The Japanese Sword Museum
Tokyo Unique Venue Show Case Event ～TOKYO Cool Traditions～
July 8th, 2019 (Mon) 18:00～20:00
Japanese Sword Museum
Event / Program Overview
In order to promote the many charms and usage possibilities of Tokyo's unique venues, relevant parties were invited from companies, embassies, international organizations, media and more to a showcase event and reception, held at the Sword Museum in Ryogoku, Tokyo.
The event concept was set as “TOKYO Cool Traditions.” This phrase communicates the appeal of both “the Japanese sword as a work of art passed down through the ages” and, “the Edo Period atmosphere of the Former Yasuda Garden” located next to the Museum. Performances and attractions at the event effectively conveyed the fascination of Japanese swords and gardens to a domestic and global audience.
Main event venue and entertaiment
＜Wall of Building＞
The Japanese Sword Museum building, designed by one of Japan's leading architects, Fumihiko Maki, was specially illuminated for the event. The cobalt blue glow was very atmospheric, creating a fantastical atmosphere.
＜The Former Yasuda Garden＞
Bamboo lanterns were placed on the banks of the pond, gently illuminating the guests’ path while making the event feel extra special.
Prioritizing sustainability, bamboo lanterns were used, sourced from a locally gown bamboo forest park in Higashikurume City, in the Tama district of Tokyo.
In keeping with the event concept of TOKYO Cool Tradition, a refreshing bamboo centerpiece, representing summer in Japan was displayed for the guests’ enjoyment. The guests also listened to an invigorating fusion performance of shakuhachi, one of Japan’s most famous classical instruments, and jazz.
Edo-Tokyo vegetables and dishes using ingredients from Tokyo were served as a buffet. In consideration of the environment, “WASARA” plates were used for the dishes. These compostable paper containers are made of a material that disintegrates into soil, reducing the environmental impact of the event.
A swordsmanship performance using real swords and sword polishing demonstrations were also put on for the event. The sharpening demonstration performed by a researcher was a highlight – his evident concentration making for a tense atmosphere and breathtaking demonstration of skill. These special performances allowed participants Japanese sword culture first-hand, just as it has been passed down through the ages.
A Japanese sake bar was set up near the food table, and local sake from Tokyo was served in cooperation with the Tokyo Sake Brewer’s Association. A sake ambassador was present to assist with explanations and tasting advice about Japanese sake in Japanese and English, allowing the participants to enjoy the taste of Japanese sake to the full.
＜Exhibition Room / Information Corner＞
On the third floor of the venue, guests were able to see the “Contemporary Swords and Artworks” Exhibition. Including the sword that won the prestigious Takamatsunomiya Memorial Award, many swords and items of armor were on display. In addition, items from the Japanese Sword Museum's archive, including Important Cultural Properties, were specially displayed at the Information Corner on the first floor.
During the event, the guests were divided into four groups. Museum curators guided each group through the exhibition rooms and the Information Corner, offering explanations of the items. This allowed gusts the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the charm of the Japanese sword.
■Number of participants
109 people (from domestic companies, embassies in Tokyo, Chambers of Commerce, media organizations, etc.)