Japanese Gallery (Honkan) Room 15
September 29, 2009 (Tue) - January 3, 2010 (Sun)
The Ainu people believed that everything in their rich natural environment, from the vast plateaus of their native northern landscapes to the infinite expanse of the ocean, possessed a soul. Things which were essential to human life and beyond human influence were regarded as deities and worshipped.
The Ainu believed that a stable lifestyle would be impossible without the provision and protection of the gods. They prayed for a life of continued peace, and held rituals to verbally express their gratitude towards the gods for heeding their prayers.
This exhibition features items used by the Ainu people - including ritual implements such as inau, ikupasui and wooden bowls - together with clothes and tools used in everyday life, giving us an insight into the ways in which the Northern people prayed to their gods.