The Ohara Museum of Art in Kurashiki City, Okayama Prefecture, was the very first museum in Japan that exhibited Western and modern art. It is a private museum founded by Ohara Magosaburo to commemorate Kojima Torajiro. Kojima was a talented western-style painter who dreamed to open a museum and to support young artists in Japan. Ohara became his patron and sponsored him to study in Europe. He collected art works for the museum from all over Europe, including the masterpieces of El Greco, Monet, Matisse, Cezanne, Gauguin, and Renoir, which are displayed in the Main Gallery of the Museum.
Kojima focused on the essence of art and he had a spirit typical of Meiji Era, struggling for a supreme ideology between western art and Japanese aesthetic sense. Kojima’s works can be seen in the Torajiro Kojima Memorial Hall. Other extended sections of the Ohara Museum are: the Annex, the Craft Art Gallery and the Asian Art Gallery. The Museum also organizes regular events including Art Lectures and Gallery Concerts by world-class artists and musicians.
Next to the Main Gallery, you will find the Annex building and a building hosting the Craft Art Gallery and the Asiatic Art Gallery. Within the Annex, you can explore a diverse collection of artworks created by Japanese artists, encompassing both oil paintings and sculptures. The Craft Art Gallery offers a captivating showcase of ceramics, woodblock prints, stencil dyeing, and various other crafts. Additionally, the Asiatic Art Gallery presents an array of fascinating artifacts from Egypt and antique treasures from China.
How to get to the Ohara Museum in Kurashiki City, Okayama
To get to the Ohara Museum in Kurashiki City, you can take the Sanyo Main Line from Okayama Station. The journey takes about 15 minutes. The Ohara Museum is located in the famous Bikan Historical Area, which is a short distance from Kurashiki Station. Once you arrive in the Bikan Historical Quarter, the Ohara Museum is easily recognizable with its European-inspired architecture.
Location: 1-1-15 Chuo,Kurashiki,Okayama, 710-8575
Admission: 2,000 JPY (Adult), 500 JPY (under 18)
Web: https://www.ohara.or.jp/en/ (English)
Hours: 9:00 am – 3:00 pm (December – February), 9:00 am – 5:00 pm (March – November)
*closed on Mondays (except for national holidays) and through the New Year Holiday