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Back to listJun 18, 2008

Japanese Art Treasures Exhibited in Brazil on the Centennial of Japanese Immigration

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Palanquin of the Date Family in Maki-e Lacquer with Arabesque Design (18th century)

One hundred years ago, Japanese began leaving their country to create new lives in Brazil.

Commemorating the centennial of Japanese immigration to Brazil, various events have been taking place in both countries.

On June 18, 2008, "Eternal Treasures of Japan--Art of the Samurai" from the collection of Tokyo Fuji Art Museum (TFAM), Japan, opened at the National Museum of the Republic in Brasília, capital of Brazil. The exhibition was organized at the request of Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, as well as the Government of Brazil and the Japanese Embassy in Brazil, as one of the official events marking the centennial of Japanese immigration to Brazil.

The exhibition introduced 120 masterpieces from TFAM's private collection of paintings, handicrafts, armor and swords that represent key elements of Japanese art and the spirit of the samurai warrior. Displays included a folding screen depicting the Battle of the Genji and the Heike Clans (17th century); a fanciful helmet with the Tokugawa crest decorated with butterflies and dragonflies (18th century); and a suit of armor in the Oyoroi style owned by Shimazu Nariakira (19th century).

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BSGI holds a culture festival in Brasíia

Some 300 guests attended the opening, including Governor José Roberto Arruda of the Federal District of Brasília; Secretary of Culture of the Federal District of Brasília Silvestre Gorgulho; National Museum of the Republic Director Wagner Barja; TFAM Chief Advisor Hiromasa Ikeda; and SGI-Brazil (BSGI) representatives. President Lula sent a congratulatory message, in which he stated that the Japanese artworks, full of beauty, subtlety and harmony, would attract many Brazilian artists and he hoped the exhibition would further the development of friendship between Brazil and Japan.

On June 17, Centro Universitário de Goiás, known as Uni-Anhangüera, conferred the title of doctor, honoris causa, upon SGI President Daisaku Ikeda for his dedication to the cause of peace and the promotion of human rights. The conferral in proxy took place at the BSGI Culture Center in Brasília. To celebrate the occasion, some 2,000 local BSGI members put on a cultural festival at the center.

[Adapted from articles in the June 22 and 24, 2008 issues of the Seikyo Shimbun, Japan]