Exhibits

The information about exhibits, provided in this calendar, is intended to introduce Japan-related events in the Greater Boston, and New England area.

For all non-JSB-organized exhibits please check directly with the organization producing it to confirm all times, dates and event details. The Japan Society of Boston is not responsible for any changes or inaccuracies in information about events not sponsored by the JSB.

For information about special events, check out our All Events page.

Upcoming events

    • 30 Sep 2017
    • 03 Jun 2018
    • Museum of Fine Arts, Japanese Print Gallery (Gallery 278A), Avenue of the Arts, 465 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115


    Black and White:
    Japanese Modern Art

    September 30, 2017 – June 3, 2018

    Museum of Fine Arts, Japanese Print Gallery (Gallery 278A), Avenue of the Arts,
    465 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115

    Centered around a newly acquired, large-scale calligraphy by Inoue Yūichi (1916–85), this exhibition showcases a selection of avant-garde works in the monochrome aesthetic shared widely in Japan and beyond during the postwar period. This sensibility is rooted in Zen Buddhism, which values simplicity and austerity, and remains influential today. The works in the exhibition are the results of transnational exchanges between Japanese artists like Inoue and their American Expressionist contemporaries, including Franz Kline and Jackson Pollock, who drew inspiration from Asian calligraphy for their gestural paintings. Among the nine works on view are prints, ceramics and sculpture, primarily drawn from the MFA’s collection.

    • 18 Oct 2017
    • 01 Apr 2018
    • Museum of Fine Arts, Ann and Graham Gund Gallery (Gallery LG31), Avenue of the Arts, 465 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115

    Takashi Murakami:
    Lineage of Eccentrics

    A Collaboration with Nobuo Tsuji and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

    October 18, 2017–April 1, 2018

    Museum of Fine Arts, Ann and Graham Gund Gallery (Gallery LG31), Avenue of the Arts, 465 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115

    Contemporary works by Takashi Murakami, one of the most imaginative and important artists working today, are juxtaposed with treasures from the MFA’s renowned collection of Japanese art. The exhibition reveals how Murakami’s contemporary vision is richly inflected by a dynamic conversation with the historical past, framed by a creative dialogue with the great Japanese art historian, Professor Nobuo Tsuji. Together, Murakami and Professor Tsuji have chosen the objects on view in the exhibition, including paintings and sculpture created by the artist in direct response to Japanese masterpieces from the MFA’s collection, such as Soga Shōhaku’s 36-foot-long Dragon and Clouds (1763), and the Heiji Scroll (second half of the 13th century)—one of the most famous Japanese works of art outside of Japan.

    • 02 Jan 2018
    • 31 Jan 2018
    • Boston Children's Museum, Japanese House, 308 Congress St., Boston, MA 02210

    おみくじ Try O-mikuji & Get Your Own New Year’s Fortune!

    January 2 - January 31, 2018

    Boston Children's Museum, Japanese House,
    308 Congress St., Boston, MA 02210



    O-mikuji is a method of fortune telling found in shrines and temples in Japan.  O-mikuji comes in the form of paper slips, which contain predictions of one’s general fortune, health, love, business, finance, relationships, academic progress, etc.  Sometimes Japanese people use o-mikuji to find out what to look for and what to avoid in the future, or simply test one’s luck. Results of o-mikuji fortunes usually come in several levels.  

    In the Japanese House this month, shake the omikuji box, pull out the fortune stick and find out your fortune for 2018! 

    During the busy days, they will have the guided tours of the Japanese House to accommodate the crowds. During the busy times, they will not have the activity in the Japanese House in order to accommodate the crowds.

    Japanese House has limited hours. Please check the specific hours on the day of your visit.
    • 23 Jan 2018
    • 23 Mar 2018
    • Malden Public Library, 36 Salem St., Malden, MA 02148


    Lasting Impressions of Japan: Hokusai & Hiroshige and Beyond

    January 23 – March 23, 2018

    Exhibition Hours: Mondays 6:00-8:00PM, Wednesdays 2:00-4:00PM, Saturdays 2:00-4:00PM

    Malden Public Library
    36 Salem St., Malden, MA 02148

    This will be the first exhibition of these historic ukiyo-e prints by Hiroshige, Hokusai, Kunisada and Kuniyoshi, purchased by the library in 1912, in over one-hundred years.  The exhibition also includes stunning examples of Japanese traditional dress and ceramic art, including formal, semi-formal, and casual kimono, haori jackets from the collections of the Malden Historical Society. 

    The woodblock ukiyo-e prints show images of everyday Japan and were mass-produced for popular consumption in the Edo period (1615-1868).  Brought to Europe and America, these prints influenced many Western artists, including Monet and Van Gogh; as well as the creators of our popular manga and anime series.  Among the treasured prints exhibited are works by Katsushika Hokusai, best known for his work “Great Wave off the Coast of Kanagawa” or “The Great Wave” from his series Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji.

    The exhibition is a collaboration between the Malden Public Library and the Malden Historical Society.

    For more information or group tours call 781-324-0218.

    • 01 Feb 2018
    • 28 Feb 2018
    • Museum of Fine Arts, Avenue of the Arts, 465 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115

    The Boston Festival of Films from Japan

    February 1 – February 28, 2018

    Museum of Fine Arts, Avenue of the Arts, 465 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115

    MFA Film is thrilled to present a vibrant new annual festival showcasing the very best recent films produced in Japan. This year’s lineup includes the live-action manga adaptation Blade of the Immortal, the 100th feature film from provocative and prolific director Takashi Miike, and the Boston premiere of the timely documentary Resistance at Tule Lake (2017), which chronicles a 1943 uprising at a Japanese concentration camp in California.

    The festival kicks off February 1 with a free screening of Your Name (2016), an anime feature with gorgeous imagery and deep emotional resonance that quickly became one of the most popular films of all time in Japan. The 7:30 pm screening will be preceded by a celebration in the MFA’s Linde Family Wing for Contemporary Art, starting at 6 pm and featuring live music by DJ Ian Condry, art-making activities and Japanese candies and confections at Taste Café. Free tickets for the event can be reserved starting at 10 am on January 30 and will grant attendees free admission to Takashi Murakami: Lineage of Eccentrics before and after the film screening.

    With the exception of the opening night screening of Your Name on February 1, tickets for BFFJ films are $9 for MFA members and $11 for nonmembers, and will be available starting January 18.

    For these stories and more, visit the MFA for the first ever Boston Festival of Films from Japan!

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