Kyoto Seishu Netsuke Art Museum Early Autumn Exhibition 2013: Motomasa Kurita

A new exhibition has opened at Kyoto Seishu Netsuke Art Museum, this time with works by talented young carver Motomasa Kurita.

Kyoto Seishu Netsuke Art Museum Early Autumn Exhibition of Motomasa Kurita Poster

Motomasa Kurita Early Autumn Exhibition Poster

Motomasa Kurita hails from Gunma Prefecture where, having initially studied oil painting, he followed in his father’s footsteps as a taxidermist. Kurita’s deep understanding of anatomy and love of nature inspired him to replicate animals, in ivory from 1998 onwards. He is known for his masterful depictions of birds — indeed, he raised birds of prey — and capturing their moment in flight. His talents were brought to the attention of veteran netsuke artist, Shingetsu Muramatsu, who became his teacher. Subsequently, Kurita became the youngest recipient of the Ministry of Trade and Industry’s award for his carvings and has continued to garner attention in the world of contemporary netsuke.

Kurita’s style can be described as “neo-classicist”: combining techniques passed down from the Edo Period with a modern sensibility. His material of choice is deer antler, which comes in plentiful supply from neighbouring Nara, where the remarkably tame creatures freely roam its parks. Among the 70 selected pieces on display in this exhibition are those of contrasting subject matter which the artist has recently turned his hand to: that of characters from ukiyo-e (“floating world”), Edo period woodblock prints, and Kabuki theatre.

nightfall motomasa kurita kyoto seishu netsuke art museum exhibition september 2013

“Nightfall” by Motomasa Kurita. One of my favourite pieces!

What are netsuke, you ask? Take a look at my previous post or check out the Netsuke Online Research Center.

Opening times: September 1-30, 2013 10:00-17:00 (last admission 16:30)
Address: 46-1 Mibukagyogosho-cho, Nakayagyo-ku, Kyoto 604-8811, Japan
Entry: Adults ¥1000, Junior high/ high school students ¥500.
Please note that children of elementary school age and below are not permitted inside the museum.
No photography is allowed inside the museum.

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