Shiki no Mori Oshino Park Koyo Okada Photo Museum and Koike Kunio Etegami Museum

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Consisting of two museums housed in a single building, this facility was established in 2004 by the local Oshino government as a base for hands-on learning and lifelong education. One of the museums centers around the photographic works of Koyo Okada (1895-1972), who dedicated his life to photographing Mount Fuji. The other features a collection of etegami (“picture letters”) by Kunio Koike (b. 1941). The lobby’s exhibition space also displays Mt. Fuji-related works by contemporary photographers, with a magnificent frontal view of the mountain from the window.

Originally from Niigata Prefecture, Koyo Okada first visited the village of Oshino in 1916. He became enamored by the views of Mt. Fuji, foregrounded by the village’s thatched farmhouses. After graduating from Waseda University, Okada became a professional photographer, embarking upon a lifelong journey of documenting the sacred mountain. He would go on to found the Mt. Fuji Photo Association, hold numerous exhibitions, and publish several photo books, taking some 400,000 photographs of Mt. Fuji during his lifetime.

Etegami were conceived in the 1960s, when up-and-coming calligrapher Kunio Koike became frustrated with the rigid constraints of traditional calligraphy. He began creating letters on which he combined loose, spontaneous ink drawings and thoughtfully chosen words. His idea of heta de ii, heta ga ii, meaning “awkwardness is fine, awkwardness has charm,” resonated with many, and etegami became a well-loved artform. For a small fee, which includes the cost of materials, visitors may try drawing their own etegami at the museum.

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Venue Address

401-0511 2838-1 Shibokusa, Oshino-mura, Minamitsuru-gun

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