Radiant Raden

The Nezu Museum

poster for Radiant Raden

Ends in 21 days

*The Nezu Museum has introduced an online timed-entry reservation system, for use by all visitors, as one of our measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Raden refers to a decorative technique using pieces of the linings of shells that have a lustrous, the nacre or mother-of-pearl layer. (Ra means a conch or other spiral shell, den implies decorating with shells.) Those glowing pieces are cut into the shapes of motifs and then inlayed or glued to the surface of the work. In Asia, raden was incorporated into the body of techniques used to decorate lacquerware. The principal shells used are great green turban shells and abalone shells, for their nacre is not plain white but glows with color gradations from blue to red, as though light is radiating from within. The world that these shells and the beautiful luster unique to lacquer weave has fascinated people for centuries.
This exhibition traces the history of the adoption of raden technqiues and their development in Japan, mainly through works in the Nezu Museum collection, while providing an opportunity to experience the fascination of radiant raden from China, the Korean Peninsula, Japan, and the Ryukyu Kingdom (now Okinawa prefecture).



from January 09, 2021 to February 14, 2021
Open on January 11. Closed on January 12. By appointment only.


http://www.nezu-muse.or.jp/en/ (venue's website)


Adults ¥1300, University and High School Students ¥1000, Junior High School Students and Under free.

Venue Hours

From 10:00 To 17:00
Closed on Mondays
Note:Open on public holiday Monday but closed on the following day. Closed during the New Year holidays and in between exhibitions.


Address: 6-5-1 Minami-Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo 107-0062
Phone: 03-3400-2536 Fax: 03-3400-2436

8 minute walk from exit A5 at Omotesando Station on the Ginza, Hanzomon and Chiyoda lines.

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