On Kyushu, the second largest island of Japan, the Netherlands and Japan first met in the seventeenth century. Besides economic and political interests, which sometime collided with one another, a mutual creative curiosity arose and still exists today. In 2016 and 2017, we celebrate it with the cultural collaboration programme Holland-Kyushu.
In 1600 the Dutch set their first foot on Japanese soil. It was on the shores of Kyushu, the second largest island of Japan, the Dutch and Japanese people first made contact. Four hundred years later we can safely say that this moment marked the beginning of a successful exchange of inspiration and innovation.
Holland and Japan share a long history. Kyushu plays a key role in the century long interaction between two cultures. The island was the starting point of a cultural and economic expedition that lasts until today.
In 2016 and 2017 we celebrate the historic and special ties through the cultural cooperation programme Holland & Kyushu. The initiators of this programme are DutchCulture, the strategic advice agency for international cultural cooperation, and the Embassy of the Netherlands in Tokyo and the consulate-general in Osaka.
With the programme Holland-Kyushu we aim to strengthen and highlight the cultural, economic and creative ties between the Netherlands and Kyushu. Holland and Kyushu have a lot to offer each other. Because of the long shared history we look forward to seize more opportunities for the future, and we are still curious about each other. That is why we try to discover creative initiatives and innovative ideas getting shape in new or already existing Dutch-Japanese cooperation.
Numerous cultural activities and projects will take place in both the Netherlands and Kyushu. One of those projects is Arita/ 2016, commemorating the four hundred year old Arita porcelain industry. From the 17th century on, Dutch traders have been exporting Arita porcelain around the world. Also Arita porcelain inspired the Dutch to start their own porcelain industry. The concept of Arita/2016 is to bring together international, innovative designers with the traditional, renowned Kyushu porcelain industry. The project resulted in publications, products and exhibitions. It is an inspiring cross-over of the past, present and future with cultural traditions and craftsmanship.
During the programme Holland-Kyushu, various cultural projects will take place in 2016 en 2017. Artists, cultural organisations, entrepreneurs and innovators in Japan and in the Netherlands are joining to create a sustainable relationship between the Netherlands and Kyushu. Follow us on this website and via the DutchCulture newsletters for information about different projects and for the latest developments.
The Nagasaki Museum of History and Culture has shown five much-debated landscape paintings in Western style, that were acquired by Philipp Franz von Siebold (1796-1866), the German physician who lived on Deshima between 1823 and 1829. These paintings are part of the renowned Japanese collections kept in the National Museum of Ethnology in Leiden, The Netherlands. Matthi Forrer, the former curator of these collections, revealed at the 2016 Siebold Collection Conference held in Nagasaki, that Von Siebold himself kept a list of the paintings he acquired and listed the paintings as ‘by Hokusai’. This was big news in Japan and among enthusiast and specialists of Japanese art worldwide. The paintings […]
First initiatives to restore Dejima date back to 1951. 65 years on, at long last, the construction work is completed. We owe this to the many families living in the neighborhood, to generous financial support from citizens and companies of Nagasaki, as well as the collaborative efforts of the local government and citizens. Thanks to the scientific expertise brought to the project, the restoration has been carried out in a historically accurate manner. Now that the Omotemon-bridge is finished, we can – like in the old days when the traders arrived in Dejima from across the seas – once again cross the water to enter the factory. We are grateful […]
To celebrate the opening of the Omotemon bridge in Nagasaki, Dutch artist Aliki van der Kruijs wil display her art on Dejima. This display, called Made by Rain, captures the feeling of stone paved streets that gently shine and glisten in the rain on textile. It evokes a beautiful city scenery that catches people by surprise in both Nagasaki and the Netherlands, and it will always remain as a warm memory. Right now, Aliki is staying in Arita, in the Saga province. She is one of the participants of the Creative Residency in Arita/Saga project. Her plan is to put up a display in Dejima that showcases her textiles that […]
We are pleased to announce the performance Watching and being watched by Hannie van den Bergh and Jan van den Berg on June 24 (Sat) and 25 (Sun), as a result of their artist in residency at Studio Kura. For this special occasion the noh performer Toshikazu Marumachi (from Hiroshima) will perform with them.
