This study represents joint research on Yokoyama Taikan’ s Yamaji with Eisei Bunko that took place as part of a Department of Art Research, Archives, and Information Systems research project entitled Documentary research on cultural properties. Taikan’s Yamaji in Eisei Bunko’s collection was exhibited at the 5th Bunten Art Exhibition (sponsored by the Ministry of Education) in 1911 and is an important work that inaugurated new forms of expression in Japanese painting with its vivid strokes. After the work was studied last fall, a variant of Yamaji in The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto was studied on May 29. Following the work that was exhibited at Bunten, the variant was painted by Taikan for Hara Sankei, a well-known Yokohama industrialist and avid collector of artwork. A letter of thanks from Taikan for receipt of payment addressed to Sankei dated February 6, 1912 remains. With the cooperation of Ogura Jitsuko of The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto, the current study by Miyake Hidekazu of Eisei Bunko, Shioya Jun of the Institute, and Arai Kei, Taira Yuichirou, and Ogawa Ayako (Tokyo University of the Arts) used near-infrared reflectance photography and X-ray fluorescence analysis to examine paints in the piece. A study of the Bunten piece last fall revealed that Taikan actively used modern pigments. Taikan was found to use modern pigments in the piece that was formerly in the Hara Sankei Collection. Although this piece had the same motif as the Bunten piece, some of its colors differed due to the use of different pigments. The Bunten piece is current being repaired and plans are to study it again when it is unveiled.
|■Tokyo National Research Institute for Cultural Properties||■Center for Conservation Science|
|■Department of Art Research, Archives and Information Systems||■Japan Center for International Cooperation in Conservation|
|■Department of Intangible Cultural Heritage|
Holding of the Japan-South Korea Symposium on “The Dynamics of Interaction between Objects and People—‘Evaluation’ in Art History”
Having already been held at the Tokyo National Research Institute for Cultural Properties (Tobunken) on February 27, 2011, the Japan-South Korea Symposium on “The Dynamics of Interaction between Objects and People—‘Evaluation’ in Art History,” organized to mark the publication of the 30th Issue of “Art History Forum” and the 400th Issue of “Art Studies (the Bijutsu Kenkyu),” was held again on March 12, 2011 in the Audiovisual Room of Ewha Womans University Museum in Seoul.
The Symposium began with a keynote speech by Atsushi Tanaka, Director of the Department of Art Research, Archives, and Information Systems at Tobunken, on the topic of “Creation and Evaluation—An Examination Focused on ‘Woman with a Balloon’ by Tetsugoro Yorozu.” This was followed by the same speakers as at the Symposium held in Tokyo: Minoru Watada (Department of Art Research, Archives, and Information systems, Tobunken) on “Landscape Scroll Paintings—A Reevaluation of Sesshu Toyo”; Chang Chin-Sung (Seoul National University) on “The Fallacy of Love—An Evaluation and Narrative of Jeong Seon”; Tomoko Emura (Department of Art Research, Archives, and Information Systems, Tobunken) on “The Expressionist World of Early Edo Period Fuzoku-ga (Genre Paintings)”; Moon Jung Hee (Center for Art Studies, Seoul) on “Shitao, as Viewed in Terms of Modern Personality-focused Evaluation.”
Although the Symposium in Seoul was held on the day after the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011, when people were anxious about the destruction caused by the earthquake, the number of people attending the Symposium was so high that there were not enough seats for everyone; it was even more of a success than the Toyko Symposium. There was a discussion session chaired by Professor Jeong Gang-tak (Dongguk University) during which the speakers answered questions on their presentations, and the differing attitudes towards art history research in Japan and South Korea were discussed, making this a discussion session truly befitting an international symposium seeking to build bridges across national boundaries.
Yokoyama Taikan, a giant of modern Japanese-style paintings, painted “Yamaji” when he was 43 years old (in 1911, stored by Eisei-Bunko Museum and deposited by Kumamoto Prefectural Museum of Art). It is an important piece in which Taikan heavily used the “touches”, a reputed technique consisting of the blending of the Western impressionist school and the Southern school of Chinese painting at the time the piece was made public. It was the vanguard of the ‘new Nanga-style painting’, prevalent in the Taisho Period, escaped from the hazy style attempted by Taikan in the Meiji 30’s (1897). In addition, Mr. Arai Kei (Tokyo University of the Arts) recently pointed out that ‘Yamaji’ likely used mineral pigments, which were new at that time. This painting is thus noteworthy even when examining the materials used in Japanese style paintings during the era.
