Global On-Site Training Program for Young Researchers on the Protection of Cultural Heritage and Art Work

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Reports by ITP Participants

Reports from Participants in FY 2010

Shinya MAEZAKIPostdoctral Fellow, Kinugasa Research Organization, Ritsumeikan University
Brief SummaryI have researched and photographed Japanese ceramic wares in the collections of National Museums Scotland, Museum fur Kunst und Gewerbe Humburg, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, Narodni galerie v Praze (1,150 works, 11,000 images).
I gave a lecture at the World Culture Section at the National Museums Scotland. I discussed about significances of my digitization projects for the studies of Japanese arts and cultures and new research possibilities using an images database ceramics.
All the museums and owners of the collections showed interests in the project (Preservation of digital images of Japanese cultural objects in the Western collections). They recognized the importance of fostering a research connection to the Center of Digital Humanities at Ritsumeikan University. As most of them own not only ceramic works but also other Japanese cultural objects, this network will contribute to the preservation of more works and to the development of new researches.

Monika BINCSIK2nd year of the doctoral program, Graduate School of Letters, Ritsumeikan University
Brief SummaryI have studied in detail and digitised the Japanese lacquer collections of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Also carried out research in the archives, discovering valuable documents and sources. At the Columbia University I have been researching mainly archival and library material to study the reception of Japanese art in the USA and the formation of the Japanese collections preserved in various museums. The research completed on the artworks at the MFA and the work done in the libraries and archives allowed to achieve a complete picture of collecting Japanese lacquer art in the USA. I have delivered five presentations on the subject while being in the USA.
I have digitised the Japanese lacquer collections of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, preparing 5,000 images plus 600 photographs taken through a microscope. The results will be included in the database “Japanese Lacquers in Foreign Collections” I have been working on in the ARC. I also will publish the research results, especially those on Edo period maki-e as a scholarly publication. Planning to complete an article on the collecting history of Japanese lacquer in the USA. I had the opportunity to present my research results five times while being in the USA, this way exchanging information with the specialists and fostering further cooperation.
I was working in English language environment and using an English database (TMS) while conducting research at the MFA in Boston. I had the opportunity to work together with various Museum departments, including curatorial, collection management, information technology and conservation staff. In New York City I was exchanging information and working together with University professors, archivists, librarians, curators, collectors and students of Japanese art. I had the opportunity to establish new contacts and launch research projects for future cooperation.

Masako YAMAMOTOPostdoctral Fellow, Kinugasa Research Organization, Ritsumeikan University
Brief Summary
  • Masako Yamamoto. : Yamanaka & Company and their Overseas Activities. International Exchange モノの移動・イメージの受容・変容,SOAS・Brunei Gallery, London, the United Kingdom 2010.9.18,(in English)
  • Research for textile designs and materials in The Victoria and Albert Museum, Musée de l’Impression sur Etoffes,and,Musées des Tissus et des Arts Décoratifs de Lyon.
  • We held the international workshop “International Exchange モノの移動・イメージの受容・変容”in SOAS and I presented my research results in English. The participants discussed about an acculturation of images and cultures through the exchange of Japanese Art. I worked on digitalizing the collection of Musées Royaux d’Art et d’Histoire and Bibliothèque royale de Belgique in Bruxelles. I had a research for textile designs and materials in The Victoria and Albert Museum, Musée de l’Impression sur Etoffes, and Musées des Tissus et des Arts Décoratifs de Lyon, and this research will help to demonstrate the close connection between textile designs of modern Japanese and those of modern Europe. In Lyon, I researched by working with graduate student of le Département d’Etudes japonaises de l’Université Lyon 3.

    Mizuho KAMO2nd year of the doctoral program, Graduate School of Letters, Ritsumeikan University
    Brief SummaryResearch activities: I have studied and digitized Japanese illustrated books and Ukiyo-e prints held in the collections of the British museum. Presentation: I had an oral presentation on Meiji period Katagami and Yuzen design at the SOAS. Since I have introduced a new subject, and unpublished material that I have been digitizing at the ARC, I have received very positive feedback from the audiences.
    We have organized a workshop focusing on young scholars. I have established connections with European scholars and doctoral students majoring in Japanese studies. This workshop made it possible to invite young scholars to present their research results at the international workshop to be held at the ARC, in December 2010.

