July 2022 Message from the Executive Director

Preparations are well-advanced for a busy summer at the Sainsbury Institute. Chris Hayes and Ollie Moxham are fine-tuning the final arrangements for our 3rd Online Summer Programme in Japanese Cultural Studies, with another enthusiastic global cohort signed up for two weeks of webinars on the theme of Heritage and Tourism in Post-Lockdown Japan. And the call has gone out for volunteers to take part in a new venture for the Institute, an archaeological excavation at the Neolithic Arminghall Henge just south of Norwich. This takes place in September, in the lead-up to the opening of the exhibition Circles of Stone: Stonehenge and Prehistoric Japan at the Stonehenge Visitor Centre, developed […]

Exhibition – Nara to Norwich: Art and belief at the extremities of the Silk Roads, 500-1100

Nara to Norwich – Beyond the Silk Road The Silk Road is recognised internationally as perhaps the most famous ancient trade route that linked the East and West. Most studies of the Silk Roads focus on exchanges between the two continental extremes, China with Rome and then Byzantium. But in Japan the terminus of the Silk Road is Nara, and its Imperial Treasury, the Shōsōin, full of Silk Road and Buddhist treasures. If we look to the West, discoveries of silk and Buddhist images in northern Europe are testimony to the fact that the Silk Road as we know it extends further than its traditionally regarded terminus at the Mediterranean […]

Report on the talk ‘Self-made and World Aware: Clothing Styles of Okakura Kakuzō and M.K. Gandhi’

At the last Thursday Lecture on the 16 June, Dr Maumita Banerjee, current Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Fellow, shared with us comparative stories of Okakura Kakuzō (1862–1913) and Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (1869–1948). Based on her ongoing book project, she discussed the clothing of the two essential figures in modern Asian history as an issue of representing and contending national identities. Dr Banerjee began her talk with drawing the similarities between Okakura and Gandhi. Both of them manipulated excellent English and published influential books in English. They were familiar with cultural diversities, growing up in international port cities Yokohama and Gujarat. Just three years after Yokohama was opened as a treaty […]