On the occasion of the restoration of “Yamaji”, the Eisei-Bunko Museum, which owns the painting, and our Institute will begin joint research, conducting many-sided investigational studies with Mr. Miyake Hidekazu of the Museum. To start with, on October 10th, we conducted near-infrared reflectance photography and qualitative analysis using the fluorescent X-ray analysis method at the Kumamoto Prefectural Museum of Art where ‘Yamaji’ has been deposited This was done together with Mr. Arai mentioned above, Mr. Taira Yuichiro (Tokyo University of the Arts) and Ms. Ogawa Ayako (Tokyo University of the Arts), in cooperation with Mr. Hayashida Ryuta at the Kumamoto Prefectural Museum of Art. The result of research revealed that ‘Yamaji’ consisted of an abundant amount of modern pigments, which are different from conventional pigments. The restoration will continue for a period of one year. We will gather the obtained survey results; the progression status of the restoration, and various types of information that include reviews from the time the work was made public. We would like to release such items publicly as fundamental materials.
The Department of Research Programming received a donation of part of the materials owned by Mr. Sato Tamotsu, a Japanese-style painter, who died in 2004, from his wife Ms. Kiyoko. He broke new ground in postwar Japanese-style painting with his series of Mizubasho (Skunk cabbage) Mandala paintings that abstractly express skunk cabbages using bold circular arcs with sumi (Indian ink) lines. The donated materials include art journals and catalogs of the art group Chikyukai he set up with his colleagues in 1957 and various art groups. They have been delivered to the Institute, and we will organize the precious materials of postwar Japanese art so that they can be browsed and utilized.
Last year, the National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo held the 32nd International Symposium on the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Property, called “Capturing the ‘Original’: Archives for Cultural Properties.” After an editing period of a full year, we are now proud to publish a report on that symposium. It includes presentations and discussions by 26 national and international researchers, and explores how we should convey cultural properties while intending to maintain ‘original’ as it is. See the Department of Research Programming’s page for the titles of each publication.
The contemporary artist Fukuda Miran created a mirror image of Hokusai’s famous “The Great Wave off Kanagawa,” which is part of his “Thirty-Six Views of Mt. Fuji” series. Miran’s work is used as the front cover of the publication, and was also used as the public relations image of the symposium.
This publication is commercially available from Heibonsha under the title of “Capturing the ‘Original’: Conveying Cultural Properties.”
Workshop: Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures and Archives of Cultural Heritages in the UK
The Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures was established in Norwich, in the eastern part of the UK, in 1999. It is developing activities as a base for research on Japanese arts and cultures. The Institute’s Lisa Sainsbury Library stores books and materials on Japanese arts and cultures. Among them there are collections on the ceramic artist, Bernard Leach, and the art history researcher, Yanagisawa Taka. The Yanagisawa collection has strong ties with the National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo, where she worked. On February 25, the Department of Research Programming of this Institute and the Art Documentation Society co-hosted the workshop “Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures and Archives of Cultural Heritages in the UK” in the seminar room of the Institute. Mr. Hirano Akira, a librarian at the Lisa Sainsbury Library, was invited to participate. Mr. Hirano introduced the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts, and reported on the study of Japan in the UK. He also discussed the network of Japanese studies in Europe. Mr. Morishita Masaaki (a visiting researcher from the Department of Research Programming of the National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo) and Ms. Idemitsu Sachiko (a curator from the Idemitsu Museum of Arts), who have experience in conducting research based at the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures, joined in the discussions as panelists. They developed topics on the real experience of researching Japanese art in overseas countries and the current status of the archives on contemporary art in Europe. The discussions with general participants revealed that it is difficult for people in overseas countries to view the bulletins, theses and exhibition catalogs at Japanese universities, art galleries and museums, and gave us another opportunity to understand the real issues with their computerization and international cooperation.
