The exhibition was funded in part by the San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture and the County of San Diego Community Enhancement Program.
The exhibition presented objects of daily use from Japan, made from a variety of materials and featuring the Arlene Cox Collection of indigo-dyed textiles, an acquisition made possible by a generous gift from Jeaninne and Richard Helmstetter. The exhibition also included three recent acquisitions — Neko Maneko (Beckoning Cat), a calligraphy brush kanban (shop sign) and a step tansu (cabinet). Other anonymous mingei works were Ainu coats and an Ainu necklace, a farmer’s straw hat and reed rain cape, a rice-hull husker and spinning wheel, baskets, lacquer, pottery, a sake distiller and casks, a 19th century tie-dyed child’s kimono, a 19th century pothanger crosspiece in the form of a fish (yokogi) and a large red paper umbrella. On view were works by Keisuke Serizawa including his ten Disciples of Buddha and objects from Serizawa’s own collection given by him to the Museum in 1979. Works by Shiko Munakata, Kanjiro Kawai and Shôji Hamada were also in the exhibition.
The exhibition included objects donated to Mingei by Professor Chosuke Serizawa, Director of the Tohoku Fukushi University Serizawa Keisuke Art and Craft Museum, Sendai, Japan and the Museum’s Curator of Asian Art Dr. Lennox Tierney and his wife Catherine.
Sosen (Kaneko) Bishop, Professor of the Omote Senke School of Tea, presented Shinseki no Cha (A Tea Ceremony for the New Millennium) on March 10 in conjunction with the exhibition.