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Current Exhibition

Felice Beato Photographs

Yakunins and Servant
year of production unknown, albumen print,
Kawamura Memorial DIC Museum of Art

Dates:
September 9 – December 3, 2017
Hours:
9:30 - 17:00 (last admission 16:30)
Closed:
Mondays (except Sep. 18, Oct. 9), Sep. 19, Oct. 10
Organizer:
DIC Corporation
THIS IS MECENAT 2017

Felice Beato (1834 – 1909) was active as a traveling photographer in the mid-19th century, capturing exotic scenes of distant lands from the Middle East to India and on to China; and he also became noted as a wartime photographer, recording scenes of the Indian Rebellion of 1857, the Second Opium War and other events. In 1863, Beato traveled to Japan with the aid of the painter Charles Wirgman, and working from his base in Yokohama took photographs of landscapes and the lives of the people from the end of the Tokugawa Bakufu era into the early Meiji Period. Beato would leave Japan in 1884, but his Japan photographs remained popular export items and were highly acclaimed as the beginning of the genre known as “Yokohama Photographs.” Today these photographs continue to hold strong appeal in our eyes as views of the way life actually was 150 years ago.

Photography has played an important role in modern Japanese visual arts and modes of expression. The techniques of oil painting and photography had been introduced to Japan from the West, and Japanese Western-style oil painting (Yoga) artists were known to use photographs for reference when visualizing landscapes, learning about composition and then executing oil paintings of high aesthetic and artistic quality.

In this exhibition, we display about 180 period photographs from three albums in the Kawamura Memorial DIC Museum of Art’s collection along with a selection of 18 early Yoga oil paintings created in Japan that shared the same focus on people (genre subjects) and landscapes. It is our hope that this exhibition will provide an opportunity to consider anew the interrelationship between Eastern and Western culture, while comparing how Western eyes saw Japan and, in response, how Japanese artists forged new visions of art in Japan.

*Concerning Beato’s date of birth, there are also theories of 1825 and 1832 as dates of birth.

Felice Beato Panorama of Yedo from Atagoyama

Felice Beato
Panorama of Yedo from Atagoyama
albumen print
Kawamura Memorial DIC Museum of Art

Highlights

1. The Face of Japan 150 Years Ago: [A Full Exhibit of] the Photographs of Felice Beato

This is the first full-scale exhibition of 180 period photographs from three albums in the collection of the Kawamura Memorial DIC Museum of Art. Photographed about 150 years ago, this collection contains prints in very good condition that also show the great technical skills of Felice Beato as a photographer and thus offer a priceless opportunity for us to view the now-lost world of Japan a century and a half ago.

Felice Beato Palace of Arima, Yedo

Felice Beato
Palace of Arima, Yedo
albumen print
Kawamura Memorial DIC Museum of Art

Felice Beato Night Guard, Yedo

Felice Beato
Night Guard, Yedo
albumen print
Kawamura Memorial DIC Museum of Art

Felice Beato Man with Leeks

Felice Beato
Man with Leeks
albumen print
Kawamura Memorial DIC Museum of Art

Felice Beato  n the Tokaido, near Yokohama

Felice Beato
On the Tokaido, near Yokohama
albumen print
Kawamura Memorial DIC Museum of Art

2. Early Japanese Western-style Oil Paintings Also on Display

Together with Beato’s photographs, a selection of 18 Yoga-style oil paintings on the same themes of people (genre scenes) and landscape by Charles Wirgman, Yuichi Takahashi, Kinkichiro Honda, Bunzaburo Watanabe, Yoshimatsu Goseda, Chu Asai, Shotaro Koyama, Genkichi Takahashi, Yukihiko Soyama and Bungo Sakuma are also on display. These artists who sought to paint in the new medium of Western-style oil painting, often used photographs in their process of creating works with new aesthetic and artistic value. This exhibition thus offers a chance to compare the difference and similarities in expressive qualities between paintings and photographs of this pivotal era.

Chu Asai Peasants Going Home, 1887
Yuichi Takahashi View from Atago Hill towards the Sea of Shinagawa, 1877

Left to light :
Chu Asai
Peasants Going Home, 1887
oil on canvas
Hiroshima Museum of Art

Yuichi Takahashi
View from Atago Hill towards the Sea of Shinagawa, 1877
oil on canvas
Yokohama Museum of Art

Bungo Sakuma Sketch of Nagafusa Village, 1889

Left to light :
Bungo Sakuma
Sketch of Nagafusa Village, 1889
oil on canvas
Fuchu Art Museum

Yoshimatsu Goseda
Portrait of a Woman, 1871
oil on canvas
Tokyo University of the Arts

Yoshimatsu Goseda Portrait of a Woman, 1871

Admission

Adults
¥1,300
Students & Seniors over 65 with ID
¥1,100
Elementary, middle and high school students
¥600

[Group rate over 20 persons (following price is for one person)]

Adults
¥1,100
Students & Seniors over 65 with ID
¥900
Elementary, middle and high school students
¥500

To Group Visitors

[Persons with disability pass (+ one attendant each)]

Adults
¥1,000
Students & Seniors over 65 with ID
¥800
Elementary, middle and high school students
¥400

Handicap Accessibility

  • *Admission also includes entrance to the permanent collection galleries.
  • *Museum Admission includes Grounds Admission.
  • - For students and seniors over 65, discounts require identification such as a Student ID, passport or driver's license.
  • - Students=college, vocational and preparatory school students
  • - Art Education Support Program is available for teachers so they can provide an interactive gallery talk with their students. (¥3500 per class / in Japanese only)

Future Exhibitions

Bridget Riley (working title)
April 14 - August 26, 2018

  • Museum