Memories To Light

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A Blog Post

New Year Mochi Pounding

It’s almost time to ring in the new year! During this time, we may celebrate our own traditions, possibly something unique to our families, or maybe something our ancestors have been doing for generations.

Within Japanese culture, family and friends gather to pound mochi together, called mochitsuki. This happens less often today, with store-bought mochi being available.

If you’ve seen how traditional homemade mochi is made, then you probably understand why this celebration happens less frequently among families these days. Thanks to amazing home movie footage donated to CAAM’s Memories to Light initiative by local Bay Area painter/artist Hugo Kobayashi, you can see for yourself how mochi is made. Click on the video below.

Kobayashi, a collector of old films and home movies, purchased the film on Ebay for artistic use. When he heard about CAAM’s Memories to Light project, he contacted us and donated the footage to be a part of our growing Memories to Light collection.

Unfortunately, we do not know much about the home movie footage itself. It is another mysterious, unidentified home movie. We guessed that the footage could be from the San Francisco Bay Area, or even the Michigan area, and that it may be from the 1950s. If anyone has information to share, please let us know! We are always hoping to solve the mystery behind orphaned home movies that have become a part of our collection.

Also, Hugo has generously contributed his family’s home movies to CAAM. They were recently digitized and the story about the movies will be posted online in 2016. Happy New Year to all.

—Davin Agatep