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Exhibition Policies

Exhibition Overview

Among the wide variety of activities our Museum engages in, exhibitions are the core.
We hold four main types of exhibitions: 1) special exhibitions, curated from other museums and private collections in Japan and abroad based on certain themes, or other times in support of new works by artists; 2) collection exhibitions from the Museum Collection, organized with selections of artworks and materials from our own collection; 3) exhibitions organized to support young artists and promote education; and 4) the Yokohama Triennale itself which we have considered one of our special exhibition projects since 2011.

Special Exhibitions

The Yokohama Museum of Art holds three special exhibitions per year on a wide variety of themes based on the following core policy. Since our opening in 1989, we have presented over 120 such exhibitions.

  1. Exhibitions with global perspectives suited to the international port city of Yokohama.
  2. Exhibitions that aim to deepen the local community’s understanding of and engagement with contemporary art.
  3. Exhibitions that emphasize Yokohama’s relationship with the history of photography in Japan, and that take a multifaceted view of photography up to the contemporary moment from international perspectives.
  4. Exhibitions of modern Japanese art or art related to Yokohama. With particular emphasis on artists associated with Hara Sankei, these exhibitions also incorporate a historical perspective on the development of Yōga (Western-style painting) and Nihonga (modern Japanese-style painting) since the opening of the port. These exhibitions also spotlight artists born or residing in Yokohama, emphasizing the diversity of Yokohama’s art history.
  5. Exhibitions in fields closely linked to daily life, such as architecture, crafts, and design.

Exhibitions from the Museum Collection

Our four exhibition rooms give us ample space to introduce our collection, with exhibits rotating two to three times each year. Of the approximately 13,000 pieces in the collection, 200 to 300 carefully selected works are on display at any given time. By designating a theme for each exhibition, the Museum features the many fascinating aspects of our collection from a variety of angles. In sync with our collection policy, exhibitions sometimes feature certain characteristics of each genre in an easy-to-understand manner, while other times will form a thematic cross-section of the Museum’s entire collection across different genres. We hope that each visit to the Museum’s exhibition rooms will help you encounter a new favorite piece! 

Other Exhibitions

Since its opening, the Yokohama Museum of Art has held a number of small-scale exhibitions in addition to special exhibitions and collection exhibitions. Between 2005 to 2009, we held “Artists in the Museum/Yokohama”, a multifaceted program in which artists stay in Yokohama, create new works, and hold workshops both at the Museum and at various locations around the city. Starting in 2007, we launched “New Artist Picks” (NAP), a program designed to support young artists, and have held solo exhibitions by emerging artists approximately once a year. We have also held a number of exhibitions as a part of our educational outreach activities, including open studios and workshops with artists, and as a venue for course participants to present the results of their studies. We plan to continue rolling out a variety of vibrant events, so please check out our calendar for upcoming events. 

The Yokohama Triennale

The Yokohama Triennale is an international contemporary art exhibition held every three years in collaboration with the City of Yokohama. In addition to exhibiting the works of internationally renowned artists, the Triennale also introduces a wide range of up-and-coming artists and aims to provide a venue for presenting the latest trends in contemporary art from around the world.
Since its inauguration in 2001, the Yokohama Triennale has addressed the relationships both between Japan and the world and the individual and society, and has reexamined the social role of art from a variety of perspectives in response to a world in constant flux.
The first three editions (2001, 2005 and 2008) were primarily organized and overseen by the Japan Foundation to enhance cultural exchange between Japan and other countries and cultures through contemporary art. From the fourth edition (2011), the City of Yokohama became the primary organizer of the event and the Yokohama Museum of Art became one of its main venues. The Yokohama Triennale is a national project supported by the Ministry of Cultural Affairs, and also one that represents the ‘Culture, Art and Creative City Yokohama’.

Welcome to the renewed Yokohama Museum of Art

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