Junko Sato Photography Exhibition “A Moment of Life”

The Nippon Club is pleased to hold an exhibition of photographs by Junko Sato who has depicted a traditional rural Japanese puppet theater for 30 years.  Her exhibition entitled “A Moment of Life”, is about the puppets of the theater at the Inugai Farmers village in Katsuura, Tokushima Prefecture on Shikoku Island.

Bunraku, one of Japan’s traditional performing arts, has existed since the early-Edo period. It is also known as the puppet theater, which is in part, for showing emotions beyond time and space.

The farmer puppeteers pass down their skills from generation to generation. These master artists seem to bring life and breath, as well as soul, to the characters. After each performance, the puppets are placed back in their boxes where they rest until they come to life again at the next show. In these photos, Ms. Sato captures the puppets, moment by moment, during their time on stage.

This puppet theater has existed for nearly 200 years in this small farm village on Shikoku. Ms. Sato said: “I hope to introduce a traditional Japanese performing art that has been unchanged and deeply tied to a local rural area. I also hope to exhibit a very brief moment of the puppets’ lives through my photos and that it appeals to people in New York. These 41 photos by Ms. Sato were developed by herself in a darkroom.

Please enjoy the charm of this Japanese puppet theater.

Junko Sato
Born in 1937. She studied photography under the late Koro Honjo. In 1984, she encountered the puppet theater on the farmers’ village stage. It was then that Ms. Sato started to take photographs for nearly three decades. In 2003, she held a four month solo exhibition at Zurich University Museum of Ethnology in Switzerland.

In 2011, Ms. Sato’s work rotated in a photo exhibition of contemporary Japan in conjunction with the Moegi group, members of which she instructs. It was organized by Gallery Sato in Switzerland.

Her other major works include:Views of a polluted copper refinery site; A pictorial record of recycled wreckage and scrap from the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake of 1995 that was used in works by artists around the world; A record of a deserted primary school built in 1918 in Kobe; A photographic record of the indigenous Ainu people of Japan.

Two works in Kobe are in the permanent collection of the Kobe City Government and have been shown in more than 20 exhibitions, including in Osaka, Tokushima, Tokyo, Kanazawa, and Kobe.

In 2013, Ms. Sato helped start an appreciation group for the Japanese classic tradition. It offered a Noh chant of Semimaru and a Noh flute to Semimaru Shrine in Shiga Prefecture. It also organized a remembrance of Semimaru, who lived about 1300 years ago.

Period 9/14 (Thu)-9/20 (Wed)
Hours Mon-Fri: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Sat: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sun: Closed
Location The Nippon Gallery at The Nippon Club
145 West 57th St., 7th Floor, New York, NY 10019
Admission Admission: Free


Marine Day Art Show in New York

Period 10/5 (Thu)-10/12 (Thu)


Marine Day Art Show in New York
Supported by Japan Foundation

The Nippon Gallery at The Nippon Club is pleased to host a Marine Day Art Show in New York from October 5th to 12th, 2017.

The third Monday in July is a national holiday in Japan called, “Marine Day”. It is “a day for appreciating the benefits of the sea and wishing for the prosperity of Japan which is a maritime country.”

On “Marine Day” in 2015, under the slogan “We will live here in Fukushima!” four artists, Mr. Michio Namatame, Mr. Hiroshi Arai, Mr. Akira Asano and Mr. Seijyu Yoshida established a “Marine Day Art Show”.  Each of the four artists acts actively on the slogan “Let’s enrich Fukushima with art and culture!”  This year, three years since the inauguration, the Marine Day Art Show will cross the Pacific Ocean and will hold an exhibition here in New York.

Mr. Namatame, executive committee representative, says the aspirations of the exhibition in New York are, “It’s been six years since the Great East Japan Earthquake, and we are on the road to recovery from the tsunami and radioactive disaster”. We would like to continue this Art Show as a requiem to the deceased people and with gratitude to the sea which nurtures “life”. Under the slogan, “We will live in Fukushima”, we, the artists living and working in Fukushima, would like to show our works of art to the world and exchange art and culture between Japan and other countries. We believe that the show in New York will be astrong point of a expansion of our arts into the world “.

At the exhibition, in addition to Mr. Namatame, Mr. Hiroshi Arai, Professor of Fukushima University, Mr. Akira Asano, Professor of Koriyama Women’s College, Mr. Seijyu Yoshida and 39 other artists will show their masterpieces, including 4 sculptures and 39 paintings.

“The exhibition in New York is an opportunity for restoration of the mind since the Great East Japan Earthquake and development of new culture and art in Fukushima, and furthermore, an introduction of Japanese contemporary art to the world.” The executive committee is enthusiastic about the exhibition.

We hope you will visit the gallery during the show.

■ Main Day Art show Activity Achievements
Subsidy from Iwaki City Culture Promotion Fund  2015.
Subsidy from Fukushima Prefecture Support Project in 2016.

Holding exhibition as Iwaki Municipal Government 50th anniversary project
A collaborative project with Shanghai Art Show.


  • S
  • M
  • T
  • W
  • T
  • F
  • S
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
  • 13
  • 14
  • 15
  • 16
  • 17
  • 18
  • 19
  • 20
  • 21
  • 22
  • 23
  • 24
  • 25
  • 26
  • 27
  • 28
  • 29
  • 30
Advertise with Us.