Since the Institute opened in 1930, it has collected and arranged materials concerning cultural heritage. We are making efforts to catalog them so they can be released to public and viewed; however, among the materials which we have accumulated over nearly 80 years, there are some materials which have not been released for public viewing and have not been arranged. Kijishu by Imaizumi Yusaku, introduced in this article, is one of the works which has been in obscurity for a long time. Mr. Imaizumi Yusaku (1850 – 1931) worked for the Education Ministry, Tokyo Fine Arts School (current Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music) and Tokyo National Museum, and sustained the art administration of modern Japan together with Okakura Tenshin. Kijishu is Imaizumi’s autobiographical diary collection, dated from 1887 to 1913 and totaling 38 volumes in all. In these diaries he recoded the art works he appraised and investigated in detail with his sketches. These diaries were found by Mr. Yoda Toru (Saitama City Culture Promotion Agency) who was a student at that time, during an arrangement of materials. The authenticity was confirmed by Ms. Yoshida Chizuru, a visiting researcher at our Institute, who already had records through her research of Imaizumi Yusaku. Ms. Yoshida is now writing a new work about Kijishu, and made an interim report at the workshop of Department of Research Programming on September 30. Imaizumi’s records of wide-ranging antiquities have attracted great interest of researchers majoring in various fields, and we have recognized the importance thereof.
(Sino-Japanese War Graphics Vol. 10)
From “Drawing and Painting Soldiers from the Edges of the Japan-China War Battlefront and Art” (Kawada Akihisa) There were many drawing and painting soldiers in the battle area of the Japan-China War, and their artworks were widely known as a war pictures with reality.
The Department of Research Programming has issued the collected papers of 26 domestic researchers, as shown in the title above. This document is an achievement of the project study “Integrated research on modern and contemporary art.” As a research edition of “A Study of Exhibits from Art Exhibitions of the Showa Era – Pre-World War II Volume”, basic data compilation issued in 2006, the trends of art before World War II are shown from the viewpoints of each researcher from various perspectives. The document targets the various genres of paintings and sculptures, engravings, photographs, and art works based on trend of the exhibits and art galleries, and it also includes themes particular to the pre-World War II period, such as proletarian art and war pictures. Please examine the various issues regarding art in the Showa Era. We hope that they will offer you new findings and help you to raise awareness of the issues involved.
Refer to the pages issued by the Department of Research Programming for the titles of papers and the authors.
This document is available from Chuokoron Art Publishers. http://www.chukobi.co.jp/products/detail.php?product_id=383
For three days from December 6 to 8, 2008, the National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo hosted the 32nd International Symposium on the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Properties entitled Capturing the Original: Archives for Cultural Properties in the Heiseikan Auditorium of the Tokyo National Museum. The purpose of this symposium was to consider how “original” cultural properties may be transmitted to posterity without affecting their essential value. Presentations were given and discussions were held by 25 persons, including 5 persons from overseas (USA, UK and Taiwan).
In Session 1 (“Confronting Objects/’Originals’”) on the first day, the fundamental stance towards cultural properties was re-examined, seriously considering those objects deemed to be “original”. In Session 2 (“’Originals’ beyond Objects”) on the second day, various matters that remind people of “originals”, either those that remain or materials related to them, were chosen as topics. In Session 3 (“Handing over ‘Originals’”) on the final day, ways of operating archives for cultural properties that support and transfer the originals were examined, based on the discussions up to that point.
A total of 281 participants attended the symposium during the three days. There was great interest in the theme of the symposium, which especially sought to capture “originals” from the standpoint of archives for cultural properties. Although focus was placed on Japanese and East Asian art, western aesthetics, contemporary art, and intangible cultural properties were also considered. The Department of Research Programming, which is in charge of the Institute’s archives, served as secretariat for this symposium. There were numerous matters to be considered regarding how cultural properties should be documented while focusing on the original. The Department will continue to deal with these big topics. A detailed report of the presentations and discussions will be published next year.
As mentioned in the monthly report of last July, October 9 we started to exhibit the “Lakeside” painted (in 1993) by Fukuda Miran, a contemporary artist, in Tokyo National Museum’s Kuroda Memorial Hall. This exhibition was in conjunction with the international symposium, Capturing the Original: Archives for Cultural Properties that will be held on December 6 – 8. This exhibit will continue until December 25. This event, entitled Lakeside Versus Lakeside, exhibits the work Fukuda Miran created based on Lakeside, the representative work Kuroda Seiki, a western painter in Meiji era, along with the original, which is in the permanent exhibition in Kuroda Memorial Hall. Fukuda Miran – a spirited contemporary artist – creates works using the fine arts of all ages and cultures as base materials, and is known for his creative activities that shake up the original images. Fukuda’s Lakeside extends the background of Kuroda’s Lakeside for painting, possibly upsetting the image of the celebrated picture that is so familiar in schoolbooks and stamps. It also prompts viewers to look at the original work from a new angle. Visitors looked puzzled, but nevertheless seemed to enjoy the contrast of Kuroda’s Lakeside and Fukuda’s Lakeside, which are exhibited facing each other across the hallway.
