The Hara Museum of Contemporary Art was founded in 1979 under the auspices of the Foundation Arc-en-Ciel. The museum is housed in the former home of the Hara family and represents a rare example of Japanese early modern residential architecture. Designed by renowned architect, Jin Watanabe in 1938, the unique building reveals influences of the French-German architectural styles of the 1930’s. Together with its scenic sculpture garden, the museum offers an intimate setting for viewing contemporary art.
Reflecting the museum’s international orientation, the museum’s collection of about 1,000 works comprises a rich cross-section of works by leading and upcoming artists from around the world, focusing on the rich developments that have taken place in art from 1950s. These include paintings, sculptures, videos and installations. Noted artists in the Collection include Nobuyoshi Araki, Yayoi Kusama, Tatsuo Miyajima, Yasumasa Morimura, Yoshitomo Nara, Tadanori Yokoo, Ai Weiwei, Ufan Lee, Nam June Paik, Zhou Tiehai, Anselm Kiefer, Yves Klein, Robert Rauschenberg, and Jean-Pierre Raynaud. It has collaborated with major art institutions in presenting the works of internationally acclaimed artists. Also important has been the Hara Museum's support and presentation of Japanese artists who are active in the diverse fields of art.
The Museum’s Café d’art overlooking the sculpture garden offers a selection of delicious dishes as well as the original “Image Cake” especially prepared only during the exhibition period to match the theme of the exhibition. The delicious and eye-catching image cake may deepen your museum experience. The Museum Shop offers a full selection of museum and designer gift items (http://shop.haramuseum.or.jp). The Membership Program funds a variety of special programs, while its membership activities provide members with opportunities to more deeply enjoy contemporary art through guided tours, lectures, performances, and bus tours.
In 1988, Hara Museum ARC was opened in Shibukawa, Gunma Prefecture as an annex to the Hara Museum of Contemporary Art in Tokyo. Designed by an architect Arata Isozaki, the large-scale wooden building exhibits an expansiveness that matches its highland locale. Its sleek exterior stands in stark contrast to the surrounding greenery. In 2008, which coincides with the 20th anniversary of Hara Museum ARC, the Kankai Pavilion (opened in July 27, supervised by Isozaki) was built, which serves as a permanent venue for the Hara Rokuro Collection of traditional East Asian art. Comprising some 120 works, the Hara Rokuro Collection mainly consists of traditional Japanese paintings, but also includes crafts, calligraphy, and some Chinese art. One work has been designated a National Treasure (Celadon vase with long neck on globular body, Longquan ware, Southern Song dynasty, 13th century) and another an Important Cultural Property (Female passing through a reed portiere, two-fold screen, Edo period, 17th century) by the Japanese government. By incorporating aspects of the old Japanese shoin style, the pavilion combines both the old and new in a way that harmonizes with the pre-existing space. Also, its unique spotlight on traditional art promises to add a new dimension to the museum’s focus which till now has been exclusively contemporary art.
Daily (including weekends and public holidays) 11am - 5pm [until 8pm on Wed. (except national holidays]
Closed on Mon (Tue if Mon is a public holiday), year-end holidays, and between exhibitions. Last entry 30 min. before closing