Suda Kunitaro, A Retrospective on the 50th Anniversary of his death, ‘Shadow and Radiance’

Period: July 21st to August 26th

Location: Museum of Modern Art, Ibaraki

Suda Kunitaro (1891-1961) majored in art history at Kyoto Teikoku University, while also studying drawing at the Kansai Art Institute. Later he studied in Spain and copied the post-Renaissance traditional paintings at places such as the Plado Museum, as well as visiting both historical and contemporary art museums around Europe.

Suda compared the pieces produced by Japanese painters who had absorbed the latest art in Paris as ‘cut flowers’, whereas he focused on the history and techniques of Western painting, the ‘roots’ and ‘stem’ as opposed to just the flower. His goal was that these should take root in Japan and bring about a uniquely Japanese style of oil painting.

What he ultimately achieved was a unique style using black as a base for rich, thick colors. We have attempted to express the way the profound shadows of his pieces seem to give off an unseen light from their depths by using the phrase ‘Shadows and Radiance’ for this exhibition. Suda’s unfailingly inquisitive mind and Japanese sense of emotion and aesthetics that ooze from his works seems to resonate within our hearts anew in this day and age.

Through the 120 of his main pieces showcased in this exhibition we will reflect on the profound artistic world of Suda Kunitaro.


Related Events:

Art Lecture – ‘Personal Expression in a Time of War, the Reality Seen in the Shadows’

Date: August 5th, 1:30pm

Instructor: Ozaki Masato, Head Curator of Kyoto City Museum

Location: Ground floor auditorium (free, limit 250 people)


Curator Talk

Date: August 11th, 1pm

Location: 2nd Floor Exhibition Hall (*ticket purchase required)


Art Lecture by the Curator

‘Reflecting on Suda Kunitaro and Modern Painting’

Date: August 19th, 1pm

Location: Ground floor auditorium (free, limit 250 people)


Children’s Open Workshop

Date: July 21st, 22nd, 28th, 29th, from 10am to noon and 1:30 to 3:30pm

Location: Ground floor lecture room


Museum Concert – ‘The World of Baroque Music, Recorder Master Eva Legene and Friends’

Date: August 3rd, doors open 6pm, curtain up at 6:30pm

Performers: Eva Legene (recorder), Maki Masayuki (harpsichord), Muraishi Tatsuya (violin), Miyazawa Hitoshi (cello)

Location: 1st floor entrance hall (free, limit 200 people, must register in advance by return postcard)


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