Art Promenade

Narita Airport is a vibrant place where people and things are always coming and going every day.
Did you know that even a busy place like Narita Airport has quiet places for people to relax?
In fact, there are many works of art in areas that visitors use in passing.
In this corner, we will introduce these works of art and suggest a new way to spend your time at Narita Airport.
We hope the art you encounter will enliven the first step on your journey...

Areas Outside Passport Control (Outgoing)

1F

Dawn Light

Eriko Horiki, Eriko Horiki & Associates

The theme expresses the gentle dawn light that envelopes everything on this earth and is the source of all energy.
The techniques of paper making, handed down from ancient times, produce an atmosphere and feeling of warmth.

Location

Terminal 1 1F

4F

B.S.EAST/V.O.WEST

Tetsuya Nakamura

Sculptures symbolizing aircraft.
B. S. East (Blue Sky East) is an expression of the clouds of the East while V. O. West (Violet Ocean West) depicts the waves of the West. The idea for this artwork is conceived from the fact that the sun rises in the Eastern sky and sinks into the Western sea.
The clouds are based on the Unchu Kuyo Bodhisattva of Byodo-in Temple, and the waves are based on the Kaibu Mon-yo, a traditional Japanese wave pattern often used on kimono. 
B. S. East is 4.5 meters high, 2.2 meters wide and 1.6 meters long, and V. O. West is 4.5 meters high, 2.4 meters wide and 1.6 meters long.

Location

Terminal 1 4F

4F

Busy South Wing, Narita Airport/Airplanes, Narita Airport

Akira Yamaguchi

Perspectives of the present, past and future depicted by Narita Airport.
Busy South Wing, Narita Airport depicts the inside and outside of the passenger terminal but with travelers and facilities from the Edo period. Expression is, in some parts, timeless and depicts a bustling Narita Airport.
Airplanes, Narita Airport depicts luxurious three-level aircraft with hot spring facilities and tatami rooms, flying through yellow clouds from which appears Narita Airport as a castle.
This is a copy of the intricately drawn water-color original transferred on to ceramic panels to hang mural style and is 3.8 meters high and 3 meters long.
The closer you get, the more delightful detail you can see.

Location

Terminal 1 4F

4F

THE UNIVERSE

Yoko Yamamoto

An enormous stained glass work created from an original by Yoko Yamamoto. Person to person, nation to nation, cooperating and working together is of supreme importance in preserving world peace. All conflicts around the world would cease if this was engraved in the hearts of men. That is the message conveyed by this work.

Location

Terminal 1 4F

4F

Image of an Angel

Seibo Kitamura

The rising sun symbolizes a bright future while the angel flying freely through the skies of Japan expresses a wish for a safe journey and world peace.

Location

Terminal 1 4F

4F

Angels in Flight

Kiyoshi Awazu

A huge stained glass work created from an original by Kiyoshi Awazu. This works depicts angels dancing freely and overflows with brilliance and kindness. It expresses the joyful hearts of a first encounter.

Location

Terminal 1 4F

4F

Glass Tower - Town in a Pristine Natural Environment

Itoko Iwata

This work has become the symbol of the departure lobby in Terminal 1. Depicting a town in a pristine natural environment, it uses colors to represent blue sky and water, trees and thicket, flowers and blossoms, and fertility on a light green earth and the various colors draw the attention of travelers.

Location

Terminal 1 4F


Areas Inside Passport Control (Outgoing)

3F

Flower of Time

Naoya Sakagami

The overlapping petals of the Flower of Time change shape with a graceful beauty with each step taken. In the distinct four seasons of Japan, the perfume of flowers delivers the message of each season while the phases of the moon tell us of the passing of time.

Location

Terminal 1 3F

3F

Japan/All Things are Connected

Masami Takahashi, MASAMI DESIGN

The viewer first encounters twin symmetrical gold and silver murals extending for 30 meters representing the golden country of Jipang and the land of the rising sun, Japan. Images of goldfish flying through space and time draw one to the story of the panels and Japan itself. While simultaneously showcasing the famous industry and technology of Japan, the design has been conceived for the principal purpose of promoting Japan.

