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See Masterpieces of the Western World at the Ohara Museum of Art


Visit the oldest private museum in Japan in Kurashiki’s scenic canal district


Art lovers are sure to appreciate the Ohara Museum of Art, a storied gallery that opened in Kurashiki Bikan Historical Quarter in 1930. Founded by local entrepreneur Magosaburo Ohara to commemorate his friend, the Western-style painter Kojima Torajiro, it was the first museum in Japan to shine a spotlight on Western artists.


Stroll through the three buildings of the museum and admire the Japanese garden and open-air sculpture exhibit that separates them. The main gallery—housed in the oldest section of the museum, a stunning architectural specimen in itself—showcases the works of Picasso, Kandinsky, Klee, Rodin, Pollock, and more. You'll soon notice that the artists on display cross genres and generations, the connecting factor being that none are Japanese. By contrast, the annex features the paintings and sculptures of domestic artists. Make your way to the third building and you'll find the Craft Gallery and the Asian Art Gallery in a setting renovated from a traditional granary, set next to a tranquil pond where water lilies bloom in the spring and summer.



At the end of the visit, stop by the museum shop to pick up a postcard or replication of your favorite masterpiece. The halls of the museum are wheelchair-accessible, and English audio guides are available to enhance your experience. Before or after the museum visit, take a stroll around the area and enjoy Kurashiki's beautiful canal district.


Access: Take the Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen from Shin-Osaka Station to Okayama Station (about 50 minutes), then transfer to the local line for Kurashiki Station (about 20 minutes). The museum is a 15-minute walk or short taxi ride from the station.


Ohara Museum of Art


1-1-15 Chuo, Kurashiki-shi, Okayama-ken


Approx. 2 hours or more




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