This Art Museum was founded by Teruko HIRAMATSU (*2) and Wataru FUKI (*3) in 1987. They succeeded, in spirit, avant-garde artist Kazuo Sakata (*1), the pioneer of abstract painting in Japan. The present building was constructed in 1999.
This museum runs "Organized Exhibitions" for potential contemporary artists through the support of the Museum's membership all over Japan. This system emulates the Kunstverein, a German organization for enlightenment in contemporary art.
Achievements : Exhibitions supported by: the German Culture Center; Officina Cultural de la Embajada de Espana en Tokio, and the Embassy of Sweden; an exhibition by intellectually impaired exhibitors "Joyful・Art ", and various photos, Sculpture, Installation, and other exhibitions.
Periodical bulletins are also issued.
Japanese traditional pictures initially reproduced nature's beauty. The first character "u" in the museum's name means universe, in Japanese Kanji character.
A founding idea is that nature exists in the universe and that art describes all things in nature.
Genealogy and development of contemporary art
What is the modern meaning of the contemporary art?
Modern art appeared in the free atmosphere of Paris in the early 20th Century. The terms "avant-garde" and later cubism and abstract painting came into existence. Abstract painters produced pictures that expressed the human consciousness while tending to be free from the object's concrete form.
Contemporary art further developed into abstract expressionism. De Kooning of New York City, who was one of the major abstract expressionist, depicted the oppression of humanity. Later in Europe, Joseph Beuys advocated social reform through social art. As art became internationalized, original art had to be pursued more activity in Japan also.
*1 Kazuo SAKATA (1889 to 1956) exhibited cubist and purist works while acting as Leger's assistant. He participated in "Art'd Aujour'd Hui" (The Art Exhibition of Today) the world's first international avant-garde art exhibition*4 in Paris in 1925, and was internationally recognized as the first avant-garde artist of Japan. After returning to Japan he established AGO, which aimed the internationalize art.
*2 Teruko HIRAMATSU participated in AGO and was requested to take over the avant-garde art activities from Mr. Sakata before the elder's passing.
In 1966 she held a private exhibition in New York City which was highly praised by the New York Times, as well as exhibitions in various other places. She lived in Germany for more than ten years from 1972, holding about 30 private exhibitions in art museums and galleries. In the United States, she created works in a studio where De Kooning had previously worked also meeting him by chance. By chance she also met Beuys in Germany when she lived in his hometown.
She exhibited "Miyabi" (elegant) works in the United States and whitish "Wabi" and "Sabi" works in Germany. She introduced Japanese traditional culture to Germany with the support of the Japanese Consul General. After returning to Japan, she exhibited the Shinto-influenced "Black" series and the "Gold and Silver" series which depicted a light-filled world using gold and silver media. She created a new abstract art based on Japanese traditional painting using "Sumi" and acrylic media.
*3 Wataru FUKI (1921 to 1987) participated in AGO after serving in the Imperial Navy. He went on to exhibit works in the United States, Germany and other countries. His masterpieces include series describing, the cruelty of war, geometric forms, his old age, a requiem series for his fellow soldiers, and a spiritual and religious series "Heavenly Mandala".
(*4 Picasso, Leger, Miro and other representative modern artists exhibited in this exhibition.)
The past exhibitions are displayed on a panorama of images on our Internet Museum website. This web site can be browsed.
H･Hartung､ R･Motherwell､J･Beuys､ Man･Ray､ A･Tapies､H･Jansen､ H･Chillida､K･SakataL･Faininger､ G･Graubner､J･Itten､ E･Munch､D･Oppenheim､W･Fuki、T･Hiramatsu and other's