    Chise SAITO3rd year of the doctoral program, Graduate School of Letters, Ritsumeikan University
    Brief SummaryDuring the term I organized and spoke at an international symposium “International Exchange” at the School of Oriental and African Studies(SOAS) of the University ‘of London. I also visited Italy to digitize woodblock prints preserved at the National Oriental Art Museum in Rome, Chiossone Museum in Genoa and Venice Oriental Art Museum collaborating with the postgraduate students of the University of Venice and a young Italian researcher. Moreover I have researched an inventory survey about the Japanese Artworks dotting in Italy.
    I could individually locate all Japanese Artworks that haven’t been cleared in terms of their details or information until now. I also could figure out specific practical problems by the hearing investigation in the field that I conducted with collection handlers in order to realize and make light on the information regarding Japanese Artworks. I’m going to report these fruits on the academic journal Art Documentation Kenkyu vol.18 that will be published in March 2011.

    Minsuk KIMPostdoctral Fellow, Ritsumeikan Global Innovation Research Organization, Ritsumeikan University
    Brief SummaryThe purpose of this study is to examine the roof structure types and its conservation conditions of historic wooden buildings in Korea after Sungnyemun gate fire occurred in 2008. Contents of this research can be summarized as follows:
    1. Survey of facilities for disaster mitigation and the history of post-disaster recovery and restoration / reconstruction(investigation of documents)
    2. Analysis of roof materials and roof structure type of historic wooden buildings in Korea
    3. Survey on present condition of facilities for disaster mitigation of historic wooden buildings in Korea after Sungnyemun gate fire (field work, hearing investigation)
    4. Investigation on manuals for the safe of the Korean wooden cultural properties(buildings)
    To study on disaster mitigation for cultural heritages is not engineering but is interdisciplinary researches. However its social consciousness in Korea is still low. In addition, communication between conservation experts for cultural properties and disaster prevention experts was absent, which have a bad influence on cultural properties. However, the setting of the disaster mitigation facilities for the cultural properties (buildings) in Korea which advanced rapidly in these several years and the guard system reminded experts of the reflection in various fields and repeated exchange of opinions or/and discussion with the researchers and experts who were interested in disaster mitigation studies for cultural heritage through a symposium and a workshop, and site visiting.. I introduced not only the disaster mitigation cases of cultural heritages in Japan but also the activity of Research Center for Disaster Mitigation of Urban Cultural Heritage, Ritsumeikan University, so the Korean researchers showed interests and hoped to interchange continuously.

    Yusuke TOYODA1st year of the doctoral program, Graduate School of Policy Science, Ritsumeikan University
    Brief SummaryAs one of the activities of UNISDR, I documented good practices on disaster reduction of two role model cases which were designated by UNISDR. One is Albay Province in the Philippines which has old churches as its tourism resource which damaged heavily by volcanic eruption. Another is Patong Municipality in Thailand which has to consider disaster reduction of tourists as historical cities have to do. In addition, I presented my study on Japanese cases of disaster reduction against flood in an international conference (ACEE 2011) held in Thailand.
    I did documentation on inclusive measures against disaster of Albay Province (Philippines) and Patong Municipality (Thailand), both of which were designated as role model cities by UNISDR. The documentation was conducted based on ten-point checklist which was invented by UNISDR for its international campaign. The outcomes of my documentation are: to point out the importance of information dissemination in coordination with other institutions by redundant communication systems to disaster reduction, which can be adapted to disaster reduction of cultural heritages; to show good practices of developing countries which activities tend to focus on soft dimension for the limitation of its budget, which can be referred to by Japan which hard dimension is developed further than developing countries, and; to introduce good practices for inclusive measures against disaster considering residents, tourists and cultural heritages. The documentation is based on the view of local administrations and international organizations, which would have been impossible for me to experience just if I had stayed at the center (DMUCH). This experience of documentation would contribute to study on disaster mitigation of cultural heritage by considering both sides of academics and practice.

    Nobushiro TAKAHASHI1st year of the doctoral program, Graduate School of Letters, Ritsumeikan University
    Brief SummaryI photographed/digitalized Japanese scrolls at the British Museum. Among the whole collection of approximately 1900 works, I have photographed 40 scrolls altogether, of which 24 are hanging scrolls, and 16 are folding scrolls.
    Using the images which I photographed at this opportunity, I will create an image database of scrolls of Japanese art. Since the category of “scroll” encapsulates a variety of genres, this database should be designed to cover all sorts of painting. I will also carry out some research on a particular scroll which is directly related to my field, and publish it as an article for journal.