OU Museum of Art Now Exhibiting “Jiki to Hanga: Japanese Porcelain and Prints”

The Oglethorpe University Museum of Art is now exhibiting “Jiki to Hanga: Japanese Porcelain and Prints,” featuring 49 color woodcuts and more than 30 porcelain and earthenware objects. Twenty-eight woodcuts are by shin-hanga style master printmaker Hiroshi Yoshida (1876-1950). The exhibition runs through Sunday, August 25, 2013.

The Yoshida prints and several others are on loan, courtesy of Dr. and Mrs. Terry Taylor. The Japanese porcelain and earthenware displayed include 18th century Kakeimon ware and 19th century Imari vessels and other Japanese ephemera. These objects are part of a generous gift from Ms. Carrie Lee Jacobs Henderson, the granddaughter of esteemed former Oglethorpe University President Thornwell Jacobs.

Several objects from OUMA’s permanent collection are also on view, including a 14th century Amitabha Buddha of the Kamakura period and Utagawa Hiroshige prints given in memory of Dr. Ronald Carlisle, beloved OU professor. Haiku, bi-lingual essays and calligraphy by the children of Seigakuin Atlanta International School are exhibited in the center gallery.

Hiroshi Yoshida, Sending Boats, detail

“Jiki to Hanga is inspired by regional collectors who have a keen interest in supporting Oglethorpe University and arts and culture in the Atlanta metro area,” said Elizabeth Peterson, director of OU Museum of Art. “Furthermore, Oglethorpe offers a thriving Japanese program, has a growing international student population, and has a historical connection to Seigakuin Atlanta International School, which once resided on campus. This exhibition is timely, relevant and exciting.”

 

Mark your calendar for the lecture series scheduled in conjunction with the exhibition:

Wednesday, June 12, 7 p.m. “Ikebana – Blending Traditional and Modern Forms,” by Ms. Elaine Jo, Ichiyo Ikebana of Atlanta. A lecture and demonstration regarding the art of Ikebana.

Wednesday, June 19, 7 p.m. “The History of Collecting Japanese Art in Western Culture,” by Mr. John Daniel Tilford, Collections Manager, OU Museum of Art. A chronological study of Western collectors of Japanese art beginning in the mid 19th century.

Artist unknown. Arita, Japan, late 17th century. Collection of Oglethorpe University. Gift of Carrie Lee Jacobs Henderson.

Wednesday, June 26, 7 p.m. “The Genius of Hiroshi Yoshida,” by Dr. Robert Steen, Oglethorpe University Professor of Japanese Language and Literature. A lecture regarding Yoshida’s life, work, travel, and the interplay of language, culture and landscape imagery.

Wednesday, July 10, 7 p.m. “US/Japan Joint Educational Endeavor in Atlanta – Raising Global Citizens Who Are Peacemakers,” by Ms. Minako Oki Ahearn, Principal of the Seigakuin Atlanta International School. A lecture about the education of Japanese American children in Georgia.

Wednesday, July 17, 7 p.m. “History and Methods of Color Woodcut,” by Ms. Elizabeth Peterson, Director, OU Museum of Art. A lecture exploring the European and Asian origin of color woodcut and the techniques and process of printing in this traditional media.

Wednesday, July 24, 7 p.m. “Shibumi: Elegant Simplicity in Japanese Clay,” by Mr. Roderick A. Hardy, Owner, Hardy & Halpern Appraisers. A lecture regarding the Carrie Lee Jacobs Henderson Collection of Japanese porcelain.

The exhibition is supported by The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation, the Japan Foundation (New York), and the Georgia Council for the Arts. OUMA is open Tuesday-Sunday. Admission: $5; free for OUMA members or with a Petrel Pass. More information: museum.oglethorpe.edu.

 

Room for improvement

The restored former office fo the late President Thornwell Jacobs

Anybody remember Room 101 in Hearst? Didn’t think so. It was a kind of hybrid, not really a classroom, sort of a seminar room, sometimes used for food spreads for things like Parents’ Weekend and OU Passport.  It was also the former office of the late OU President Thornwell Jacobs.

It was Thornwell Jacob’s vision that returned the campus to the Atlanta area. Carrie Lee Henderson, Jacobs’ granddaughter, provided the initial inspiration for reconnecting to her father’s tenure as president at Oglethorpe University (1915-1943). But leave it to those folks in the library to grab a nugget of history and spin a vision around it.

Library Director Anne Salter proposed taking the room back to its former glory, to the days in the first half of the 20th Century when Jacobs sat behind a big desk and ran Oglethorpe University with great aplomb.

The goal was to complete the work and outfit the room as an archival museum filled with photos, memorabilia and historic timelines before Alumni Weekend in April. All systems were go: demolish a fake wall that covered the beautiful leaded glass doors from the inside; repair and replace broken crown mould along the ceiling; pull up the carpet squares that had been glued to the original hardwood floors; replace broken panes in the windows; repair the transom over the door and remove glue from the fireplace hearth and add a final touch – a fresh coat of warm, buttery paint.

Thornwell Jacobs

Much of the electrical was rewired in the process, too; an old air conditioning unit was removed and granite blocks seamlessly filled the gap. The restoration was completed, and the room is a warm treasure trove to explore and enjoy. Please make a point to visit!