The Sumida Hokusai Museum : Next Exhibition Information


To commemorate the 170th anniversary of Hokusai’s death

We will hold a special exhibition to

Visual Magic : Exhibition of Masterpieces from Hokusai Museum, Obuse,

Commemorating the 170th Anniversary of Hokusai’s Death

                on view from 19 November 2019 - 19 January 2020.

Visual Magic Flyer

The exhibition presents a selection of master pieces from the Hokusai Museum, Obuse !

To commemorate the 170th anniversary of Katsushika Hokusai’s death, our museum and the Hokusai Museum, Obuse have joined together to organize a pair of exchange exhibitions. The Hokusai Museum, Obuse is located in Obuse in Nagano Prefecture, a place that Hokusai visited during his later years.This exhibition theme of the Sumida Hokusai Museum is “Visual Magic”. It probes the astonishing appeal we find in Hokusai’s works when we realize that he does not depict his subjects simply as they are, but manages to add unnatural structural elements, without making the resulting work appear unnatural.

Exhibition Highlights !

This exhibition is thus a rare opportunity to see nearly 130 works from the Hokusai Museum, Obuse collection on display elsewhere than in that museum. The works on display include brush-drawn paintings from Hokusai’s early to his late periods as well as his iconic Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji and other polychrome woodblock prints. We hope that you will take this opportunity to enjoy them at the Sumida Hokusai Museum in Tokyo.

Highlight 1.  Ceiling Paintings


Hokusai’s ceiling paintings for festival floats, large-scale examples of his brush-drawn paintings, are owned by the Higashimachi and Kanmachi neighborhood councils and are on deposit for permanent display at the Hokusai Museum, Obuse. These major works from Hokusai’s last years—he is thought to have painted them when he was about eighty-five—decorated the ceilings of floats that processed through the town during festivals. In this exhibition, we display one painting each from the Higashimachi and Kanmachi festival floats, each of which have two ceiling paintings.


Phoenix, ceiling painting for a festival float (Higashimachi) (All term)

Masculine Wave

Masculine Wave, ceiling painting for a festival float (Kanmachi) (All term)

Highlight 2. Brush-drawn Paintings

◆ Brush-Drawn Paintings

The Hokusai Museum, Obuse, has a substantial collection of Hokusai’s brush-drawn paintings, sufficient to earn it the designation “Gakyōjin (Man Mad About Painting) Hokusai’s Brush-drawn Painting Museum.” It has galleries in which those paintings are on permanent display. The collection includes paintings from Hokusai’s Sōri period until his last years, providing a comprehensive view of his artworks.

Dragon Above Mount Fuji (1term)

Dragon Above Mount Fuji (1term)

◆ Daily Exorcisms

Among the many notable works are his Daily Exorcisms, paintings of shishi (Chinese lion-dogs) that he produced every day as magic spells to cast out his demonic prodigal grandson. They offer particularly valuable insights into Hokusai’s life, since we know the context behind his creating them.

Daily Exorcisms

Daily Exorcisms  13th day of 11th month (2 term)


Exhibition Overview

◆Exhibition title: Visual Magic: Exhibition of Masterpieces from Hokusai Museum, Obuse, Commemorating the 170th Anniversary of Hokusai’s Death

◆Term: 19 November 2019 - 19 January 2020

1 Term:[Tue] 19 November – [Sun] 15 December

2 Term:[Tue] 17 December – [Sun] 19 January

Hours: 9:30-17:30 (last admission 17:00)

Closed: Every Monday The following day if it is a national holiday.

Open: Mon 13 Jan Closed: Tue 14 Jan 2020

Year end and New Year holidays (Sun 29 Dec- Wed 1 Jan 2020)

◆Organizer:Sumida City, The Sumida Hokusai Museum

◆Cooperation:Hokusai Museum, Obuse

◆Contact:The Sumida Hokusai Museum

◆Admission Fees: 

Adults \1,200 / H.S & Univ. Students \900  / 65 and over \900

J.H.S Students \400 / Disabled peoples\400 / Elementary school students Free

*Group admission applies to 20 or more paying adults.


*5-minute walk from the Toei Oedo Line Ryogoku Station

*9-minute walk from JR Sobu Line Ryogoku Station East exit

*5-minute by Sumida Loop Bus from the JR Sobu Line Kinshicho Station North exit




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Masculine Wave

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Dragon Above Mount Fuji (1term)

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Daily Exorcisms

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Visual Magic Flyer

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