What can be the role of arts and design in this era of big changes in both society and science? How can we use traditional techniques to develop state of the art scientific research and bottom up initiatives? Studio HB is a design and research lab, working in the field for many years. Senri Nojima, artist and professor at the Kumamoto University, invited Hannie van den Bergh from Studio HB to talk about her working method and give the students of the University the opportunity to discuss about a broader approach to the role of arts and design.
In 2016, it will be four hundred years ago that an exceptional type of white clay was discovered in the mountains around the city of Arita. That clay became the raw material for the famous Arita porcelain. The porcelain acquired world fame when Dutch merchants began exporting it from their trading post on Dejima during course of the 17th century. The refined pottery, or ‘Imari porcelain’, as it is known in Europe, was of an extremely high quality and very much in demand. Moreover, it inspired the Dutch to develop a tradition of porcelain all their own.
Deshima, or ‘Dejima’ in modern Japanese, was a fan-shaped little island lying in the harbour of Nagasaki. Not much bigger than De Dam, Amsterdam’s central square, Deshima functioned as the Dutch trading post in Japan from 1641 to 1859. The Dutch lived there under strict prohibitions. Only very rarely were they allowed to leave the island, such as for instance travelling to Edo (now Tokyo) once a year for an audience with the shogun.
MONO JAPAN is a fair and a cultural event with inspiring lectures and workshops, in one welcoming businesses and general audience alike. MONO JAPAN offers a stage to acclaimed masters of traditional practices and the new generation of ambitious and enthusiastic creators.
400 years after the first Dutch traders went to the Far East, The Global Tradewind Organisation is preparing a voyage around the globe, from Europe to Asia. Goods such as wine, olive oil, coffee, and cacao which are produced in a fair and sustainable way will be in 2017 carried across the seas by wind power only.
Indigo: Sharing blue is an artistic research on indigo. Indigo Dyeing is the shared heritage of Japan and the Netherlands that reached its peak during the Golden Age. By researching the past between these two countries, Crafts Council Nederland brings the traditions of indigo back to life.
Two designer/artist teams from the Netherlands, paired with three sweets pastry shops in Hirado as well as with makers for the plates and tea bowls under the directions of the curator Chitose Ochi, introduce a new collection which is related to the Hirado’s sweets culture. The result will be presented during a Dutch Tea Ceremony in Hirado and Tokyo, and in Europe.
Opening Traditions is a project of three designers with different backgrounds, who have studied together at the Design Academy Eindhoven. In collaboration with the shop Unagi no Nedoko and a traditional Japanese ikat weaving company in Yame, Fukuoka, they design a new ikat fabric which will be presented at the Dutch Design Week 2016.
In 2016, Dutch and Japanese crafts experts are holding two meetings in Kyushu. The participants exchange knowledge and expertise and seek future collaborative partners in the areas of traditional skills, innovation, mutual social concerns and entrepreneurship.
OTANI NIEUWENHUIZE is a collaboration project of the Japanese photographer Shinji Otani and the Dutch photographer Johan Nieuwenhuize. Two photographers with different cultural backgrounds, who not only recognise differences in their concepts and fascinations but also a similar state of mind in each other’s work, visit the most touristic places in the Nederlands and in Kyushu.
For two centuries, Deshima was the one and only door between Japan and the Western world. What does Deshima mean for the modern Japanese – living in a still relatively isolated country, and for the Dutch – half a globe away? Could Deshima develop into the bearer of new meaning and importance for both Japan and the Netherlands? Perhaps even as a powerful symbol of the importance of growing cooperation in this world, by nations opening their doors?
