The Tokyo National Museum is the oldest and largest museum in Japan, and
its collection preserves over 110,000 art and archaeological objects from
Japan and other parts of Asia.
(Fugaku36kei,at kanagawa; Katsushika Hokusai)
Since its founding in 1897, the Kyoto National Museum-located in the early
capital of Japan with its long history and rich culture has enjoyed many
visitors. The cultural arts that flourished here spread to the rest of
Japan, creating artistic expressions often defined as "Japanese."
In this sense, most of what is called Japanese art and culture are closely
connected to Kyoto. It is, thus, my wish that our Museum, while taking
root in this historical city, will continue its endeavor in presenting
(Fujing-Raijing-zu byobu; Tawaraya Soutatsu)
The museum's group of ancient Chinese bronzes is world famous. Other well-known
works include Chinese Song/Yuan period paintings and calligraphy such as
Fishing Village at Dusk by Muxi, and Quail attributed to LI Anzhong. Japanese
religious paintings are well represented by such Buddhist works as Dainichi
Nyorai (Mahavairocana) and the Kongokai (Diamond) Mandala, and the famed
Shinto painting, Nachi Waterfall. The museum has extensive holdings of
paintings and ceramics from after the fifteenth century and has become
best known for the folding-screen painting Irises.
(Irises; Ogata Korin.)
The Bridgestone Museum of Art has a collection of around 1,600 works of
art, chiefly Impressionists, Post-Impressionists and twentieth-century
(Saltimbanque Seated with Arms Crossed; Pablo Picasso 1923)
The Idemitsu Collection includes representative works of Eastern Asian
antiques, gathered over some 70 years by Sazo Idemitsu. Thier collection
includes Japanese painting (yamato-e, rimpa, bunjin-ga, ukiyo-e, and works by Sengai and modern painter Kosugi Hōan, etc.) and calligraphy,
East Asian ceramics (Chinese, Japanese, and Korean wares, and works of
modern potter, Itaya Hazan, etc.). The collection also has works of Western
painters (Georges Rouault and Sam Francis). The total works number some
fifteen thousand items, including two National Treasures and fifty-one
Important Cultural Properties.
(Ko-Kutani plate; 17th century)
In 1930, to commemorate Kojima Torajiro, a Western-style painter who died
the previous year, Kurashiki entrepreneur, Ohara Magosaburo, founded the
Ohara Museum of Art. This private museum, featuring Western art, is the
oldest in Japan.
Magosaburo, well-known as a collector of Japanese art, highly respected Torajiro's talent and his humble attitude towords art, and sent Torajiro to Europe three times. Torajiro studied art in Europe and, at the same time, with Magosaburo's superb European artwork, choosing pieces through the sense of beauty that he possessed as a Japanese artist.
(Land scape; Paul Cezanne 1887)
I introduce you to what a wonderful pottery and porcelain world.