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2023 Art Exhibitions

In 2023, Portland Japanese Garden will continue to be a destination for those interested in experiencing world-class Japanese art and culture in one of the world’s most celebrated gardens. Next year, we will exhibit artworks exploring a range of human ingenuity expressed in techniques both modern and traditional, as well as showcase the work of Japan Institute’s inaugural Artist-in-Residence. Mark your calendars as we share a preview of what to expect in the months ahead.

Subtle Intimacy: Here and There (March 18 – June 12, 2023)

Japan Institute’s first Artist-in-Residence, Rui Sasaki. Photo by Meg Nanna.

After two seasonal residencies in Portland, Japan Institute’s inaugural Artist-in-Residence, Rui Sasaki, will exhibit her site-specific works inspired by the natural beauty of Portland Japanese Garden. Sasaki, who works primarily in glass, is known for her meticulous studies of the environment around her. Her work contemplates the stories of people and places and how encounters with plants and the weather can evoke a sense of intimacy and familiarity even in a foreign place. Sasaki aims to create immersive and multi-sensory experiences through her glass art installations that invite viewers to explore their own relationship with the natural world.

Takahiro Iwasaki: Constructed Worlds (Fall 2023 – Winter 2023)

Photo by Keizo Kioku. Photo courtesy of the Japan Foundation, © Takahiro Iwasaki, courtesy of ANOMALY

The craftsmanship of Hiroshima-based artist, Takahiro Iwasaki, has led to awe-inspiring architectural sculptures and earned him many accolades as one of Japan’s young artists to watch. Iwasaki plays with our sense of the familiar, using everyday materials such as duct tape, wooden dowels and toothbrushes, and transforming them into extraordinary model landscapes that literally turn our expectations upside down.

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Garden of Resonance: The Art of Jun Kaneko (through February 20, 2023)  

Jun Kaneko, Untitled, Heads, hand built glazed ceramic with steel base, 2014. Photo by Johnathan Ley.

In October, we welcomed back internationally acclaimed artist Jun Kaneko for his second exhibition at Portland Japanese Garden. Garden of Resonance showcases works spanning the artist’s career from large, outdoor ceramic installations to his playful paintings, drawings, and experimental small ceramic pieces. See this exhibition against the transformative background of our ever-changing garden before it leaves at the end of February 2023.

Kenji Ide: A Poem of Perception (through Spring 2023)

Photo by Kenji Ide.

Responding to the work of Jun Kaneko and the spaces within Portland Japanese Garden, an emerging Japanese artist, Kenji Ide, worked with Portland-based curator Matt Jay to create a site-specific installation in the Calvin and Mayho Tanabe Gallery. Composed of found objects as well as hand-crafted natural elements, this installation invites viewers to contemplate the connections between objects, materials, and spaces set within the context of a Japanese Garden.