You will find this beautiful art museum nestled in the heart of Hotaka. Built in 1958 with the help of 300,000 local volunteers, it is a memorial to one of the region’s most prominent artists. The museum showcases the works of Rokuzan Ogiwara, a pioneer of modern Japanese sculpture, as well as those of his respected friends and colleagues.
In addition to the museum’s artwork, the museum’s all-brick and stained glass design is quite impressive. Built to resemble a church, the founders of the museum wanted to convey the artist’s Christian beliefs. On a sunny day, the museum grounds offer many wooden benches, which are great for relaxing and enjoying the architecture and the outdoor sculptures.
Many of Rokuzan’s sculptures seem to represent struggle and inner turmoil, which is reflected in his own personal life. At the age of 16, he was diagnosed with heart disease and struggled with health problems for the rest of his life. One of his most famous sculptures, and the last before his death, is simply titled Onna (Woman). This figure captures another struggle which Rokuzan endured, for the sculpture is said to represent that of his best friend’s wife, who Rokuzan secretly loved.
- 7 minute walk from JR Hotaka Station
15 minute drive from the Azumino Interchange
- 5095-1 Hotaka
- Adults: ¥700
High School Student: ¥300
Elementary and Junior High School Students: ¥150
- Mar to Oct 9 a.m.–5:10 p.m.
Nov to Feb 9 a.m.–4:10 p.m.
* Last entry 30 min before closing
- Mondays and the day after a holiday
* Open everyday May-Oct.