Art Attack in Osaka Part 1

May 20, 2013 Juju Kurihara Arts, Culture, Travel Tags: , 0 Comments

Article : Chisai Fujita


Japanese department store is built in front of the station. There are popular brand shops, famous bread and cake shops where many Japanese go.But their sales have dropped off.

They try to differ from others to win the competitions by using art. In Osaka / Umeda city especially, you can see a high tendency of this new movement. I like to introduce this phenomenon.



Hankyu Umeda Main Store (阪急梅田本店)  



Hankyu Umeda Main Store is proud of higher sales in Japan.

It renewed last autumn and now they have a big size gallery and the artworks shop.






The opening exhibition is the contemporary artist, Nawa Kohei (名和晃平) who is a popular artist in Japan and Asia. 

Here, we can see and buy western and Japanese manga as well as contemporary art.




Daimaru Umeda (大丸梅田)



Daimaru Umeda is less flashy around Umeda area, They have no English website.

Back in the bubble economy in Japan, they made many art museums in department stores.




Daimaru Museum was one of them and they tend to show modern arts rather than contemporary arts for housewives who come to shop there.


Getting off the escalator, on the same floor as Daimaru Museum, there is a shop that sells artworks. 




In Japan, the concept of department stores has changed in the last few years. It used to differ from supermarkets that are usually located in residential areas and have goods for reasonable prices for everyone. Since there were not so many real rich people in Japan, department stores have started selling fast fashion products. Nowadays, many stations have this new shopping malls inside or in front of it, which include supermarkets and people have no reason to go to a department store.

If people want to see artworks, they can go to museums or galleries. This art movement in department stores seems to me just trying to get attention of clients by collecting arts as if they are clothes or food. Maybe this is because of the mentality of Japanese. For them the art is to see them but not to buy them. Why? As you may know, Japanese houses are very small and buying an artwork is simply luxury.

In the next article, I like to talk about buying art for Japanese people and the art movement in department stores.


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