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Upcoming Exhibitions

Building a Legacy: Gifts from the Mary Griggs Burke Collection

June 9–September 17 (Member Preview June 8)

In celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens, the museum will present highlights from the recent gift of Japanese art from the renowned Mary Griggs Burke Collection. A longtime friend and patron of the Morikami, Mary Griggs Burke personally selected and loaned masterworks from her extensive collection for the Morikami’s inaugural exhibit in the newly constructed galleries in 1993. In homage to Mary and Jackson Burke and forty years of support, the museum will showcase more than sixty works of art – including paintings, prints, ceramics, lacquer ware and textiles -that reveal the range and quality of this distinguished collection.


Scene from Utsusemi (Tale of Genji), folding screen (byoubu), 18th c.

Out of the Blue: Japanese Indigo Textiles

October 13, 2017 – January 21, 2018 (Member Preview October 12)

The use of indigo dye, or aizome, has a long and cherished history in Japan. The deep blue colors for which Japanese textiles are celebrated come from the leaves of the tade ai, a plant introduced to Japan from China in the sixth century. Inexpensive cotton fabric dyed in Japanese indigo, or ai, produced aesthetically pleasing and remarkably durable garments for daily use. Farmers wore indigo-dyed clothes for field work, believing the natural ammonia in indigo warded off mosquitoes and poisonous snakes. Silhouetted against a green rice field, the bent figures of farm men and women dressed in dark blue indigo cotton jackets and trousers became a well-known visual symbol of the textile culture of the common people of Japan. Drawn primarily from the Morikami Museum Collections, this exhibition features a range of indigo-dyed costume and textiles, including kimono, samurai jackets, festival robes, firemen’s coats, futon covers, and wrapping cloths..

Fisherman’s Festival Jacket (Maiwai), cotton, indigo and colors, free-hand rice paste resist dyed, Taishō period, c. 1920

Nature, Tradition and Innovation: Contemporary Japanese Ceramics from the Gordon Brodfuehrer Collection

February 16, 2018 – April 22, 2018 (Member Preview February 15)

Unexpected Smiles: Seven Types of Humor in Japanese Paintings

May 18, 2018 – August 26, 2018 (Member Preview May 17)

Hard Bodies: Contemporary Japanese Lacquer Sculpture

September 27, 2018 – January 20, 2019 (Member Preview September 20)