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Japanese Art Walk and Talk

Posted on Jul 9, 2019 by in The OFI Blog |

On Tuesday, 7/9/19, interns and fellows from across the Smithsonian Institution (SI) and the National Gallery of Art (NGA) had the opportunity to explore the NGA exhibit “The Life of Animals in Japanese Art”  before the museum opened to regular visitors.

Smithsonian Institution and National Gallery of Art Interns and Fellows


Intern observing ‘Shaka Passing Into Nirvana’, Unknown Artist

The morning at the museum began with a talk with the interns about key points in the exhibit, items to look for, and information on the curation process. Additionally, they used the audio tour to guide them.

Nathalie Ryan gives brief talk to visitors about the gallery

Interns and Fellows viewed depictions of animals from Japanese culture spanning 17 Centuries. The animal artifacts on display include non-native animals to mythological creatures in Japanese folklore. Most depictions were meant to express the individual personalities that each animal holds. The exhibition includes around 300 artifacts, seven of which are considered national treasures and are labeled as “Important Cultural Property” from the Japanese government.

Intern Standing Near “Sacred Horse” from the 16th Century

Following the walk through, interns were encouraged to visit other parts of the NGA as well.

If you would like to visit this gallery before it moves to Los Angeles in mid-August, click here for more information!