Yatsugatake Museum of Art
See beautiful art works amidst clear forest air
Yatsugatake Museum of Art is located at the foot of Yatsugatake Mountain, 1,350 meters above sea level. It opened in 1980, when it was one of Japan's few art museums in a village. It's building was designed by a famous Japanese architect, Togo Murano (1891 to 1984). It has a unique design in a continuous dome shape like a space port, and makes one imagine a mountain range. The museum has bronze sculptures and pictures by Takashi Shimizu, a sculptor who led Japan's sculpting art world after World War II. It also exhibits works by Kakusen Tsugane. Both of these artists are from this town (Haramura). It also has exhibits which introduce craftsmen working at the foot of the Yatsugatake Mountains, and planned exhibits for each of the 4 seasons: Quilts, dyeing, weaving, sakiori weaving, etc. The adjoining Haramura Folk Museum exhibits earthenware and stone tools and discovered in local excavations, so you can learn about life in Yatsugatake 4,500 years ago.
Leaving the museum, there is a walking path with outdoor exhibits of sculpture works by Takashi Shimizu, and bronze sculptures made by local junior high school students. While strolling, you can sense a beautiful harmony of art and nature, and enjoy the mountain plants of Yatsugatake, which changes its face with each season.
Address: 17217-1611 Haramura, Suwa-gun, Nagano
Hours open to visitors: 9:00 to 17:00
Admission Fee: Adult 500 yen, Child 250 yen (discounts for 20 or more people)
Closed: New Year's (December 29 to January 3), June 6 to 7, December 1 to 2
Directions: Ride JR Chuo Main Line, and get off at Chino Station (from JR Shinjuku Station, take Tokkyu Asuza limited express train for about 2 hours), then ride Haruma Junkansen bus, and at Hossawa Shako you change to Yatsugatake-sen Serorin bus, then get off at Yatsugatake Museum of Art.
(Car) About 8km from Chuo Expressway, Suwa-minami Interchange