The 50th anniversary of the Suntory Foundation for the Arts Styles of Play: The History of Merrymaking in Art

“We are all born to play.” This famous line is from the Ryojin Hisho, a late twelfth-century collection of popular songs. In that spirit, this exhibition focuses on play, amusements, merrymaking as a theme in art. Games like sugoroku, a board game related to backgammon, or karuta, playing card games, dance, even fashion: men and women always become enthusiastically absorbed in enjoying all sorts of amusements. But their content changes over time. In this exhibition, famous seventeenth-century paintings and prints on the subject of recreation guide us to a deeper understanding of play in human life. Our fore-bearers made merry, sometimes artlessly, sometimes languorously. Let us imagine what merrymaking meant for them and what their secrets were for enjoying life in the floating world.


  • Period

  • Venue

    Tokyo Midtown Galleria 3F, 9-7-4 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo, JAPAN
  • Admission

    Adults 1,300yen
    College and High school students 1,000yen

    *Free for junior high school students and under
    *Persons with disabilities are admitted free with one accompanying person each(ID required)

    For more details, visit the official site.

  • Closed days


  • Opening hours

    10:00〜18:00 *Open until 20:00 on Fridays and Saturdays *Open until 20:00 on July 14 and August 11 *Last admission: 30 minutes before closing
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100 years of Japanese Tableware – Okuratouen

Established in 1919 by Magobei and Kazuchika Okura, Okuratouen (a.k.a Okura Art China Inc.) continues to produce world-class products as Japan’s representative Western tableware maker. This exhibition introduces Okura Art China’s exceptional designs and quality, exhibits products made for clients such as business leaders and well-established hotels, and explores the role of the company in Japan’s western-style tableware culture. The exhibit also features recently discovered materials that convey new information about the period when Okura Art China was found. *Some pieces will be replaced during the exhibition period.


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