This exhibition is made up of two parts: a special display titled Shapes of Light / Scenes of Light, and “Collection Highlights,” a selection of outstanding works from the collection.
The former examines artistic expressions related to light from three perspectives. The first part, Shapes of Light, deals with various types of light including the sun, moon, rainbows, and electric lights. Here, we examine the way in which light –sometimes clustered, other times emitted – is expressed in contemporary art. In the second part, Scenes of Light, we look at scenes or scenery containing an expanse of lights. Though brilliant or limitless light can have a healing effect on us, it also conveys the presence of a dark shadow. This is borne out by the kanji character 景, which can be read “kage” (shadow), suggesting both the meaning of light and shadow. In Hiroshima, we are especially reminded of the indelible shadows that were burnt into the city by the heat rays emitted by the atomic bomb. This brings us to the last focus: “shadow=light.” Here, we present works (including some that were commissioned by the museum) from the collection that are related to the theme of “Hiroshima,” in an effort to evoke thoughts of hope and regeneration rather than despair.