Now through June 28th, 2015 the Niigata Bandaijima Art Museum is featuring a highly unique cross-over exhibition. The selection explores how modern Korean and Japanese artists experienced and represented the space known as “Korea” from the 1890’s through the 1960’s—a turbulent period marked by war, colonization, and dramatic cultural change.

Cover Photo

(Exhibit Information Below)

The Japanese colonization of Korea remains a serious historical and political point of contention for Japan-Korea relations. Even addressing this history can be a delicate issue, and churning storms of public outcry are never far away. This particular exhibit took more than 5 whole years to put together with the cooperation and input of museums in South Korea.

The exhibit includes famous works as well as previously censored pieces that could not be publicly shown before. Generous write-ups are supplied for almost all of the Korean artists featured.



Formally the exhibition is divided into 5 sections:
I: The Discovery of Korea
II: The Landscapes of Modern Korea
III: Modern Life
IV: Group Activities & Mentorships
V: Epilogue

One of the most stimulating parts of the exhibition is the insight into the gradation of themes taken up by 1) Korean artists, 2) Japanese artists residing in Korea, and 3) Japanese artists visiting Korea. Many of the works by Korean artists explored the shifting and contradictory boundaries of society and societal spaces—the meeting of old and new, East and West. Many representations produced by Japanese artists, on the other hand, were frequently nostalgic or exotic, depicting a “pre-modern Korea” that could be viewed as a sort of “lost Japan.”

Examples of mututal influence can be found in the works of both Japanese and Korean artists–sometimes a result of mutual inspiration, and at other times a result of institutional power imbalances under Japanese rule.

But whether you’re interested in history specifically or art in general, “The Gaze of Modern Korean & Japanese Artists” is a stimulating exhibit with much to offer.

Exhibit Info
Official English Title: “Korean & Japanese Modern Artists in the Korean Peninsula, 1890s to 1960s”
Date: May 16 ~ June 28 (Sun)
Hours: 10:00 ~ 18:00 (admission closes 30min prior to closing)
Closed: June 15 (Mon)

General Admission: 1,100JPY
Student (College, High School): 900JPY
(Jr. high & younger get in free)

For more info:

Location: Toki Messe 5F

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