An Afternoon at the Hakone Open-Air Museum

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Last week, I took a short trip to Hakone, a popular Japanese resort town located about 80 minutes outside of Tokyo by limited express train. I have a number of photos and stories to share with you, but I thought I’d start with the Hakone Open-Air Museum, which is often considered to be one of the biggest attractions of the area. The park displays over 120 sculptures over an area of 70,000 square meters, including pieces by famous artists such as Henry Moore (the piece pictured above is Moore’s “Reclining Figure: Arch Leg”).

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The park is set on the side of the mountain near the Chokoku no Mori Station, and I really liked the way that the various pieces were set into the landscape.

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Obviously, I can’t show you even a fraction of the works on display. I liked the piece above, “Weeping Woman” by Francoise Xavier and Claude Lalanne. In addition to the outdoor sculptures, the museum also has an indoor gallery which houses a large collection of works by Picasso, including an assortment of his pottery, which I’d never seen before. I think the most interesting pieces were a series of pencil sketches of Picasso’s bride, each similar yet a bit different. Unfortunately, photographs weren’t allowed inside the gallery—but if you go to the museum, I’d definitely recommend taking a look at the Picasso Pavilion.

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The museum seems like it would be a great place to take children; there are a number of exhibits that can be climbed on/in. We were a bit sad that we were too old/big to play on this amazing installation entitled “Woods of Net.”

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But my companions did take advantage of this maze, which fortunately had no age limit:

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Anyway, it was a very interesting museum and quite a nice place to spend a couple of hours on a nice day. Definitely stop by if you visit Hakone.

This post is being submitted to Travel Photo Thursday.

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