The National Museum of Ethnology (Minpaku) is a research center for ethnology and cultural anthropology.

More Happy Every Day: The World of Bricolage Art

Exhibition Introduction
Anthropologist Lévi-Strauss gave the word ‘bricolage’ to the distinctive way of thinking in primitive societies. Whereas a modern approach coordinates materials and tools according to an object, ‘bricolage’ tries to attain something by using pick-up materials. In other words, it is like a daily dish made from something on hand in the refrigerator, not that you buy all the ingredients to make curried rice. All the industrial goods abundant around us are designed to carry out a function or usage. A can for beer exists to be filled with beer. When the can becomes empty, it will be thrown out. On the other hand, performers of bricolage create hats, bags, and children's toys from those cans. Amazed by the unexpected outcome, we see the possibilities of a beer can and the artistic power of the creator in it.
What we try to describe by an unfamiliar word, ‘bricolage art’, are expressive activities in our daily life and artistic works produced through these activities. An ordinary material around us blossoms its buried values with the magic of the artists. Those artistic works must sway our daily life.
An objective of this special exhibition is to inspire people of today, with ‘bricolage’ as a clue, to re-humanize oneself by conquering an identity crisis or a sense of loss, which are salient in our modern life. There is a social image in the background. That is, not a society where people have to constrain themselves due to social ideals or experience restructuring, but a society that presupposes assembling of individual qualities. In other words, that is the dream of a ‘bricolage’ society.


Exhibition Structure
The whole first floor is an image of a house: the artists introduce adjoining art based on the living spaces, such as a front door (Fuzitama), a dining kitchen (Hajime Imamura), a sitting room (Nobuaki Date), a bed room (Tadasu Takamine), living room (Namaiki), and a children's room (Manavu Muragishi). The artifacts of Minpaku play the family of this home. The second floor symbolizes a bazaar where various people with unique positions and values assemble for information sharing. For example, there are ‘Big Lily-yarn’, a stand for information, and a 3D capture system.
* What constitute the exhibition hall are widely available materials, such as tube and coupler scaffolding and corrugated fiberboard. It presupposes that these materials will be returned for distribution after the exhibition.

(((Admission Charges))) Adults: ¥420 (Individual) / ¥350 (Group: more than 20 people)
Students (Senior High School and College): ¥250 (Individual) / ¥200 (Group: more than 20 people)
Children (Elementary and Junior High Schools): ¥110 (Individual) / ¥90 (Group: more than 20 people)

* No additional payment is necessary for entry to the permanent exhibition.
* Admission is free on every Saturday for primary school children, junior high school children and senior high school students.
* Admission is free on May 5, a holiday, for all the visitors.
(((Hours))) 10:00 - 17:00 Entry permitted up to 16:30
(((Closing days))) Every Wednesday (The Museum is open on May 4, a holiday)