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Friday, June 10, 2011

TOKYO

"Symbols of Immortality: The Phoenix And The Lion"

Suntory Museum of Art


By KIWAKO TABATA

News photo
"Lion" by Odano Naotake (18th century) PRIVATECOLLECTION

This exhibition traces the symbolic use and transformation of the phoenix and lion in various aspects of Japanese culture. Both the phoenix and the lion are symbols of Chinese origins that are often associated with immortality. Throughout Japanese history, they have been used in many paintings and crafts as religious motifs.

Works on show, which include paintings, textiles, ceramics and statues, illustrate how these two noble creatures were used to decorate items and inspire prayer and religious reflection. Both ancient works from China, such as statues, and modern pieces, such as ceramics, are on display; till July 24.

Suntory Museum of Art, (03) 3479-8600; Tokyo Midtown Gardenside,9-7-4 Akasaka, Minato-ku; direct connection from Exit 8 of Roppongi Station, Toei Oedo Line and Hibiya Line. Wed.-Sat. 10 a.m.- 8 p.m., Sun., Mon. and holidays 10 a.m.-6p.m. ¥1,300. Closed Tue. suntory.jp/SMA.


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