Location

Terminal 1 3F


Areas Outside Passport Control (Incoming)

4F

Ceramic Panels on the Arrival Concourses in Satellites 1 & 2

Tadashi Kawai Studio, Yamashina-ku, Kyoto City

Ceramic Panels on the Arrival Concourses in Satellite 3 and the South Wing

Kunishiro Co., Ltd., Seto City, Aichi Prefecture

After:The present arrival concourse on the 4th floor of Satellite 2 in Terminal 1.

After:The present arrival concourse on the 2nd floor of the South Wing in Terminal 1. © Horoshi Shinozawa

Before:Departure lobby in the South Wing, Terminal 1 before refurbishment (the panels can be seen on the rear wall).

Rows of impressive ceramic panels line the walls in the arrival concourses in Satellites 1, 2 and 3, and the South Wing.
They once adorned the walls in the departure lobbies of the North and South Wings but most of the ceramic tiles were damaged in an earthquake off the East coast in Chiba in 1987. Fortunately, some remained intact and were put in storage.
Terminal 1 underwent a major refurbishment and emerged with totally new designs in the North Wing, which reopened in 1999, and the South Wing, which reopened in 2006.
It was then that the ceramic panels were taken out of their prolonged hibernation and those which were once in the North Wing departure lobby were placed on the walls of the arrival concourses in Satellites 1 & 2, and those which were in the South Wing departure lobby now adorn the arrival concourse in the South Wing.
* These art works can be seen on the 2nd floor.

Location

Terminal 1 3F

Areas Outside Passport Control (Outgoing)

3F

Sun, Moon and Four Seasons

Original by Matazou Kayama

A giant 3.5 meter high, 39.2 meter long mural with the layout of a folding screen installed in the central part of the departure lobby in Terminal 2. This ceramic piece was commissioned to one of Japan's most famous Nihonga (Japanese-style painting) artists, the late Matazou Kayama with the mandate to create a work that symbolized Japan and was a suitable creation for the airport in its role as the gateway to the nation.
The theme follows the four distinct seasons which is a characteristic feature of Japan with frequent use of gold and platinum colors. To bring out the best in the original-based ceramic panels, the "translation" of the original to the ceramic was done under the instructions of Kayama himself. The Master paid particularly attention to the way in which the four seasons of Japan would produce a gentle atmosphere in a passenger terminal environment comprising concrete, steel and sharp silhouettes.

Location

Terminal 2 3F

1F

Red & White Camellia/Purple Iris

Ikko Tanaka

Sitting conspicuously in the Terminal 2 arrival lobby, these ceramics adorn the north and south ends. The south end of the arrival lobby features the Red & White Camellia and the Purple Iris is at the north end. Rather than use different color glazing, the design of the flowers is divided into the petal color and the stem color with large ceramic panels in various curved shapes fitting together like a giant jigsaw puzzle.

Location

Terminal 2 1F


Areas Outside Passport Control (Incoming)

2F

Wood

Craftsman: Shoun Kano (Fujimi-mura, Gunma Prefecture); Art Direction: Sachio Yoshioka

©  Forward Stroke Inc

In Japan, with its distinctive change in seasons and high humidity, houses are built with timber which harks back to nature.
This exhibit comprises flat panels and wooden frames, incorporating the designs of Japanese furniture and fittings. It uses precious virgin timber (cedar, katsura, Japanese cypress, Japanese zelkova) to emphasize the beauty of the grain in the tree which has formed itself over the years and months.
Using intricate planing skills of a master craftsman, Kano has revealed the true beauty of the grain. He emphasizes that beauty by applying wax, another natural material, to the surface to prolong its life.
A round, drum-like, three-dimensional object has been set in the middle, through which one may be able to feel the warmth of the timber.

Location

Terminal 2 1F

2F

Earth

Craftsman: Tadao Kaneko (Funabashi City, Chiba Prefecture); Art Direction: Sachio Yoshioka

©  Forward Stroke Inc

Earth has long been used as building material in various countries, not just Japan. Plastering, the art of using crude earth as a beautiful, functionally superior finish to a wall, is a well-known tradecraft in Japan.
As a Japanese earthen wall, this work is a combination of the residual expression of earth and Tosa-style lime plaster, which has a deep effect even in plaster walls. The stepping creates depth and expression in the wall surface.

