In the Galleries


Genji’s World in Japanese Woodblock Prints

March 11, 2014 – May 18, 2014 

The “Tale of Genji,” the first novel in the world, was written over 1000 years ago by the Japanese court lady Murasaki Shikibu. Shikibu’s epic novel was a popular source of inspiration for woodblock print and illustrated book artists in the 19th century. This exhibition, organized by Scripps College (Claremont, CA), features over 50 such woodblock prints and books depicting the scenes from Shikibu’s masterpiece.

Keeping in Touch: The Culture of Letter-Writing in Japan

March 11, 2014 – May 18, 2014 

In Japan, letter-writing is a highly refined art form that is deeply rooted in poetry, steeped in metaphorical allusions and symbolic meaning. Letter-writing evolved from short, heartfelt lyrical verses, skillfully rendered, sometimes on scented paper, and hand-delivered to their intended recipient. This exhibition presents a variety of letter-writing forms from poems to postcards, and explores the myriad art forms that letter-writing brought about in Japan, such as lacquer writing boxes, ink stones, brushes, elegant papers, and other stationary implements.