“Living National Treasure” is a Japanese term for those who have mastered their art or craft and therefore help to preserve Japanese cultural heritage. These artists are designated as a “Living National Treasure” by the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT). This designation is a top honor in Japanese culture and seen as the pinnacle of one’s career.
The exhibition will rotate over two showings to present the entire breadth of ceramic art, ranging from millennia-old techniques to contemporary endeavors by some of Japan’s best artists. Moreover, this exhibition is extremely rare as it includes pieces by two inimitable artists, Kawai Kanjiro (1890 – 1966) and Kitaoji Rosanjin (1883 – 1959), both of whom achieved, yet voluntarily declined the status of Living National Treasure offered by the Japanese Government.
This exhibition is produced through the personal collection and courtesy of Portland Japanese Garden volunteer, Richard Anderson. Anderson has lived in Japan for extended periods of time on four occasions, and his collection began when he was in Japan assisting a Nichiren Buddhist priest build an art museum at the largest Buddhist temple complex in Tokyo.
Learn more about Richard Anderson and his path for curating his pottery treasures here.
This exhibition will be available in the Tanabe Gallery and will have two showings that will rotate the pieces on display.
- Showing 1: Saturday, September 26 – Monday, October 12 (exhibition unavailable on 10/9)
- Showing 2: Wednesday, October 14 – Sunday, October 25