In fact, the painting is a daring parody of the picture of Emanuel Leutze celebrating the historically significant event of the American Revolution. The original painting depicts crossing the Delaware on the Christmas night of 1776 led by George Washington.
Conducting a little research on the background of the current painting, one is able to single out the key strategy deployed in it. The principal strategy the author uses is appropriation. Appropriation is understood as taking (involving) an already preexisting symbol, object or an artwork into the new one applying no or little transformation. Appropriation uses the images that already exist and considered in isolation from them in order to create a new concept behind them. “Shimomura Crossing the Delaware” complies with this definition as it is an ironical reconsideration of the already existing object (the work of art).
The concept of the painting is altered by the author in order to create the strong allusion to racial and ethnic issues in a form of a parody or joke. The principal difference lies in the fact that Shimomura made Asians – namely, samurai - the main characters of the painting. In other words, this is an American historical painting vested in Japanese guise. This solution was dictated be the idea of illustrating the race issue and the problem of Japanese Americans’ place in American society.
The picture created by Shimomura preserves the idea and composition, yet is a parody bearing a peculiar style of the painter.
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The present article concerns the biography of Roger Shimomura and his works of art. Reportedly, among the 20th century’s artists of non-citizen of American descent Roger Shimomura holds a remarkable place with his peculiar style and general ironical tone of his works. …
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