The Otsuka Museum of Art, located near the Naruto Channel in Tokushima, is a gigantic museum with an exhibition space of 29,412 square meters on three floors underground and two floors aboveground. The museum was established in 1998 to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Otsuka Group, one of the major corporate groups in Japan.
Upon entering the museum you will see famous works by world-renowned artists including mural paintings of ancient Pompeii, Romanesque paintings, paintings by Rembrandt, Da Vince’, Michelangelo, van Gogh, Picasso and others. However, the most unique feature of this museum is that all the works being exhibited are replicas – faithful reproductions on ceramic boards produced to their original sizes, which is why this museum is also called the “Ceramic board masterpiece art museum”. The masterpieces in question have been reproduced on ceramic panels using special techniques that are said to have remained unchanged for more than 2000 years. Replicas of more than 1000 masterpieces from collections of over 190 museums in 25 countries in the world are exhibited at the museum.
You might think that pictures reproduced on ceramic board will look completely different from the original paintings, considering the smooth surface of common ceramics. However, the special techniques that are used reproduce the delicate textures of fresco and oil paintings. The quality of the reproductions is supported by the many endorsements and compliments they receive from the museums and churches that own the original artworks. Visitors to the museum can – by way of the reproductions – appreciate the true artistic value of the original works and experience the ambience of art museums and religious establishments around the world, a much more inclusive experience than viewing images in textbooks or art books. World famous chapels such as the Sistine and Scrovegni chapels, as well as ancient ruins have been carefully reproduced to their original size and detail, making viewers feel as if they are actually at the original site. In addition, the museum also includes a reproduction of ″Guernica” by Pablo Picasso, which cannot be moved, and has gathered together the pieces of El Greco’s high altar panels, which were dispersed during war, to their original status.
It requires walking 4km in all to view all the pieces in order; therefore, prepare to spend an entire day at the museum. It is worth the visit, however, as you will be able to view a significant number of masterpieces in one place, even though they are replicas.
OTSUKA MUSEUM OF ART
[Address] Naruto Park, Naruto-cho, Naruto-shi, Tokushima
55 min. from JR Tokushima Station
9:30 am to 5:00 pm
Closed on Monday (If a public holiday falls on the Monday, the museum will be closed the following day)
* The museum will be closed for five consecutive days after the New Year
holiday in January and will be open throughout August
Elementary, junior high school and high school students: 540 yen/university students: 2160 yen/Adults: 3240 yen (all inclusive of consumption tax)
* Ticket counter closes at 16:00