Here are some pictures I took at the Omiya Bonsai Art Museum in Japan.
The world’s first publicly-run Bonsai Museum has been opened here in Saitama City.
The Omiya Bonsai Art Museum, Saitama, which lies adjacent to the renowned Omiya Bonsai Village, will aim, through its activities, to promote the culture of bonsai－designated a traditional industry of Saitama City－ both locally and internationally. This will be achieved through the display of masterpieces and outstanding works with the collection of the former Takagi Bonsai Museum of Art forming the nucleus, as well as bonsai pots, stones of appreciation generally referred to as Suiseki and paintings such as Ukiyoe wood block paintings depicting bonsai. It will also entail the systematic collection and publishing of documents related to the history and folklore of Bonsai.
The museum will pursue the following three things to serve as pillars of the aforementioned activities.
First of all, the museum will conduct investigations and research into the history and significance of various bonsai and bonsai-related traditional arts from multiple perspectives including art history, craft history and the history of horticulture. The high-level results would then be made public in an easily understandable way through exhibitions and publications. Not only will the museum hold exhibitions, it will also actively develop awareness projects, including the development of courses and lectures, with a view to providing opportunities for constant interaction with bonsai culture throughout the year. Furthermore, the museum will strive for the establishment of interdisciplinary research on bonsai.
Secondly, as a new attraction on par with the Railway Museum, the Bonsai Museum seeks to become a sightseeing hub where not only local citizens, but also visitors from throughout Japan and abroad can readily experience how magnificent and interesting bonsai is.
Thirdly, I hope that visitors to the museum will also visit our city’s bonsai gardens in and around the Bonsai Village. I also hope that by experiencing the profoundness of bonsai, they will become, as it were, pilots for bonsai, and by extension strong supporters of the bonsai industry as a traditional industry.
The museum will therefore press forward with the integration of these three roles, that of bonsai research center, new sightseeing hub for Saitama City and contributor to the revitalizing of the bonsai industry, which together will form the pillar of its work.