Reopening on March 18, 2023 (Saturday) after 2 years and 3 months of renovation work!
About two years and three months have passed since the renovation work began in December 2020.
"Genbi", the Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art will have its long-awaited reopening on Saturday, March 18, 2023.
What has changed and how?
And what has not changed?
We will tell you the various charms of Gembi!
What kind of museum is Genbi?
"Genbi", the Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art opened on May 3, 1989, as the nation's first public art museum to engage in contemporary art in earnest.
The building, designed by architect Kisho Kurokawa, is located in the lush green Hijiyama Park overlooking the city and consists of an approach plaza reminiscent of an ancient European square and a triangular roof with an exterior reminiscent of a Japanese storehouse.
As one moves from the bottom to the top, the materials lightly change from natural stone, polished stone, tile, and aluminum to more modern materials, representing the development of civilization and the flow of time from the past to the future.
The Museum systematically collects and preserves outstanding works in each field according to three policies.
1. "Works that are important in showing the flow of contemporary art, mainly since World War II.
2."Works that show the relationship between Hiroshima and contemporary art.
3. "Excellent works by promising young artists.
A diverse lineup has introduced various movements in art in Japan and abroad, as well as contemporary expressions that expand the boundaries of art.
Exhibitions by Hiroshima Prize(*) winners such as Issey Miyake, Shirin Neshat, and Yoko Ono have also been held, and the "11th Hiroshima Prize Commemorative Exhibition by Alfredo Jah" is scheduled to open at the Corona Disaster Relief Center this July after being postponed.
*The Hiroshima Prize was established in 1989 by the City of Hiroshima to honor the achievements of artists who have contributed to human peace in the field of art, and to promote the "spirit of Hiroshima," the desire for lasting world peace, to the world at large through contemporary art.
Photo: SATOH PHOTO Kazunari Sato
Photo: SATOH PHOTO Kazunari Sato
Renewal points (What has and hasn't changed in Genbi ?)
This year marks 34 years since Genbi opened in 1989.
The original architectural design by architect Kisho Kurokawa was retained as much as possible, and only those parts that were impaired in function or strength were replaced to "restore functionality" where it had deteriorated over time and to "expand functionality" as required of a future museum.
Restore and enhance functionality in areas that have deteriorated over time
・To protect the valuable artworks, the roof and floor were replaced, and the drainage system was repaired.
・The lighting in the exhibition rooms was converted to LED to reduce the environmental impact and make the environment more suitable for exhibits.
・The outdoor stairway monument "my sky hole" (Bukichi Inoue) and monitors in the museum were restored to their original state.
Additional and expanded functions required for the museum of the future
・The newly added glass-walled open-air café "KAZE" next to the entrance and the multipurpose space "Moca Moca" that can be used for various purposes such as workshops, etc. are now open.
・The new building has a new elevator in the exhibition room, a new multipurpose toilet for everyone, a baby care room (nursing room), a kids' space, and other service functions.
The long, narrow space that was once a café has been transformed into the museum store "339 (Sansankyu).
・The basic font for the museum signage was changed to the more universal "Hiragino UD" font, and a pictogram combining the shape of the building was adopted.
Preserving and Reusing the Design
・The former location of the public phone has been rehabilitated as an exhibition space and flyer storage area, making use of the original design.
・The dark green serpentine stone used in the interior. The part of the building that had to be demolished to replace the elevator was reused with "terrazzo tile," an artificial marble of the same material.
・The round columns at the entrance actually turned out to be special ones that were difficult to reproduce due to their special coating! Although there were cracks, they were not deteriorated, so only cleaning was done and they were left as they were.
Trivia points! You'll enjoy Genbi more if you know this!
・The slit in the circular roof of the approach plaza (in the shape of the letter C) points in the direction of the hypocenter.
・The floor stones around the pillars and at the entrance of the approach plaza are made of A-bombed stones (garden stones from the former Hiroshima City Hall).
・The sound is heard differently in the center of the approach plaza.
・The numbers on the lockers are all in different font!
・The building has windows of various shapes, so look for them.
Reopening event, "Reopening Commemorative Special Exhibition Before/After
Shirin Neshat “Land of Dreams” 2019
Musings of the Artist and Gladstone Gallery
© Shirin Neshat
To celebrate the reopening, a special exhibition "Before / After" will be held using the entire building.
Comparing the before and after of the recent building renovations, some of the differences are obvious at first glance, while others are difficult to notice, but you may notice that they have changed if someone tell you.
This exhibition focuses on various "before" and "after" phenomena and situations, using "before/after" as a stepping stone, triggered by the renovation of the museum building.
The exhibition will feature approximately 100 works by 45 artists, including new works created specifically for this exhibition, and will be based on the collection that has been acquired to date.
From the collection, we will unveil for the first time a long-awaited new purchased work, the large-scale installation "Land of Dreams" by Shirin Neshat, which focuses on the theme of dreams and reality.
Don't miss it!
Advance tickets for "Reopening Commemorative Special Exhibition Before/After," which begins on Saturday, March 18, are now on sale.
Please visit the museum's official online store to purchase your tickets.
Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art Official Online Shop 339
On March 18 (Sat), the renewal event will include an opening ceremony, a workshop at the multipurpose space "moka moka," and talks by participating artists of the "Before / After" special exhibition.
For more information, please visit the official website of the Hiroshima Museum of Contemporary Art official website.
Koumiyuki “Stand Up!” Series “Running Dog, Floating Elephant” 2019
Setouchi Triennale 2019/Exhibition view at Shodoshima and Mito-peninsula
Left: Kei Takemura “Restored G. Museum Light Bulb” 2019
Right: Kei Takemura “Restored T. House Light Bulb” 2019 Photo: Shinya Kigure
Yokoyama Nami “LOVE” 2022
Photo: Hayato Wakabayashi
Bontaro Dokuyama “Long Way Home” 2022
© Bontaro DOKUYAMA
Naoya Hirata “Incursion Game” 2017
Ishiuchi Miyako “The Drowned #2》2020
Wishes of the Third Gallery Aya
© Ishiuchi Miyako
Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art Basic Information
[Opening hours] 10:00 - 17:00 ※Admission until 30 minutes before closing
Special exhibitions: Adults 1,600 yen (1,250 yen), college students 1,200 yen (900 yen), high school students 65 and over 800 yen (600 yen), middle school students and younger free
※ Advance sales and group rates for 30 people or more are shown in parentheses