show in a museum – it’s a great start with you get to do a project with friends, new friends, and a place like JANM. Collaboration can be more fun than doing something alone.


 It’s great when artists install their own work. 


James Jean Art Show – Aside from it being one of the greater or even greatest art shows of the year, it also indelibly marked the night that the earthquake struck Japan. I recall, it was at the after party, the twitter messages were beginning. An 8.9 quake? The thought of a giant quake was one thing, yes there would be lives lost and yes a lot of damage, but less than an hour later, the Tsunami hit the shores and that’s when the things got real, it became internet news for days straight.

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There are things to do in Hawaii aside from the early morning beach visits. It’s food. Ramen Nakamura, or NakamuRamen or as a friend pointed out, RameNakamura and Waiola Shave Ice with Tamlyn Tomita.



That’s Oxtail Ramen below. It’s coma inducing. Proceed at your own risk. It costs $13, a bit much, but that’s Waikiki for you. Yes those are dried garlic pieces.



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Hawaii from above. Flying in, it’s great to see the green hue of the water. It’s like visiting another country. I often refer to the continental US as America, but then what’s Hawaii? It’s a bad habit, but it’s that different. In fact, Asians can often grow up here without the same racism that exists in “America”. I’m here for HIFF, the Hawaii International Film Festival where I’m on the jury for best feature film. Here’s a few highlights from day 1. Of course, jumping into the water early in the morning before most are awake and seeing the sunrise, is the way to go. I do this daily.

There’s Goh Nakamura, Anderson Le, Gary Chou, and David Boyle. Their screening took place sunday.

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Eugene, OR– The DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon opened on April 29th for the sixth edition, and Goh Nakamura and I are attending to show “Surrogate Valentine.” It’s my third time attending the festival, and it’s fun visiting with old friends and making some new ones. I’ve also been able to catch up on some movies! The Centerpiece screening this year was “The House of Suh,” a gripping documentary produced and directed by Iris Shim. The film tells the story of Andrew Suh, who is currently serving a 100 year sentence for murdering his sister’s fiancee in a much publicized case that scandalized Chicago in the mid 1990′s. Through extraordinary interviews with Andrew, his relatives, and even the brother of victim Robert O’Dubaine, Shim deconstructs the crime and explores the fractured family relationships that may have shaped Andrews eventual transformation into a murderer. Andrew’s sister Catherine Suh does not appear on camera but haunts every frame of the film. The method by which she convinced her brother to murder Robert O’Dubaine is not revealed until the final third of the film, and I wouldn’t dare talk about it here…but I was struck by the fact that Andrew Suh still seems convinced that his sister would never lie to him. I was also very moved and fascinated by the appearance of Kevin Koron, the victim’s brother. The director mentioned in the Q & A that Koron’s participation in the film was understandably met with great resistance by the rest of the victim’s family, but his personal testimony is crucial to establishing who Robert O’Dubaine was. The portrait that emerges, while secondary to the film’s overall focus on the Suh family, is sad and undeniably moving. “The House of Suh” has been acquired by MSNBC FIlms and will be broadcast later this year in a truncated 44-minute version. See the 90 minute version if possible, but the story is worth watching in any available format. \”The House of Suh\” Trailer
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