May 9, 2024 - Culture

MFA relaunches Japanese collection

A buddist temple

The Buddhist Temple room at the Museum of Fine Arts. Photo: Suzanne Kreiter/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

The Museum of Fine Arts is reopening its renovated Japanese art collection in new galleries starting Saturday.

Why it matters: The MFA holds about 100,000 pieces of Japanese art that provide a look at the rich artistic heritage of the country.

Arts of Japan takes visitors through seven centuries of Japanese art, from the 7th century to today.

  • The exhibit includes paintings, sculptures, decorative arts and prints.

A highlight of the exhibit is a six-panel folding screen by Ogata Kōrin that depicts islands and trees in golden waves.

  • Also on display is an articulated iron model of a dragon with gilding and a Fukai-type Nō mask.
  • The MFA features the largest collection of Japanese prints outside of Japan, with over 50,000 sheets from the 8th century to the present.

What's next: The MFA's Japanese Buddhist Temple room is being rededicated Saturday at 1pm by a delegation of monks from Miidera, one of Japan's largest temples.

  • The ritual will be simulcast to an auditorium in the museum.
  • Three early founders of the MFA's Japanese collection studied Tendai Esoteric Buddhism at Miidera and two are buried there.

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