Yubara Onsen, Naoshima, and Tokyo

After the Mokuhanga Conference and visiting Mokuhanga studios in Kyoto, my friends and I did some sight seeing in Japan.  First, we went to Yubara Onsen in Okayama and stayed there for two nights.

Train ride to Yubara Onsen

We stayed at Yubara-no-yado Komeya, which is a traditional Japanese-style inn.  It had a small but beautiful indoor and outdoor onsen within the inn.  Breakfast there was pretty good too!

Breakfast at the inn

In the town, they also had a free public outdoor onsen, which was pretty interesting.   Both men and women bathed there together.  I couldn’t take pictures when we were there, but I took this picture of an old photo of the onsen that was in a local restaurant.

Old photo of the public outdoor onsen

Then we went to beautiful Naoshima.

Naoshima

There are many contemporary art museums there.  We only stayed for one night, and we arrived there in the early afternoon, so we were not able to see everything.  But we were able to go to Chichu Art Museum, Benesse House Museum, and see a few outdoor sculptures.  It rained the whole time we were there, but it was really worth making the trip.  Tadao Ando’s architecture and all the artworks really complemented each other very well.

Soaking up James Turrell’s “Open Sky” on a rainy day

There were a couple of Yayoi Kusama’s works on the island.

Yayoi Kusama from a distance

Yayoi Kusama in the rain

In Naoshima, we stayed in a Yurt!

Finally, we took the Shinkansen to Tokyo.  One of the things that we did in Tokyo was to meet up with Keiko-san, who is the Program Director of the Nagasawa Art Park Artist-in-Residence.  Together, we went to 3331 Arts Chiyoda, which used to be a school building, and now is a space for galleries, artist studios, and workshop spaces.  Nagasawa Art Park office and gallery is also in this building.  We saw some great exhibitions in the galleries there.

3331 Arts Chiyoda Building

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