Living Kogei: Japanese Artisan Crafts from the LSE Collection

Why We Recommend it

Drawn from the diverse collections of the Ise Foundation, Living Kogei highlights over seventy works by prominent and emerging contemporary Japanese artists who revisit the combination of art and traditional craftsmanship.


The modern Japanese term for artisan crafts, kogei (pronounced ‘ko-gay’) refers to a form of highly skilled artistic expression associated with specific regions and craftsmen in Japan. Kogei works typically include ceramics, textiles, lacquer, metal, glass and wood, and have at their core a concern for fine craftsmanship and the inherent qualities of the materials. Informed by centuries of tradition, these crafts have been revitalised and expanded in recent years, with emerging avant-garde tendencies in fields such as bamboo sculpture and studio glass competing with established practices and values that are deeply embedded in Japanese culture.

Ranging from rustic ceramics with asymmetrical forms, to abstract glass with elegant silhouettes and sensuous colours, each work displayed in this exhibition demonstrates how contemporary artisans revere and carry on the long tradition of Japanese craft, while at the same time departing from convention in search of the new.

The exhibition is companioned by a VIP tour on 9 October 2019 and the Symposium: Living Kogei: Contemporary Japanese Craft from the Ise Collection on 10 October 2019.


When: 7 Aug 2019 - 27 Oct 2019 Where: University Museum and Art Gallery, The University of Hong Kong – 90 Bonham Road – Pokfulam