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TEWAZA: Recreating Ryukyuan Handicraft Culture

  • Image of "Pair of tin utamanuchi bottles decorated with glass beads, 2018; original: 16th–19th centuries, Okinawa Prefectural Museum & Art Museum"

    Pair of tin utamanuchi bottles decorated with glass beads, 2018; original: 16th–19th centuries, Okinawa Prefectural Museum & Art Museum

    TEWAZA: Recreating Ryukyuan Handicraft Culture

    Heiseikan Thematic Exhibition Room : January 15, 2022 (Sat) - March 13, 2022 (Sun)

    Japan’s southern-most prefecture, Okinawa, once flourished as its own independent kingdom, Ryukyu. Much of its unique culture was, however, lost in the Meiji-era pursuit of modernization and the flames of the Second World War. Between 2015 and 2020, the Okinawa Prefectural Museum & Art Museum spearheaded a project to create reproductions of sixty-five objects that encapsulate the culture of the Ryukyu Kingdom. This project saw researchers and artisans working hand in hand to revive some of Ryukyu’s lost tangible and intangible cultural properties, and in the process rediscovering their handicraft culture. In presenting a selection of their re-creations here, we hope to bring the aesthetic world of the Ryukyuan people into modern day, and, in doing so, highlight the connections between Okinawa’s heritage and its future.

    List of Works  (444KB)

*All the works in this exhibition are from the Okinawa Prefectural Museum and Art Museum collection.
*With the exceptions of exhibits comprising tools and materials used in production processes, the works displayed are reproductions unless otherwise stated.
* Some artworks may be rotated during the exhibition period.

On view during the first rotation: January 15 – February 6, 2022

On view during the second rotation: February 8– February 20, 2022

On view during the third rotation: February 22– March 13, 2022

 

Major works in this exhibition

 

On exhibit from January 15 to February 6, 2022
Confucius and His Four Disciples
2018
Original: Ryukyu Kingdom, 19th century
 
On exhibit from January 15 to March 13, 2022
Pair of tin utamanuchi bottles decorated with glass beads
2018
Original: 16th–19th centuries
 
On exhibit from January 15 to March 13, 2022
Sake wine–drinking set used in a Mitsuokazari ceremony
2016-2018
Original: Second Sho period, Ryukyu Kingdom
Red lacquerware footed tray decorated with tomoe comma crests and peonies in gold inlay and openwork
2020
Original: 16th century
 

 

On exhibit from January 15 to February 20, 2022
Ramie bingata garment depicting flowing water, butterflies, and swallows on white ground
2019
Original: 18th–19th centuries
 

 

 

On exhibit from February 22 to March 13, 2022
Silk child’s garment depicting phoenixes, bats, and waves on yellow ground; lined with red silk fabric
2019
Original: 18th–19th centuries
 
On exhibit from February 22 to March 13, 2022
Ramie tanashi (summer garment) decorated in double ikat on pink ground
2019
Original: 19th century
 

 

 

On exhibit from January 15 to March 13, 2022
Dachibin hip flask
2019
Original: 19th century
 

 

On exhibit from January 15 to February 20, 2022
Black lacquer tundabun tray and set of dishes, depicting dragons and clouds in mother-of-pearl inlay
2020
Original: 19th century
 
On exhibit from February 22 to March 13, 2022
Red lacquerware ukufan (food container for sacred offerings) decorated with tomoe comma crests in gold inlay
2018
Original: 17th–18th centuries
 

 

 

On exhibit from January 15 to March 13, 2022
Sanshin Okinawan lute, known as "Jabisen "
2020
Original: late 19th century
 
On exhibit from January 15 to February 6, 2022
Parapet slab from the Tamaudon Royal Mausoleum
2019
Original: 16th century
 

 

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General Information

Period Saturday, January 15, 2022–Sunday, March 13, 2022
Venue Heiseikan Thematic Exhibition Room, Tokyo National Museum (Ueno Park)
Hours 9:30 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
(Last entry 30 minutes before closing)
Closed Mondays (Excluding holidays. On those days, the Museum will be open on Monday and closed the following day); Subject to change.
Admission

Admission for this exhibition is included in tickets for the regular and special exhibitions (if visited on the same day).

Adults: 1,000 yen
University students: 500 yen

*

Regular admission is free for persons under 18 and over 70. Please show proof of age (driver's license, passport, etc.) when entering.

*

Persons with disabilities are admitted free of charge along with one attendant. Please show official ID or other documentation.

*

Special exhibitions require separate ticketing procedure and admission fees.

We recommend that you purchase a timed-entry ticket online before your visit. Tickets may also be purchased at the ticket counter, but you may be asked to wait if the exhibition is crowded. Also, please be aware that tickets are limited and may sell out.

See visitor information page for more details.

Access 10 minutes' walk from JR Ueno Station (Park exit) and Uguisudani Station
15 minutes' walk from Keisei Ueno Station, Tokyo Metro Ueno Station and Tokyo Metro Nezu Station
Organizers Okinawa Prefectural Museum and Art Museum, Tokyo National Museum
With cooperation from Izena Village Board of Education, Okinawa Churashima Foundation,
The Japan Folk Crafts Museum, SUNTORY MUSEUM of ART,
Joshibi University of Art and Design Art Museum, Haebaru Town Museum
With the Support of NHK OKINAWA, Okinawa Prefectural Board of Education,
The Okinawa Times, OTV CO.,LTD, RADIO OKINAWA CORPORATION,
Naha City, Ryukyu Asahi Broadcasting Corporation, The Ryukyu Shimpo, Ryukyu Broadcasting Corp.
General Inquiries 050-5541-8600  (Hello Dial)