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Past Exhibition

Special Exhibition Commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the Yamatane Museum of Art
The Best of the Yamatane Collection IV

Definitive Nihonga Masterpieces: The Tokyo Art World
― 19th Century to Contemporary Paintings

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Yokoyama Taikan, Divine Spirit: Mt. Fuji,
Ink and Light Color on Silk, 1952, Yamatane Museum of Art

16 February (Thu.) – 16 April (Sun.) 2017
(Closed on 3/21 and on Mondays, but open on 3/20)

Hours:10 am - 5 pm (Last admission at 4:30 pm)

Admission Fees: Adults: 1,200 [1,000] yen; university and high school students: 900 [800] yen; middle school and younger children: free of charge
*Figures in brackets are for groups of 20 or more, advance tickets, and those who are wearing kimono.
*Disability ID holders and one person accompanying them are admitted free of charge.

Organized by: Yamatane Museum of Art and The Asahi Shimbun

Highlights of the Exhibition
Yokoyama Taikan, Divine Spirit: Mt. Fuji, Ink and Light Color on Silk, Shōwa Period, 1952, Yamatane Museum of Art
Shimomura Kanzan, Ancient Pine Tree and White Wisterias, Color on Gold-Leafed Paper, Taishō Period, 1921, Yamatane Museum of Art
Kawai Gyokudō, Young Ladies Planting Rice, Color on Silk, Shōwa Period, 1945, Yamatane Museum of Art
Hishida Shunsō, The Moon in the Four Seasons (Spring, Autumn), Ink and Light Color on Silk, Meiji Period, c. 1909-10, Yamatane Museum of Art
Matsuoka Eikyū, Court Ladies in Spring Clothing, in the Spring Sunlight, Color on Silk, Taishō Period, 1917, Yamatane Museum of Art
Kobayashi Kokei, Scenes from the Legend of Kiyohime: Hidaka River, Color on Paper, Shōwa Period, 1930, Yamatane Museum of Art
Yasuda Yukihiko, Oda Nobunaga Dancing before His Departure for the Front, Color on Paper, Shōwa Period, 1970, Yamatane Museum of Art
Maeda Seison, Minamoto no Yoshitsune's Boat in Daimotsu Bay: Scene from the Tale of Gikeiki, Color on Paper, Shōwa Period, 1968, Yamatane Museum of Art
Okumura Togyū, Maelstroms at Naruto, Color on Paper, Shōwa Period, 1959, Yamatane Museum of Art
Higashiyama Kaii, End of the Year, Color on Paper, Shōwa Period, 1968, Yamatane Museum of Art
Okuda Gensō, Oirase Ravine: Autumn, Color on Paper, Shōwa Period, 1983, Yamatane Museum of Art

Approximately 50 works in total are to be displayed.

Exhibition Overview

The last of our exhibitions commemorating the museum’s half-century milestone follows the previous exhibition, which focused on Kyoto, by introducing definitive nihonga masterpieces by artists active in the Tokyo art world.

During the turbulent Meiji period, artists were exploring new approaches to nihonga. Under the leadership of Okakura Tenshin of the Tokyo Fine Arts School (now Tokyo University of the Arts), artists such as Yokohama Taikan, Hishida Shunsō, and Shimomura Kanzan engaged in a quest for styles and themes appropriate for their times, while continuing to value research on the classics. The Japan Art Institute, the private art organization that Tenshin founded in 1898, continues to operate today, after many twists and turns, and has produced many famous artists, including Kobayashi Kokei, Yasuda Yukihiko, Okumura Togyū, and Hirayama Ikuo. In the public sector, the Bunten (Ministry of Education Exhibition), the first official art exhibition, was held in 1907 and played a significant role in the modernization of nihonga. Its successors were the Teiten (Imperial Art Exhibition) and, after World War II, the Nitten (Japan Fine Arts Exhibition). Those exhibitions provided the stage on which Kawai Gyokudō, Higashiyama Kaii, Sugiyama Yasushi, Takayama Tatsuo, and many other artists were active. Paintings by Inten and Nitten artists form the core of this exhibition, which presents significant works that have had a lasting impact on the history of the Tokyo art world.

Yamazaki Taneji, the founder of our museum and its first director, supported artists who were his contemporaries before, during, and after the war, interacting directly with them as he built his collection. The inspiration for founding the museum was Taikan’s comment, “Why not do something for the public good?” We can trace the history of Taneji’s friendships with artists through the works he commissioned for anniversaries and other signal events that have been added to the collection over our fifty-year history. This exhibition traces the development of the Tokyo art world from the dawn of the modern period to today through masterpieces that are indispensable to art history textbooks and episodes concerning the artists and our founder, Yamazaki Taneji.


Matsuoka Eikyū,
Court Ladies in Spring Clothing, in the Spring Sunlight,
Color on Silk, 1917,
Yamatane Museum of Art

Hishida Shunsō,
The Moon in the Four Seasons (Spring, Autumn),
Ink and Light Color on Silk,
c. 1909-10,
Yamatane Museum of Art

Shimomura Kanzan,
Ancient Pine Tree and White Wisterias,
Color on Gold-Leafed Paper, 1921,
Yamatane Museum of Art

Yasuda Yukihiko,
Oda Nobunaga Dancing before His Departure for the Front,
Color on Paper, 1970,
Yamatane Museum of Art

Kawai Gyokudō,
Young Ladies Planting Rice,
Color on Silk, 1945,
Yamatane Museum of Art

Kobayashi Kokei,
Scenes from the Legend of Kiyohime: Hidaka River,
Color on Paper, 1930,
Yamatane Museum of Art

Okumura Togyū,
Maelstroms at Naruto,
Color on Paper, 1959,
Yamatane Museum of Art

Higashiyama Kaii,
End of the Year,
Color on Paper, 1968,
Yamatane Museum of Art
3-12-36 Hiroo Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-0012  TEL: +81-3-5777-8600
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