Inku

Tea Culture of Japan: Chanoyu Past and Present
Yale University Art Gallery

     On Saturday, Jan. 24th, members of the Japan Society of Fairfield County traveled to New Haven to visit the Yale University Art Gallery to view its exhibition, "Tea Culture of Japan, Chanoyu Past and Present." One of the oldest college art museums in the world, the Gallery is a fine-arts museum presenting works of art from ancient times to the present day- and open year-round, free of charge. The Gallery's main building, designed by American architect Louis Kahn, is considered a masterpiece, and has recently undergone a comprehensive renovation.
     The exhibit, which runs from January 20 to April 26, 2009, illuminates the importance of Japanese tea culture and examines the ways in which it has evolved over the centuries. It includes about 100 objects, drawn largely from distinguished private collections and supplemented by the works in the collection of the Yale University Art Gallery. Objects on view range from the Ninth Century to the present day. Tea ceremony devotees among the Japan Society group were particularly thrilled to see, among the beautifully presented objects on display, implements made and used by the great 16th Century Japanese tea master Sen no Rikyu. Videos were shown describing and demonstrating four distinct traditions in Japanese tea ceremony that have evolved over the centuries.
      Later, the group gathered in a private home on Long Island Sound, to meet with Takaya Kurimoto, a Japanese garden designer, of Penguin Environmental Design, Hamden, CT, who was responsible for the stone arrangements of the exhibit. Takaya-san discussed the exhibition, and showed slides of tea ceremony gardens. As the sun set and twilight descended on the Sound, hot green tea, okashi sweets and various other Japanese delicacies were served to the group.
Yale Art Gallery
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