The National Art Center, Tokyo

Lee Ufan, 15th Anniversary of the National Art Center, Tokyo

Lee Ufan in Kamakura, 2022
Photo© Lee Ufan, photo: Shu Nakagawa

8/10(Wed) - 11/7(Mon) 10:00 - 18:00 (Last entry at 17:30)
*On Fridays and Saturdays, 10:00 –20:00 (Last entry 19:30)
*Closed on Tuesdays
The National Art Center, Tokyo Special Exhibition Gallery 1E
[Participation fee]
Adults ¥1700, College Students ¥1200, High School Students ¥800
This major retrospective exhibition showcases the work of Lee Ufan (born 1936), an artist synonymous with “Mono-ha,” one of the most influential movements in postwar Japan. Born in the South Gyeongsang Province of Korea, Lee spearheaded the “Mono-ha” movement from the late 1960s to early 1970s with measured combinations of natural and synthetic materials, both in artwork and in writing. This exhibition marks his first retrospective in Tokyo, and along with tracing the course of his creative journey, it presents his most recent works that demonstrate a fresh state of mind.


Lee Ufan

Born in Gyeongsangnam-do, Korea, in 1936, Lee attended Seoul National University before moving to Japan in 1956. He later studied philosophy at Nihon University. Lee is known as a leading figure in Mono-ha, one of the most significant art movements in postwar Japan, which emerged in the late ’60s.
His essay “From Object to Being” was awarded the Bijutsu Shuppan-sha Art Criticism Prize in 1969, and his book The Art of Encounter, which appeared in 1971, became the theoretical pillar for Mono-ha. His 2002 book The Art of Margins has been translated into English, French, and Korean, etc. In recent years, Lee, who has been consistently showing his work in Japan and abroad for over 50 years, has become increasingly active in other countries, holding solo exhibitions at the Guggenheim (New York, USA, 2011), Palace of Versailles (Versailles, France, 2014) and Centre Pompidou-Metz (Metz, France, 2019). Meanwhile in Japan, the Lee Ufan Museum, designed by the architect Ando Tadao, opened on the island of Naoshima in Kagawa Prefecture in 2010.