Japan is undoubtedly one of the countries with the most unmissable cultural treasures. From its sublime temples to its traditional old neighborhoods, including museums bringing together thousands of artifacts spanning as many years of history, Japan is a true paradise for culture buffs. More particularly, since the turn of the century, Japan has distinguished itself as an epicenter of contemporary art, and the works of the greatest artists of the genre can be found across the archipelago.
Take advantage of your stay in Japan to immerse yourself in the Japanese artistic and architectural scene, with this tour perfectly designed for art lovers: “Art & Architecture”.
The specialized tour operator Japan Experience designed a 14-day “Art & Architecture” tour for art lovers which takes you from Tokyo to Kyoto, via the famous Setouchi Islands. From rural Japan to modern Japan, this tour takes you on an ideal route for an artistic journey, taking you to discover the country’s artistic treasures and the essentials of Japanese architecture. All with transport pass, car rental, travel book with advice and addresses, as well as Pocket Wifi included.
Also, the file below prepared by the tour operator invites you to discover the contemporary art scene in Japan, between internationally renowned art festivals and museums with unique collections in the world, here it is:
Tokyo’s contemporary art museums
· The Mori Museum, perched on the 52nd and 53rd floors of the Roppongi Hills Mori Tower, unveils temporary exhibitions by renowned artists. With an exceptional panorama of the city.
· NACT (National Art Center Tokyo, pictured here) is one of the largest museums in the country. With its 14,000m² of exhibitions, it is the epicenter of contemporary art in Japan.
· The Tokyo Museum of Contemporary Art, in the heart of Kiba Park, exhibits great classics of the genre by international and Japanese artists. An unmissable visit.
The three best contemporary art museums in the country
· The Museum of Contemporary Art of the 21st Century is located in Kanazawa. One of the 10 most visited art museums in the world in 2019, this Mecca of contemporary art exhibits dozens of works by internationally renowned artists.
· The Hakone Open Air Museum brings together 120 modern and contemporary art sculptures, in an open-air park with breathtaking views of the city’s onsen mountains.
· The Towada Art Center, in Aomori Prefecture, is an architectural gem, highlighting a new contemporary art scene in Japan. More recently opened and less known, it is nevertheless worth the detour.
The Setouchi Islands, heart of contemporary art in Japan
The Seto Inland Sea, between the main island of Honshu, the island of Kyushu and the island of Shikoku, is the heart of contemporary art in Japan. In particular, the Setouchi region stands out as an essential trip for lovers of contemporary art.
Its numerous museum islands, notably Naoshima, Teshima and Shodoshima, off the coast of Okayama, have been transformed in the last 30 years into a sublime natural backdrop for the biggest names in contemporary art.
Proof of the international reputation of contemporary art from the Setouchi islands, since 2010 the Setouchi Triennale has been held across the Seto Inland Sea. The first edition, which was expected to bring together 300,000 visitors, brought together almost a million art lovers.
The next edition will be in 2025, and will coincide with the opening of new museums and galleries, witnesses to the evolution of the Setouchi islands. Like previous editions, the Triennale will extend over the entire year, in spring, summer and autumn. The key word behind Naoshima being well-being, the festival will highlight harmony between humans, art and the environment.
In Niigata prefecture, the Echigo-Tsumari Triennale will also hold its next edition in the summer of 2025, with hundreds of works set in the region’s rural landscapes. Closer to Tokyo, the Nakanojo Biennale takes place from September 9 to October 9, 2023 in Gunma prefecture, and highlights more than 100 contemporary Japanese artists, who will exhibit in onsen, abandoned buildings, in the street…