The Yokohama Museum of Art was founded in 1989 to foster the development of a rich civic culture in Yokohama by encouraging citizens to appreciate modern and contemporary art and engage in creative activities.
Situated in the fashionable Minatomirai port area of the city, the museum is one of the largest art institutions in Japan, and it has become a popular destination for anyone with an interest in painting and photography. Indeed, it is a vibrant part of the local community, and a visit here gives you a taste of the city and its place in the world.
The museum is known for its iconic architecture, featuring the impressive expanse of the Grand Gallery (see the photo below). The facilities include a total of seven gallery spaces, as well as an Art Information and Media Center that holds over 90,000 art-related books, ateliers hosting a wide range of workshops for children and adults, and many other facilities. The Citizens' Workshop provides many art-making courses throughout the year, where citizens can meet artists and others to share creative experiences.
Befitting its location in the international seaport city of Yokohama, the museum focuses on collecting and showing modern and contemporary art created since the late 19th century, when the port of Yokohama opened. The large collection of art from that time through to the present day includes works from Dali, Magritte, Cézanne, and Picasso, as well as pieces by artists who have been associated with Yokohama since the end of the Edo period (which finished in the late 1860s) and through the Meiji era (1868-1912).
As Yokohama is one of the birthplaces of photography in Japan, the facility is also proud to have a significant collection of photos. These works are shown in the exhibition, ‘Yokohama Museum of Art Collection’. Various special exhibitions also adorn the halls and walls of the museum.
It is easy to enjoy a visit to this place, surrounded as you are by the history and the spirit of Yokohama.