I just returned from Japan, where it has been unusually hot this summer. To escape the heat, my family and I stayed in Hakone for a few days. (It is higher in altitude than Tokyo but we found that it was equally hot in Hakone, too.) The area is known for its beautiful countryside and historic hot spring, but during this visit we also fell in love with the Hakone Open-Air Museum.
Most of the work is installed outdoors, where the sun and foliage play against the art. Many of the pieces were interactive, like the garden maze above.
Even though the art never seemed overcrowded, there were things to see at every turn. It felt like an outdoor version of Charles and Ray Eames' living room: things weren't on display, they were placed as a backdrop for living.
We could also make our own sculpture, using colorful foam pieces imagined by architect Mikiko Endo. (I love the fact that architects in Japan work on such a wide range of artistic projects.)
Almost everything in the museum was enjoyable for children. They seemed to understand what the art wanted them to do - to touch, to inquire, and to enjoy. The child in me really liked the woven sculpture by Toshiko Horiuchi, housed in a heavy timber pavilion by Tezuka Architects.
I feel refreshed and inspired after seeing art and architecture working together to create an environment that everyone can enjoy. I recommend you visit the museum next time you're in Japan.
Jeremy Dubow: Portraits
Opening night reception on Friday June 25, 2010, 5pm – 8pm
On display through July, by appointment only
Portland, OR 97214
Phone: (503) 477-7075
Jeremy Dubow’s first series of 3-hour head studies are a meditation on the form and essence of the subject with an emphasis on decisive brush strokes. This show will feature 27 telling portraits, with many of the models present during the opening.
Jeremy Dubow was born in 1974 in San Francisco, California. His formal education included studies at the Florence Academy of Art in Florence, Italy. At the heart of his work, he combines both his love for classical art and contemporary realism. He has shown his work at numerous galleries, and has been featured in OPB’s Oregon Art Beat. In addition to his own body of work, he is commissioned to paint private portraits for individuals.