The Future of Artisanal Beauty: Vessels, Wrappings, Decorations The Future of Artisanal Beauty: Vessels, Wrappings, Decorations The Future of Artisanal Beauty: Vessels, Wrappings, Decorations

Special Exhibition: Art Kogei, from Japan to the World ”The Future of Artisanal Beauty: Vessels, Wrappings, Decorations”

Concept Concept

When art takes on physical form, three elements exist: technique and materials; concepts which form the motivation for creation; and expression. Generally, craftsmanship is based on technique and materials, whereas contemporary art takes concepts as its basis. However, works of high quality are those that explore these elements from an original perspective and are produced with fine balance. These days, there are many outstanding works which integrate craftsmanship and contemporary art, embodying the characteristics of both. These works combine the meticulousness of craftsmanship with the concepts and expressiveness of contemporary art. This exhibition introduces 10 artists whose works, while based on craftsmanship, transcend genres.
The theme this time is the artisanal beauty of the forms of vessels, or "utsuwa". From the perspective of plastic arts, the form of vessels can be considered a distinctive form unique to craftsmanship. It embodies not only the function of a simple container, but also includes the essential meaning of artisanal form. For example, we associate vessels with human body shapes, naming vessel parts such as the mouth or torso, or adding limbs to vessels to directly express human form. In this way, transcending the vessel as a mere tool for containing, there exists a "utsuwa" form enriched with imagery and expression. Further developing the characteristics of craftsmanship, this exhibition is constructed from the perspective of the concept of "wrappings" and "decorations". This exhibition introduces new trends that question the essence of craft through free expression of craftsmanship.

Curator Curator

Supervisor, Curator
Akimoto Yuji

Professor Emeritus of Tokyo University of the Arts; Specially Appointed Curator of the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art; Kanazawa, Professor Emeritus of Tainan National University of the Arts; art critic.
Akimoto was born in Tokyo in 1955. He graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts of Tokyo University of the Arts. He has been involved in the Naoshima art project since 1991. Starting from 2004, he has held various leadership roles, including the curator of Chichu Art Museum (2004-2006), curator of the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa (2007-2016), curator and professor of The University Art Museum, Tokyo University of the Arts (2015-2021), curator of Nerima Art Museum (2017-2023). Since 2021, he has served as the General Supervisor and Curator of "GO FOR KOGEI, the Hokuriku Craft Festival". His major projects and exhibitions include "Standard" and "Naoshima Standard 2" (Kagawa), "The 1st-3rd Triennale of KOGEI in Kanazawa" (Kanazawa; Tsaotun, Taiwan), "The Crafts futurism" (Kanazawa; New York, US), "Yuichi Inoue 1916-1985, Liberation of the Calligraphy" as the Official Curator of "Japonism 2018" (Paris; Albi, France), and "Art As It Is: Expressions from the Obscure" (Tokyo, Japan). His publications include "Art Thinking" (President, Inc.).

Yuji Akimoto

Takayama Kentaro

Representative Director of artness Inc.
Takayama was born in 1982 in Osaka, Japan. In 2004, he joined Fukutake Foundation. He was involved in the establishment of art museums and art projects in Naoshima, Toshima and Inujima islands until 2011. In 2013, he was involved in the establishment of the cultural business company Noetica as a director. Over eight years, he was involved in the launch of art fairs and art festivals specializing in crafts, including "KOGEI Art Fair Kanazawa" and "KUTANism". In April 2021, he founded the art business company artness Inc. His major exhibitions and projects include the curation of " GO FOR KOGEI, the Hokuriku Craft Festival" and "ART JOB FAIR," the first job fair in Japan specializing in the cultural arts.

Kentaro Takayama

Date/Time Date/Time

Tokyo Venue
DateJuly 4 (Thursday) to July 16 (Tuesday), 2024
Time11:00~19:00(Closed on Mondays)
Entrance feeFree of charge

Kyoto Venue
DateNovember 3 (Public holiday&Sunday) to November 5 (Tuesday), 2024
Time10:00 - 16:30 (reception closes at 5:00 p.m.)
PlaceKenninji Temple Shoin
Entrance feeKenninji temple entrance fee is required.

※Kenninji temple entrance fee: Adults: 800 yen; Students (elementary, junior high, high school): 500 yen
※Children under elementary school age: free
※Children under elementary school age may not enter the temple alone.
※People with a disability certificate may enter the temple free of charge (assistance is charged).

Access Access

Tokyo Venue
Address4F, 1-32-8 Higashi Shinagawa, Shinagawa, Tokyo 140-0002

Kyoto Venue
PlaceKenninji Temple Shoin
AddressKomatsucho, Yamato Ojidori Shijo-sagaru, Higashiyama, Kyoto

Contact Contact

Please send us your inquiries with your name via email.
**Inquiries will be replied by MAGUS Co. in charge of artwork sales within the exhibition committee.