How did Leiden acquire its famous Japanmuseum SieboldHuis? Why does the city have a special Van Siebold garden within the Hortus botanicus Leiden? And why have hosts of students over the centuries mastered the Japanese language at Leiden University? Curious? Then treat yourself to Het Zingend Hart’s vocal music show “Von Siebold in search of the real East Asia.” Performances in Leiden’s Academy Building (Rapenburg 73) on 11, 12, 18 and 19 November, as part of the Leiden Asia Year. Support act by Raiden Yosakoi – 雷電 よさこいWarning: our shows mostly sell out. So book your seats in time, through email@example.com. ようこそ / Yōkoso – be welcome! More info at www.hetzingendhart.nl
Flyer (pdf): HZH-Siebold-ENG
The Dutch Trading Post Heritage Network, initiated in Hirado, is an international network of institutions in the public and private sector that work with VOC heritage. A number of cities in (South) East Asia cooperate, does research and promotes exchanges on a cultural, economic, educational and personal level. The annual network conference for 2017 is planned to be held in Nagasaki.
Friends of MacDonald • The Dutch Connection —a Cultural Public Benefit Organisation— tries to advance insight in relations between Asia, Europe and North America. Its major activity is to grant the Ranald MacDonald Prize to a young writer or artist whose work sheds new light on those relations. The prize amounts to 5000 Euros and will be announced every October 11.
The Mondriaan Fund and the Creatieve Industries Fund NL offer together residency in the Saga region in Japan. The reason for this residency is to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Japanese Arita porcelain in 2016. There are two residency periods of three months during which an artist and a designer work together with a ‘pottery’ in the Arita region.
Regout in Japan is a cooperation between Nagasaki and Maastricht that aims to start a long-term partnership to confirm the historical relation between Nagasaki, more precisely Dejima, and Maastricht. For that purpose, Centre Céramique in Maastricht will bring a loan of Maastricht ceramics, moulds and copper plates to the Dejima Restoration Office in Nagasaki where the objects will get a special place in the new presentation of Dejima in 2017. Centre Céramique owns the most important ceramic collections of the Netherlands.
The Japanese island Amami has a centries-old tradition of kimono making. This tradition has declined in demand, and there is a great risk that this craft will dissapear in the future. The photobook “Motsure Hotsure Tsumugu” shows the traditional way of producing kimonos on the Amami island and the beauty of the products. The book also shows a series of almost meditative portrets of how the kimonos are worn.
Kaikin is a contemporary play loosely based on a historical incident of a woman arriving in Japan, persuading the authorities to let her stay with her husband. The Japanese characters are affected by this in various ways, and the journey that follows confronts us with our feeling of belonging, pushing boundaries and how we’re inevitably governed by love. ‘Kaikin’ – at times surreal – also includes a modern folktale and the introduction of mythical creatures.
A jazz concert by the famous quintet AMSTERDAM JAZZ CONNECTION will be organised in a 500 year-old historical temple in Ukiha City, Fukuoka. Enjoy an early autumn evening with a combination of exquisite local cuisine and top notch music.
400 years ago, in 1609, the first Dutch Trading Post in Japan was set up in Hirado and it fulfilled an important role in the international relations between Japan and the western world. In September 2016 the exhibition “Holland at Home in Hirado” will be held in the reconstructed Hirado Dutch Trading Post with many items that represent various stories of the many personal connections between the people of Hirado and the Netherlands. It shows that the exchanges between Hirado and the Netherlands are still very much alive today.
In cooperation with DutchCulture, Scholten & Baijings welcomes a closed group of experts and creators to a series of lectures in the Arita House Amsterdam in 2016. These three lectures will be held in the context of the programme Holland-Kyushu and 2016/ project with relevant themes for the Holland-Kyushu relation such as craft, cultural heritage en revitalisation of rural areas (area development and community building).
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)
The newsletter #57 from the Creative Industries Fund NL with the theme ‘internationalisation’ features Arita 2016/ en the programme Holland-Kyushu. (September 29, 2016)
A nice comprehensive article “Made in Japan” featuring Arita 2016/ project in Form magazine nummer 267.