Issue 02 January 2013

Dear Friends and supporters of the Sainsbury Institute,  The year of the snake brought with it much snow and freezing temperatures to Norwich. We hope that you will enjoy the second edition of our e-magazine in the warmth and comfort of your home or office. If you appreciated our first e-edition, you will be delighted to discover more about the Institute and Japanese arts and cultures. The Friend’s scheme that we launched last year has already had a good start. To date we have hosted two exciting events for our friends: a book launch by Research Director, Professor Nicole Rousmaniere, and a New Year’s party at 64 The Close. As […]

Custom and Culture: Japanese National Holidays

January, February, March Despite its reputation as a sober, industrious nation, Japan has a well-established if surprising tradition of celebrations enshrined in law. Each of these non-working days reveals something of Japanese psyche, culture and history, so in this issue we continue our series on National Holidays by looking at observances in January, February and March. New Year’s Day [January 1] ‘Celebrate the beginning of the year’ This national New Year’s celebration was established in 1948 and reflects Japan’s adoption of the Gregorian calendar on 1st January 1873. Before that the year started at the beginning of spring in accordance with the traditional luni-solar calendar, as is still the case […]

The Institute and Our Community

Heritage Open Days comes to 64 The Close On a balmy Saturday morning in early September we opened the doors of the Norwich headquarters of the Sainsbury Institute for Heritage Open Days, a chance for the public to access historic buildings which they cannot usually enter. For my colleagues of the Sainsbury Institute (most of whom were not around when we moved into 64 The Close in the autumn of 2001) and me it was an opportunity to rediscover some of the traces of the history of this lovely old building embedded in its very fabric. Heritage Open Days is an initiative that has been running for a number of […]

Letters from Fellows at the Sainsbury Institute

From Gyewon Kim This last academic year, during which I have been The Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Fellow at The Sainsbury Institute, has been a highly productive and creative experience. I gave several presentations, wrote and edited my research for publication and organized a successful specialist workshop on rumours, secrets and images. My talks on the subject of the Meiji Emperor’s local progresses, their photographic documentation and their legacy in relation to the formation of local landscape and subjectivity were delivered at various locations in the UK. In November 2011 I presented my research at the Japan Research Centre and East Asian Art and Archaeology Seminar at SOAS. Then in […]

The Sainsbury Institute Abroad

An Internship at the Museum of Asian Art in Corfu: Kumquats and Japanese Art Among the things a traveller to Corfu sees in almost every souvenir shop is a small citrus fruit, the Kumquat. It was great surprise to me, a Japanese visiting Greece for the first time, to see that the kinkan, as the Kumquat is known in Japan, is so popular on this faraway island from Japan. In fact the fruit was brought to Corfu from Japan in the 19th Century, an interesting coincidence perhaps for Gregorios Manos, a Corfiot diplomat posted to Vienna who collected Japanese and other East Asian arts in the same era. His collection became the […]

Treasures of the Library

“The history of Japan : giving an account of the ancient and present state and government of that empire, of its temples, palaces, castles and other buildings, of its metals, minerals, trees, plants, animals, birds and fishes, of the chronology and succession of the emperors, ecclesiastical and secular, of the original descent, religions, customs, and manufactures of the natives, and of their trade and commerce with the Dutch and Chinese : together with a description of the Kingdom of Siam”Written in High-Dutch by Engelbertus Kæmpfer ; and translated from his original manuscript, never before printed by J.G. Scheuchzer, with the life of the author, and an introduction; London : 1728 […]

Museums in Japan

Kyushu Ceramic Museum Professor Ōhashi Kōji, Director emeritus of the Kyushu Ceramic Museum, and Sotheby’s Senior Fellow of the Sainsbury Institute for 2012 travelled to England twice in 2012 in order to conduct research on the British Museum’s extensive collection of Japanese ceramics. Professor Ōhashi has worked at the Kyushu Ceramic Museum since its foundation in 1980 and his own research reflects this important museum’s history. He spoke to us about the Kyushu Ceramic Museum when we met in London shortly before Christmas. ‘The Kyushu Ceramic Museum is located in Hizen Province in Kyushu, which became a centre of ceramic production in the early 17th century. As only the second […]

Interview with Founders and Staff

Dame Elizabeth Esteve-Coll:Part 2 The Formation of the Sainsbury Institute: Staffing and 64 The Close In this second instalment of the creation of the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Art and Cultures, Professor Nicole Rousmaniere, the Founding Director and currently Research Director, continues her interview with Dame Elizabeth Esteve-Coll. Dame Elizabeth is the former Vice-Chancellor of the University of East Anglia and Director of the Victoria and Albert Museum, and since its establishment in January 1999, a Trustee of the Institute. During this second interview, Dame Elizabeth reviewed the history of the Institute, particularly in regard to location and staffing and commented on recent developments. Dame Elizabeth’s unswerving […]