On October 8, we held an internal workshop at the Department of Research Programming with an eye toward the international symposium with the presentation of Mr. Morishita Masaaki, a visiting researcher of the Institute. In the presentation Issues Surrounding Art Museums and Originals: Contemporary Art, Mr. Morishita introduced activities which surpass the artwork concept of objects produced by traditional artists, mainly focusing on contemporary art in England. It highlighted one issue of contemporary museums: how those activities are to be conveyed.
While the works tend to be abstracted, we are deeply interested in the activities of the International Network for the Conservation of Contemporary Art (INCCA), which attempts to showcase the contemporary scene, particularly by recording interviews with writers and others as contemporary models for conserving works of art.
The Department of Research Programming is working steadily to prepare for the international symposium entitled “Capturing the ‘Original’ -Archives for Cultural Property” to be held this coming December. On July 7, a meeting of the organizing committee was held with the attendance of Professor Asai Kazuharu of Aoyama Gakuin University, Professor Kato Tetsuhiro of Kwansei Gakuin University, Mr. Kuroda Taizo of Idemitsu Museum of Arts, Professor Sano Midori of Gakushuin University and Mr. Matsumoto Toru of The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo as special advisors. They expressed valuable opinions on the holding of the symposium. Negotiations and adjustments have been nearly completed with each speaker at the symposium. For information on the aim of the symposium and detailed program, please visit the section of the Institute’s website dedicated to the symposium “http://www.tobunken.go.jp/info/sympo08/index.html” Ms. Fukuda Milan has given permission to use her work (36 Views of Mt. Fuji: The Great Wave off Kanagawa) as PR image for the symposium. Ms. Fukuda is a modern artist who, since the 1990s, has produced works based on past works by artists all over the world and of all ages. Her artistic activities are devoted to modulating the conventional images of these “originals.” Her 36 Views of Mt. Fuji: The Great Wave off Kanagawa is also based on a famous ukiyoe print by Hokusai, but shows the original after reversing it 180 degrees from right to left. Due to this treatment, the work gives an impression that is still familiar, but mysteriously strange. Another work of Ms. Fukuda, based on the famous painting Lakeside by Kuroda Seiki, will be exhibited alongside the original at Kuroda Memorial Hall from October 9 (Thur.) to December 25 (Thur.), as a feature related to the symposium. Visitors will surely enjoy the collaboration by the original and its “copy.”
Mitsutani Kunishiro as an advocate of Goseda Studio – from his drawings formerly in the collection of the Art Research Institute
Mitsutani Kunishiro (1874?1936) is known as a western-style painter many of whose works were exhibited at the Bunten (exhibition by the then Ministry of Education) and the Teiten (exhibition by the Imperial Academy of Fine Artｓ) in Meiji, Taisho and Showa periods. Sketches he left were donated in 1938 to the Art Research Institute, the predecessor of the Institute. Most of them were landscape sketches called “Doro sansui” (road landscape) in the Meiji period and drawings for his works created during the Taisho period and displayed at exhibitions. Among them, one portrait drawn in pencil stands out prominently. In this sketch, the technique of cross-hatching is used where thin lines are crossed to flesh out the motif, and the face staring at us with one eye half-closed is full of self-consciousness. Since this work was innovative not only among Mitsutani’s works but also in the history of western-style paintings in the Meiji period, it had not been introduced until now. However, Mr. Tsunoda Takuro of the Kanagawa Prefectural Museum of Cultural History and Mr. Hirose Naruhisa of the Okayama Prefectural Museum of Art, in the process of their researches on Goseda Horyu/Yoshimatsu Studio that left a major mark on the western-style paintings in early part of the Meiji period, pointed out the possibility that this work may be positioned in that stream. They made a presentation on this topic at the seminar of the Department of Research Programming held on May 7. The date written on the bottom left corner of the drawing ? February 21 of the 25th year of Meiji (1892) – corresponds to the short period of only one year when Mitsutani learned as a pupil of Goseda school. This drawing may be positioned as a link between Goseda Studio and Mitsutani, and also as a work that may cause a stir in the art history of the Meiji period. This work, along with sketchbooks filled with similar portrayals using cross-hatching, will be exhibited in “All about the Goseda Studio -A Bridge to Modern Paintings in Japan” (August 9 – 31 and September 6 – 28, 2008 at the Kanagawa Prefectural Museum of Cultural History, and October 7 – November 9, 2008 at the Okayama Prefectural Museum of Art).
