Oct 10th
Jan 5th
The event flyer, with examples of these beautiful decorative glass balls

Tonbotama Exhibition 2020

Explore incredible glass art in Kobe

By Kim    - 1 min read
Venue: Kobe Lampwork Glass Museum When: Oct 10th - Jan 5th 2021, 10:00am - 7:00pm

The Tonbotama Exhibition 2020 is a special event taking place at the Kobe Lampwork Glass Museum until January 5th, 2021. The exhibition explores the beauty of these "dragonfly balls", or tonbotama, which are decorative balls made using a lampwork glass technique.

Tonbotama have been used for a variety of reasons over the years. Along with the simple joy of appreciating them for decoration's sake alone, they have also been used as amulets for protection and for trade purposes.

The event showcases tonbotama from several different glass artists, including Sachi Ishikawa, Ryo Ono, Hideya Uemura, and Kristen Frantzen Orr. Adult admission to the exhibition is 400 yen.

Getting there

The Kobe Lampwork Glass Museum is located 8 minutes walk from either Sannomiya Station or Motomachi Station.

For those who plan to drive to the museum, it's located 2 minutes from the Kyobashi IC on the Hanshin Expressway. Do note that there's no dedicated parking lot at the museum, but there are several paid lots in the surrounding streets.

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Kim @kim.b

I'm an expat who has lived abroad for almost a decade, including 7 years in Japan. I've also visited 44 of 47 prefectures and hope to get to the last three someday! I'm particularly fond of exploring off the beaten path destinations, gardens, and tea houses, and have a real interest in Japan's growing vegan scene.

Join the discussion

Elena Lisina a month ago
This museum was on my list before the trip was cancelled! I have one thing made in this technique from my childhood, but it was brought by my grandmother from China.
Kim Author a month ago
I love how all the pieces are so colorful and detailed. I imagine there are lots of places in the world where artists make glass art in this style! :)