Mineral Colors, Myriad Images: Nihonga from the Collection

First half of the exhibition: Mar.13 (Sat), 2010 – Jun.8 (Tue), 2010
Second half of the exhibition: Jun.11 (Fri), 2010 – Sep.5 (Sun), 2010
“Mineral Colors, Myriad Images: Nihonga from the Collection” is the Pola Museum of Art’s first exhibition of Nihonga (Japanese-style) paintings. The Museum has until now concentrated on the presentation of European, mainly French, art. This Nihonga exhibition features 120 works from the Museum’s collection, displayed over two separate exhibition periods. Forty-three works by Sugiyama Yasushi (1909–1993) are on view. The Museum holds the largest collection of this artist’s works in Japan.
The exhibition is divided into 4 sections. The first section, ‘Yokoyama Taikan and the Advent of Modern Nihonga’ centers on Yokoyama Taikan (1868–1958) and the Nihonga artists who developed modern Nihonga. The second section, ‘Sugiyama Yasushi and the Search for Pure Painting’ focuses on Sugiyama, whose works form the core of the Pola Museum of Art’s Nihonga collection. His works combine realistic and abstract composition and show experimentation with matière. The third section, ‘Higashiyama Kaii and Lyricism in Nihonga’ features works by Higashiyama Kaii (1908-1999), an artist who introduced depictions of lyrical European scenes and landscapes as Nihonga subjects. In the final section of the exhibition, ‘Hirayama Ikuo and a Return to Origins,’ the paintings of Hirayama Ikuo (1930-2009) on the themes of Buddhism and the Silk Road are introduced. Hirayama was also active in the field of cultural heritage conservation.