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Special Exhibition

The Living Treasures of France

ISIS (In collaboration with Môdjari), Michel Heurtault, 2013 (Private Collection) (c) Greg GONZALEZ

Hyokeikan   :September 12, 2017 (Tue) - November 26, 2017 (Sun)

Modeled on the Japanese certification of “Living National Treasure,” the French equivalent, called "Maître d' Art" or “Master of Art,” was established in 1994 by the Ministère de la Culture et de la Communication, the ministry in charge of cultural and artistic affairs. The purpose of this certification is to preserve and pass down traditional craftsmanship to future generations while promoting innovation. This is the first exhibition of its kind in the world introducing one artist from each of the fifteen fields, including ceramics, glass, leather, tortoiseshell, feather, umbrellas, fans, and wallpaper. Visitors are invited to view and experience outstanding craftsmanship and tradition, as well as splendid beauty that will inspire future generations.

UNKEI - The Great Master of Buddhist Sculpture

Heiseikan Special Exhibition Galleries :September 26, 2017 (Tue) - November 26, 2017 (Sun)

In Japan, no Buddhist sculptor is better known than Unkei. With his extraordinary artistic talent, he led a new era in sculptural expression, creating realistic works that appear before the viewer as though they were alive. For this Special Exhibition, Unkei’s masterpieces have been brought together from across Japan. These include works from Kohfukuji temple in Nara, with which he had close relations. In addition to presenting an overview of Unkei’s life as a sculptor, the origins of Unkei’s remarkable style and its transmission will also be explored through the inclusion of works by his father, Kokei, as well as his sons, Tankei and Koben.

Upcoming Treasures from Ninnaji Temple and Omuro

Heiseikan Special Exhibition Galleries :January 16, 2018 (Tue) - March 11, 2018 (Sun)

Ninnaji, the head temple of the Omuro branch of the Shingon sect, was founded by the devotion of Emperor Koko in 886 (Ninna 2), and was completed under the following Emperor Uda in 888 (Ninna 4). Following generations of emperors became followers of the temple. Today, the temple is designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, as one of the “Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto.” This exhibition features treasures of Ninnaji, together with Buddhist sculptures and other precious artifacts preserved at temples of the Omuro branch.

Upcoming Roads of Arabia: Archaeological Treasures of Saudi Arabia

Anthropomorphic stele, Qaryat al-Kaafa, c.3500-2500 BC (National Museum, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia)

Hyokeikan   :January 23, 2018 (Tue) - March 18, 2018 (Sun)

Since ancient times the Arabian Peninsula has been intersected by trade routes, acting as a crossroads of diverse peoples and civilizations. This exhibition will for the very first time in Japan display treasures from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia that reveal a dynamic history and culture. Approximately 400 invaluable cultural properties will be displayed, including the oldest stone tools in Asia, dating back over a million years; anthropomorphic stelae erected in the desert 5,000 years ago; excavated artifacts from the thriving ancient cities of the Hellenistic and Roman periods; a 17th-century door from the Ka'bah in Mecca, the holiest site in the religion of Islam; and possessions of King Abdulaziz, the first monarch of Saudi Arabia, from the 20th century. We invite you to take advantage of this unique opportunity to experience the immensely rich and fascinating history of the Arabian Peninsula.

Upcoming Celebrating the 130th Anniversary of KOKKA and the 140th Anniversary of The Asahi Shimbun
Echoes of a Masterpiece: The Lineage of Beauty in Japanese Art

Cactus and Domestic Fowls (detail), by Ito Jakuchu, Edo period, 18th century (Important Cultural Property, Lent by Saifukuji, Osaka)

Heiseikan Special Exhibition Galleries :April 13, 2018 (Fri) - May 27, 2018 (Sun)

A variety of dramatic stories surround the creation of what are now considered “masterpieces” in the history of Japanese art. Moreover, these masterpieces were passed down through the ages and led to the birth of other, extraordinary works of art. Bringing together approximately 120 of these artworks, including National Treasures and Important Cultural Properties from a wide breadth of regions and historical periods, this exhibition will uncover the stories surrounding their creation, explore the shared aesthetic sense they reflect, and study the influence they exerted on one another.