Lakeside (1897), Kuroda Seiki’s oil painting of a woman wearing yukata (summer cotton kimono) by a lakeside, may be said to be one of the most popular works of Japanese art. The Department of Research Programming has published Kuroda Seiki‘s Lakeside, Artwork Archive for Art Studies, Volume 5, which studies this representative work by Kuroda from many aspects. Images of Lakeside at the beginning of the book photographed by Shirono Seiji and Torimitsu Mikako (National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo) include life-size images of the details of the painting and an image of the reverse side of the painting, which cannot be seen ordinarily, thus giving a fresh impression to a familiar work of art. Papers by Arayashiki Toru (Pola Museum of Art, Pola Art Foundation), Ueno Kenzo (Ishibashi Museum of Art, Ishibashi Art Foundation), Kaneko Kazuo (Ibaraki University), Suzuki Yasuhiro (Board of Education Secretariat, Hakone Town), Watanabe Ichiro (Art Restoration Studio 21), Tanaka Atsushi and Yamanashi Emiko (both of the National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo) cover various topics related to the work, from the identity of the model and the place where the painting was created to the position the work occupies in the world of Japanese and Western art, the changes in its evaluation until today and the condition of the work. At the end of the book is a collection of texts and images associated with Lakeside, an image of a sheet of memorial stamps issued in 1967 and a poem on the painting. This is a publication that presents the “life” of Lakeside from its birth until today. The book is published from Chuo Koron Bijutsu Shuppan and is available at bookstores.
As part of the research project “Research on Materials for the Study of East Asian Art,” the Department of Research Programming has been studying the relationship between man and objects under the theme of “Dynamics of Interaction between Objects and People.” The aim of the study is to see how the connection among people plays a role in the value formation of objects such as works of art and cultural properties. On Tuesday, January 15, we invited Dr. Chen Fang-mei of the Graduate Institute of Art History of the National Taiwan University, who contributed to our Department’s periodical, Bijutsu Kenkyu (The Journal of Art Studies) volume 391, a paper on how ancient bronzes were appreciated in Sung dynasty China.
In her presentation entitled “The Issue of the Sacred Space Constructed at: Yinshan Temple at Danshuei and Ethnological Awareness: A Study of Art in the Social Context,” Dr. Chen spoke about how the thoughts of the Han people who immigrated to Taiwan from the end of the 18th to the beginning of the 19th centuries, especially that of the Hakka people from Tingzhou in western Fujian province, were given form. Although a minority group, these people erected Yinshan Temple at Danshuei in northern Taiwan. Dr. Chen confirmed that the arrangement and decorations of the temple complex are reminiscent of what existed in their place of origin, Tingzhou. The subject of the presentation was concerned with the history of pre-modern Taiwan, with which we are not so familiar, but the assertion of identity associated with migrating people was in line with the theme of our study and discussions on the question of self-expression of minority groups followed the presentation.
Workshop for the publication of A Study of Exhibits from Art Exhibitions of the Showa Era (Pre-World War II Volume)
As a part of the research project “Comprehensive Research on Modern and Contemporary Art,” the Department of Research Programming is working toward the publication in fiscal year 2008 of A Study of Exhibits from Art Exhibitions of the Showa Era (Pre-World War II Volume), a collection of articles on art of pre-World War II Showa period. A workshop was held on December 27 in relation to this publication. Following is a list of presenters and the titles of their presentations.
