Philippine News

Arts & Culture: Ayala Museum “On-The-Go” is at Greenbelt 5 with a New Exhibition in Collaboration with The Japan Foundation, Manila

The Japan Foundation, Manila, in collaboration with Ayala Museum and Ayala Malls, with the support of Ateneo de Manila University Japanese Studies Program, Arete, and the Embassy of Japan in the Philippines, presents Contemporary Wood-Carved Netsuke, a traveling exhibition to open at Ayala Malls Greenbelt 5 from July 1 to 21, 2019. Viewing is free.

As kimono culture flourished during the Edo period in Japan (1603-1868), netsuke, small
carvings, were created as toggles to secure the small personal items such as money pouches, inrō (medicine containers), or tobacco containers worn suspended on cords from the obi (a sash worn with kimono). What began as functional pieces to prevent those little
containers from falling to the ground evolved into small but highly creative carvings. In Japan, some netsuke enthusiasts and carvers have managed to keep the tradition alive. Today, classic netsuke have gained international acclaim as remarkably detailed carvings, collected as valuable art pieces or worn as fashion statements with traditional Japanese clothing.

“Netsuke is unique in that daily commodities have evolved into an art form in the course of
time. I believe viewers can enjoy and appreciate the delicate work of art created by
Japanese craftsmanship.” shares Hiroaki Uesugi, director of The Japan Foundation, Manila.


Contemporary Wood-Carved Netsuke, our new traveling exhibition, is an innovative
contemporary crafts exhibition presenting 65 works by contemporary Japanese netsuke
carvers and artists.

A series of special events are also lined up to complement the Netsuke exhibition. We have
invited two renowned netsuke artists and experts from Japan, Mr. Tadamine Nakagawa and
Ms. Asuka Kajiura, to give a talk, demonstration, and workshop on netsuke, together with a talk by Dr. Karl Cheng Chua from Ateneo de Manila University.

In celebration of Philippine-Japan Friendship Month this July, the exhibition run also coincides with the 22nd Japanese Film Festival or EIGASAI, screened in film theaters around the Philippines, and The Strangers, a dance collaboration to be held at the Blackbox Theater, De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde.

Contemporary Wood-Carved Netsuke Exhibition
July 1 – 21, 2019
3rd Level, Greenbelt 5 Phase 1, Makati City
Mall hours: Mon-Thurs, 11 am to 9 pm; Fri-Sun 11 am to 10 pm

Special Events

The Art of Netsuke: Talk and Demonstration
With Netsuke Masters Tadamine Nakagawa and Asuka Kajiura, and Karl Cheng Chua of Ateneo de Manila University
July 1, Monday, 4 pm
3rd Level Gallery, Greenbelt 5, Makati City

Netsuke Workshop
With Netsuke Masters Tadamine Nakagawa and Asuka Kajiura, and Artists from Paete, Laguna
July 2, Tuesday, 10 am to 2 pm
Arete, Ateneo de Manila University

Participants in the workshop are already pre-selected, but we invite observers to be a part of the audience. Free Admission.

Please note that details are subject to change. For more information and updates visit or
Please use the hashtag #netsukeinmanila

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