“While interned in Idaho at Camp Minidoka during World War II, Japanese-American architect George Nakashima met master Japanese carpenter Gentaro Hikogawa. Using wood scraps and desert plants, they worked together to improve their stark living conditions. Nakashima, who had studied architecture at MIT and worked for Czech-American architect Antonin Raymond, also learned some traditional Japanese techniques, such as selecting timber and using butterfly joints.
“He learned to improvise,” says his daughter, Mira Nakashima, who still has a small toy box he made for her at the camp. “You
couldn’t draw something and then go buy materials. It was the other way around; the material came first.” That resourcefulness laid the groundwork for a prolific practice in New Hope, Pennsylvania…”