Kita Takaomi (Aizu Museum, Waseda University): “Yabe Tomoe and the Proletarian Art Movement – Focusing on the Proletarian Art Institute”
Adachi Gen (Graduate School, Tokyo National University of Fine Arts): “’Akujo’ and War – The World of Comics by Ono Saseo”
Shikida Hiroko (The University Art Museum, Tokyo National University of Fine Arts): “A Study of Minimal Residences in Japan during the First Half of the Showa Period – Designing Activities of the Keiji-kobo and Its Associates”
As the presentations were made by young researchers, their contents that covered such challenging, not-yet well studied fields like proletarian art, comics and design were fresh innovative and stimulating. Although most of the presenters and participants were contributors to A Study of Exhibits from Art Exhibitions of the Showa Era (Pre-World War II Volume), close to 30 researchers participated and held heated discussions based on the presentations. There is no question that this workshop served as a good impetus for the publication.
(top) before the Meiji restoration (1897)
During the restoration in 1897, the building in front of the Hondo was dismantled, causing debate about reproduction
The Department of Research Programming holds workshops on “the original” in preparation for the International Symposium on the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Property which it will host next fiscal year. In the November workshop emphasis was placed on architecture. Inaba Nobuko and Shimizu Shin’ichi of the Japan Center for International Cooperation in Conservation joined the discussions, the former on the 14th and the latter on the 21st. Unlike paintings and sculptures which are carefully conserved indoors, buildings are exposed to the elements or are necessarily subjected to repeated repairs and renovations because they are used as residences and facilities. In addition to such characteristic of buildings, that they are subject to change, the differences in the materials employed, be it wood or stone, call for different maintenance methods. This in turn creates differences in the concept for their conservation among different cultures in which different materials are prevalent. The question as to which form of a building in which period of its history and using what type of materials is to be handed down – in other words, the question of authenticity, is a topic for endless discussion.
There were not many researchers like Pelliot who investigated the documents in the caves where they were actually discovered.
Preparations are being made now at the Department of Research Programming for the International Symposium on the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Property that the Department will hold next fiscal year. After repeated discussions among members of the Department concerning the theme for this Symposium, it has been decided to look at cultural properties again with “the original” as the key word. For instance, although in the world of cultural properties “the original” is always an object of admiration, as is evident in activities related with reproduction, people’s understanding of what “the original” means varies from time to time and region to region. In such circumstances, we hope to tackle the question of how we are to transmit cultural properties to others, especially from the point of view of cultural archives with which the Department is concerned.
As a result of five discussions held before establishing the theme, it was decided to hold workshops on matters associated with “the original.” The first meeting was held on September 26 and Nakano Teruo (Department of Research Programming) presented a case study on the authenticity of documents on Dunhuang. These documents were found stacked in big piles at the Dunhuang Mogao Grottoes in 1900 but were later taken out of China repeatedly by adventurers and researchers from abroad. For this reason there are confusions concerning these documents, including the question of their authenticity. The group then held discussions on Dunhuang studies with Kato Masato of the Center for Conservation Science and Restoration Techniques serving as a commentator. On October 3, the group discussed the differences in the concept of “the original” between tangible and intangible cultural properties, focusing on bunraku and other classic performing arts, with Ijima Mitsuru of the Department of Intangible Cultural Heritage. In this discussion it was confirmed that in the case of intangible cultural properties the “original” is a matter that cannot be ignored in transmitting cultural properties for there is always the question of what is “the original” – is the way of the first performance in past history “the original” or is each performance considered “the original”? We hope to hold workshops on this theme from time to time and to develop them into the International Symposium next year.
As a part of its research project “Comprehensive Research on Modern and Contemporary Art,” the Department of Research Programming is making preparations toward the publication of A Study of Art Exhibitions of the Showa Era (Pre-World War II) in 2008. This publication is a collection of articles on major art exhibitions held during the pre- World War Showa era, the data of whose exhibits have been published in 2006 in the Catalogue of Exhibits from Art Exhibitions of the Showa Era (Pre-World War II volume). Editorial meetings were held twice, in September 2006 and May 2007, and arrangements were made with prospective authors. Consequently, a total of 29 authors, most of whom are young researchers, have been asked to contribute articles from the point of view of their respective disciplines. At the core are the trends of exhibitions and art groups. But various genres such as paintings and sculpture, prints, photographs, craft art as well as themes particular to pre-World War II Showa era, such as proletariat art and war art, will be covered. Thanks to significant development in research in recent years, it appears that this publication will be a substantial study both quantitatively and qualitatively. We plan to hold workshops by the authors in order to exchange opinions so that the publication may be of high quality.