A whole island floating in the Seto Inland Sea as an island of art will blow your imagination

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  • The island Naoshima, floating in the Seto Inland Sea, is not only dotted with museums in possession of world-famous works, artworks are casually installed here and there – making the whole island an art museum. It’s a small island with merely 3,000 inhabitants, but visitors come from all over the world to see this unique island of art.

    Underground art museum

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    The underground Art Museum is, as its Japanese name suggests, buried mostly underground.
    The building designed by representative Japanese architect Tadao Ando houses exhibitions with works from Claude Monet, James Turrell, and Walter De Maria, which are only illuminated by natural light pouring down from the windows.

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    The museum is characterised by an exceptionally interesting concept: enjoy the artwork as it changes its expression from moment to moment, depending on the season, weather and time of the day.
    In this museum not only the individual pieces of art, but the light, shadow and time, the space from moment to moment as a whole are part of the artwork.

    bennesse house museum

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    A unique building formed by an art museum and hotel.
    Like the Chichu Art Museum, the building features large windows that take in natural light, allowing you to always feel the outside nature even if you are inside.
    The objects of modern art are not only inside the building, but scattered about here and there even outside.
    To spend a night in an art museum – what an irresistible hotel for art lovers!

    House project

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    Artworks from whole vacant houses, dotting an area where people still live.
    Seven such artworks are scattered about, from private residences where people once lived, to buildings used by dentists, and even Shinto shrines.
    They were created by taking inspiration from how they looked when people lived there, and the memories of people connected to these buildings and places.

    Sprinkle arts

    Naoshima, where art is dispersed here and there across the island.
    On such an island, you can encounter artworks just by casually strolling around outside.

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    The large yellow pumpkin with its memorable black polka dots, standing alone on the seashore, is the island’s symbol – a work by Yayoi Kusama.

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    A man, sitting on a lovely bench with a great view, reading a newspaper

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    Naoshima, where time flows gently, indifferent to the hustle and bustle of the city.
    In a space born by nature and the power of human imagination, the stress from everyday life leaves your body just by looking over the deep blue, wind-swept ocean.

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    On an island where scenery and space become part of art, you are grasped by a mysterious feeling that everything catching your eye is an artwork.
    As one onlooker put it: don’t you notice how stones simply lying there, trees, flowers, even the sky, all our personal belongings existing casually in our everyday life are transformed into a world of art?

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