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Eiraku Hozen. Bowl with Clouds and Cranes, Edo period (1615–1868). Porcelain with red and gold overglaze, 3.58 x 4.8 x 4.8 inches. Courtesy of Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park, The Museum of Contemporary Ceramic Art.

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH.- Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture presents a once-in-a-lifetime exhibition of Japanese art, Splendors of Shiga: Treasures from Japan. This major display, exclusive to Meijer Gardens, opened to the public on January 30th and features more than 75 iconic works of art, most of which have never been seen outside of Japan.

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Splendors of Shiga: Treasures from Japan will display more than 60 Japanese works of art from the 8th century to the present day. Courtesy of Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture

Timed to anticipate and coincide with the opening of The Richard & Helen DeVos Japanese Garden, this exhibition features exceptional hand-painted scrolls and screen paintings, centuries-old Buddhist statuary and devotional objects, meticulously designed ancient and contemporary kimonos, meaningful tea ceremony objects and exceptional varieties of famed Shigaraki and Shiga-area pottery.

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Stoneware roof tile with gargoyle, Onigawara, Edo period (1615-1868). 14.96 x 24.41 x 11.81 inches. Collection of Omihachiman City. Courtesy of Omihachiman City Municipal Kawara Museum.

Without doubt, this exhibition represents one of the most significant exhibition endeavors for Meijer Gardens,” said Joseph Becherer, chief curator and vice president of exhibitions and collections. “Nearly five years in the making, this exhibition brings the culture of Japan to the Midwest in a meaningful way.”

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Splendors of Shiga: Treasures from Japan will display more than 60 Japanese works of art from the 8th century to the present day. Courtesy of Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture

Resulting from the 40-year sister-state cultural relationship between Michigan and the Shiga Prefecture, Splendors of Shiga: Treasures from Japan will be displayed in three themes: Winter (January 30-March 22), Spring (March 28-June 4) and Summer & Fall (June 10-August 16). The exhibition will be temporarily closed March 23–27 and June 5–9 for changing of artifacts on display.

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Splendors of Shiga: Treasures from Japan will display more than 60 Japanese works of art from the 8th century to the present day. Courtesy of Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture

In addition, objects from the 9th century through the 20th century will be organized in one of several thematic areas: Devotional Treasures, The Landscape, Beauty in Daily Life, The Four Seasons and Ceremonial and Domestic Ceramics. The cross-integration of work allows for a more complete understanding of the foundations of Japanese art and it’s highly developed sense of aesthetic and integration into its culture.

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Moriguchi Kakō. Flowers, 1983. Kimono, Yuzen-style dyed silk, 66.93 inches long. Courtesy of The Museum of Modern Art, Shiga.

« As exemplified by the masterpieces on display, the visual arts play an extraordinary role in Japanese culture,” said Becherer. “From Buddhist statuary to painted scrolls, ceramics to kimono, this exhibition will be a delight to all audiences.”

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Splendors of Shiga: Treasures from Japan will display more than 60 Japanese works of art from the 8th century to the present day. Courtesy of Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture

The pieces featured in this exhibition are on loan from Shiga’s three primary art organizations: Museum of Modern Art, Shiga; Museum of Shiga Prefectural Government, Biwako-Bunkakan; Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park, with important additional loans from the Binman-ji Temple, Daiko-ji Temple, Hando Shrine, Kannon-ji Temple, Museum of Omihachiman City, Saimyo Temple and private collections.

kimono

Splendors of Shiga: Treasures from Japan will display more than 60 Japanese works of art from the 8th century to the present day. Courtesy of Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture

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