It was on Kyushu, at the beginning of the 17th century, that people from the Netherlands and Japan met each other for the first time. Kyushu is the second largest island of the Japanese archipelago. Since then they shared economic and political interests, not always in perfect harmony, but without doubt, they cultivated a sincere creative curiosity for each other which lasts until today. The culture cooperation program 'Holland-Kyushu' that we celebrated in 2016 and 2017, was a successful witness thereof.




The cultural cooperation program Holland-Kyushu had its official finale with the opening of the Omotemonbashi, the reconstructed bridge connection between Deshima and the city of Nagasaki, on November 24, 2017.

The creative exchanges between Kyushu and the Netherlands will continue, building on the strong ties that have been established by the Holland-Kyushu program. Examples of further initiatives are the Holland House that opened on March 16, 2018 in the city of Saga, and the Arita Creative Residency program, that will continue until at least 2020 thanks to the support of the Mondriaan Fonds and the Stimuleringsfonds Creatieve Industrie. Also, the activities of Ukiha City with people from the Dutch creative sector mean stronger cooperation.

The Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Tokyo and DutchCulture express their thanks to all the people in Kyushu and in the Netherlands who contributed to the success of the Holland-Kyushu program.


The programme Holland-Kyushu consists of various forms of cultural cooperation. We highlight news on collaborations and events below:
  • the Hirado Conservation and Development Workshop

    The workshop is co-organised by the Dutch Cultural Heritage Agency (RCE) and the Japan-Netherlands Architecture and Cultural Association (JNACA). As part of the 2016/2017 Holland-Kyushu Year, the first workshop was held in Arita in 2016 and this year it will be held in Hirado. Twelve students from Kyushu and Tokyo will take part in the 5-day workshop. The Hirado Conservation and Development Workshop aims to define the development potentials of Hirado’s historical core. The outcome of the workshop will be policy advice to the municipality of Hirado regarding planning and design of the inner city and its buildings. The method used is a quick scan on two topics: Part 1: […]

  • Dutch Jazz in Hirado

    This is the second concert in the “Dutch Jazz in Hirado” series. This time The Amsterdam Jazz Connection featuring Mike Del Ferro. They will perform opera songs specially arranged by Mike Del Ferro. The concert takes place in the reconstructed Hirado Dutch Trading Post where the Dutch merchants started trading with Japan in the 17th century. It was the first place in Japan where Dutch music was played. This special evening is made possible by the Netherlands Embassy in Japan and the Hirado City Hall.  

  • Dutch Trading Post Heritage Network Meeting

    The Dutch Trading Post Heritage Network was initiated in 2014 by Hirado City and the Hirado Dutch Trading Post. The first official meeting took place in Jakarta (Indonesia) in 2015, and in Ayuthaya (Thailand) in 2016. To commemorate the opening of the newly constructed main bridge to Dejima, the 2017 meeting will be held in Nagasaki. Members from 7 different countries will participate to exchange knowledge with each other on the management of the historical VOC heritage in each of their respective cities.

    The programme Holland Kyushu consists of various forms of cultural cooperation. We highlight a number of them below:
    More Projects
    …and there are many more projects to mention:
    The programnme Holland-Kyushu in the press and other mentions:
    • Volkskrant Magazine

      Volkskrant Magazine featured an article by journalist Jeroen Visser on the reconstruction of Dejima and the current state and function of the former Dutch trade post in their special on Japan of 2 December 2017.

    • VPRO Gids

      Deshima Revived, the radio project about the restauration of de historical Dutch trading post Deshima, made the cover of the Dutch TV/radio guide magazine VPRO Gids! Along with a special article spread over 5 pages. (December 7, 2016)

    • Stimuleringsfonds Creative Industrie

      The newsletter #57 from the Creative Industries Fund NL with the theme ‘internationalisation’ features Arita 2016/ en the programme Holland-Kyushu. (September 29, 2016)

      Although the official cooperation program Holland-Kyushu has come to an end, we are happy to provide further information on cultural cooperation between Japan and the Netherlands.

      Ian Yang
      DutchCulture, centre for international cooperation
      +31 (0)20 6164 225
      Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands
      Public Diplomacy, Political & Cultural Affairs
      Many organisations contribute to the Holland Kyushu programme, among others:

      Nagasaki Rinne logoSaga Prefecture LogoStimuleringsfonds sci_nl_rctgemeente amsterdam_logosieboldhuis_logo_nieuw400 jaar arita porselein Arita Town copy  Hirado City logo Nagasaki City logo Nagasaki Logo