In commemoration of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, The Japan Foundation, Kuala Lumpur invites all Malaysians to feast their eyes on the traditional craftsmanship of the region resolutely recovering from the disaster. Beautiful Handicrafts of Tohoku, Japan opens at Galeri Shah Alam on 16 May and runs till 22 June before moving to the Penang State Museum on 1 July–21 August.
The 70 objects on display—encompassing pottery, lacquerware, textiles, basket weaving, metalwork and woodwork—epitomise the highly-developed techniques of local artisans and the functional elegance of daily implements used since medieval times. Viewers can observe the folk wisdom of each of the six prefectures that make up the land through their native specialties, which include kogin embroidery from Aomori, magewappa and kabazaiku woodcraft from Akita, as well as woven back pads known as bandori from Yamagata.
Also well-represented are works by artists who found inspiration in the crafting heritage and cultural spirit of Tohoku. There are woodblock prints by Shiko Munakata, screens and textiles by Keisuke Serizawa, and ceramics by Shoji Hamada and Kanjiro Kawai. Serizawa and Hamada had both notably been designated as Holders of Important Intangible Cultural Property (Living National Treasures) by the Japanese government.
Prior to Malaysia, the exhibition has travelled to Hungary, China, Vietnam, Thailand, Philippines, South Korea and Indonesia.
Galeri Shah Alam (directions)
16 May–21 June, 9 a.m.–5 p.m. daily
Penang State Museum (directions)
1 July–21 August, 2016
9 a.m.–5 p.m. (closed on public holidays)
Sample of Works
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