Diverse Japanese Craft-works at History Museum
06 June, 2013
Diverse Japanese Craft-works at  History Museum
On May 29, at Tbilisi History Museum, affiliated to Georgian National Museum and the Embassy of Japan presented the Japan Foundation Travelling Exhibition “Contemporary Japanese Crafts”.
Visitors have an opportunity to view a wealth of beautifully executed 62 Japanese craft-works, which abound with a wonderfully arranged variety of textures, shapes and colors: ceramics, lacquer-ware, gold-plated tea utensils, to mention just a few.
The exhibited works fall into six categories - ostentation, quiet refinement, crispness, f
ine detail, deformation, flowers and birds in order to understand them intuitively. Impressive point of this exhibition is that the strikingly unique items are forged from a blending of traditional designs and techniques with more modern materials, methods and needs.
“In brief, I would like to accentuate that the works demonstrate the contemporary characteristics of Japanese crafts in all its diverse sense of value and its highly complex developments. As a true celebration of the artistic imagination, this exhibit testifies to the native Japanese craftsmen’s inventive originality and creativity. We hope that visitors will discover new interesting horizons in these Japanese works,” Mr. Hiroki Tokunaga, Interim Ambassador of Japan to Georgian pointed out in his opening speech.
The history of crafts in Japan is very old,it spans several centuries, and is filled with a variety of influences from different sources such as China and Korea. These influences have been gradually absorbed and further developed, eventually resulting in works that reflect the Japanese artistic temperament. In modern times, with the rapid introduction of Western social systems and culture, Japanese crafts have not simply retained the traditional forms and decorative embellishments that had been handed down from previous generations. Instead, artists who attempt to express their own artistic temperament through their work have appeared.
These artists have demanded a variety of footholds on which to anchor their own creativity. Some make a traditional artistic view the basis for their own work. Some incorporate artistic ideas from Europe and the United States, such as Art Deco or Constructivism, into their creations. Some intend their creations to be used as part of our everyday life, and they therefore emphasize practical functionality while infusing their work with creativity. Others, taking an avant-garde stance, seek to express new artistic concepts in concrete form in their work. And others attempt to reexamine the meaning of the materials themselves.
Just as the values of the Japanese people became more diverse following the Second World War, crafts also developed in ever more complex ways and branched out in many directions. So much so that it is now considered impossible to state what the salient characteristics or common attributes of Japanese crafts are. However, even though contemporary Japanese crafts may appear to be completely disparate, it is possible to identify several common themes. And therefore it is these common themes that indicate the state of contemporary Japanese crafts.
“This is not our first joint exhibition. This particular display shows a synthesis of the traditional and contemporary Japanese art that is so rarely seen in general,” Ketevan Trapaidze, representative and organizer of the exhibition from Tbilisi History Museum noted.
The exhibition will last until June 23.
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