2016 / Bowers Museum presenting bamboo sculpture exhibition, Sep 19 – Jan. 3

Bowers Museum Bamboo Art

Uematsu Chikuyu, Sound of Wind, 1991. Bamboo (madake), rattan, lacquer. Courtesy of Bowers Museum. Photo © Susan Einstein.

Bowers Museum

Modern Twist: Contemporary Japanese Bamboo Art

Sept. 19, 205  – Jan. 3, 2016

Bamboo is a quintessential part of Japanese culture, shaping the country’s social, artistic, and spiritual landscape. Although bamboo is an abundant natural resource, it is a challenging artistic medium with less than 100 professional bamboo artists in Japan today.

Mastering the art form requires decades of meticulous practice learning how to harvest, split, and plait the bamboo. Modern Twist brings 17 of these artists to North American audiences, and their 38 works display a mastery of the supreme technical skills inherent in their innovative and imaginatively crafted sculptures.

In the last 100 years, the creativity and talent of bamboo basket makers has elevated their status from artisans to artists.

Since 1967, Japanese government has named six bamboo artists as Living National Treasures. Two Living National Treasures Shoho Katsushiro and Noboru Fujinuma are represented in Modern Twist by their pieces.

Modern Twist is an exhibition exploring the innovative shape bamboo art has taken since the mid-twentieth century. Curated by Dr. Andreas Marks, Minneapolis Institute of Arts and organized by International Arts and Artists, Modern Twist features a stunning selection of works from the Clark Center for Japanese Art and Culture.

With rare wall-hung installations and pieces never before seen in the United States, this exhibition both engages and educates audiences about a vibrant cultural art form.


Transitional Beauty of Japanese Calligraphy

Saturday, Sept.19, 12:00 pm — 1:00 pm, John M. Lee Court

Japan’s Kanji can be enjoyed without understanding the meaning. Calligrapher Shoran Ohba’s mission is to bring this beautiful art form to the world.


On the Verandah: Approach & Observation in Contemporary Japanese Art

Saturday, Sept.19, 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm, Kershaw Auditorium

Hirokazu Kosaka, Artistic Director of Japanese American Cultural and Community Center, Los Angeles, explores the Japanese concepts of space and perception and their connection to one’s experience of art.


Bonsai Tradition: Cultural Arts of Japan

Sept. 23 – 27, John M. Lee Court

Bower’s annual display celebrating the traditions and cultural arts of Japan will be presented in partnership with Kofu Bonsai Kai in Orange County.

Bowers Museum is located at 2002 North Main Street, Santa Ana, CA 92706. www.bowers.org  Closed Monday.