Location

Terminal 2 2F

2F

Tile

Craftsman: Kiyoshi Igarashi (Fujioka City, Gunma Prefecture); Art Direction: Sachio Yoshioka

©  Forward Stroke Inc

Tiles are used on the roofs of timber houses in Japan. Today, there is increasing demand for Western tiles and Japanese tiles are mostly mechanically shaped and fired in gas or electric kilns. However, the tiles on display here have been fired in a traditional kiln known as a darumagama.
The difference between kilns that produce tiles and those that produce ceramics is the shape. With a tile kiln, the tiles are stacked in the center and the fuel for the fire is added from the sides. Instead of covering the tiles directly with ash (glaze), the tiles are smoked to produce an ink black color and improve fire resistance. The ink black color of the tiles produced by the kiln varies and has an important significance.
This exhibit emphasizes the wave shaped curves by aligning the tiles simply to convey the beauty of the smooth curves formed individually by hand. The snow guard tiles third from the bottom are not just a statement of style, they demonstrate the knowledge accumulated in areas where snow is heavy.

Location

Terminal 2 2F

2F

Ceramics

Craftsman: Shigemi Mitoma (Shigaraki City, Saga Prefecture); Art Direction: Sachio Yoshioka

©  Forward Stroke Inc

Long ago, ascending kilns (large kilns that rotated the fire using an incline to fire more effectively) were used for the mass production of ceramics but because of the cost, gas kilns are mostly used today. Although there are a few ascending kills in operation, they are very rare. One of those rare ascending kilns was put to work to fire this exhibit and demonstrate the traditional technique.
Ascending kilns are fueled by Japanese red pine 24-hours-a-day for five or six days. Tiles placed near the opening of the kiln are glazed by the thick covering of red pine ash, producing a glass-like surface finish. Those near the top become a reddish color called scarlet of increasing intensity, the further up they are placed in the kiln.
No two tiles are alike in terms of the expression (view) emitted by the natural ash.

Location

Terminal 2 2F

2F

Lacquer

Craftsman: Hideaki Yamamoto (Sabae City, Fukui Prefecture); Art Direction: Sachio Yoshioka

©  Forward Stroke Inc

Negoro Lacquer is produced in a process in which vermillion lacquer is applied as a finishing coat over several layers of black lacquer primer. The technique has been used for several thousand years and remains today as a traditional lacquer ware method. In this exhibit, the vermillion and black lacquer are applied side by side in equal parts in a lucid design to achieve an unobstructed view of the simple yet powerful beauty.
Negoro Lacquer is used on containers and other everyday items and through this frequent, daily use, the black primer coat begins to appear under the vermillion top coat. In the Japanese sense of aesthetics, seeing the beauty in the patterns that emerge over the years, it is possible to comprehend the respect for nature and life. Therefore, this exhibit displays the underlying current of aesthetics in Japan by removing the patterns and showing the Negoro Lacquer in its original state.
Through the polishing process, the surfaces give off a mirror-like gloss which reflects the images of the passing traffic and the colors appear to change depending on the location of the viewer.

Location

Terminal 2 1F

2F

Maki-e

Craftsman: Kozo Banura (Omihachiman City, Shiga Prefecture); Art Direction: Sachio Yoshioka

©  Forward Stroke Inc

Maki-e is the utilizing of characteristics of lacquer to achieve a higher level of decorative beauty. It is the process of creating a picture or pattern and sprinkling gold dust over it before the lacquer dries. This type of lacquer art is unique to Japan and is famous worldwide.
This exhibit uses the silver grass pattern from Kodaiji Temple lacquer ware to portray the beauty of patterns that abstract nature.
The different shades of vermillion are arranged in a way that shows interesting changes with the outer eight panels rendered in a bright washed-out vermillion and the inner four panels in a deep vermillion. To draw out the vermillion maki-e, patterns have been left off the interspersing black maki-e. Gold is more frequent in the central maki-e to draw on the introspective nature of the exhibit.

Location

Terminal 2 2F

2F

Porcelain

Craftsman: Hiroshi Iwanaga (Arita Town, Saga Prefecture); Art Direction: Sachio Yoshioka

©  Forward Stroke Inc

Imari ware is one of the leading types of porcelain in Japan and is said to have had an influence on Meissen porcelain art. This exhibit is a display of the works produced by the craftsmen with the traditional techniques used by Imari when cobalt was the only color used for art work in the early days of Imari ware, and who draw the art by hand and glaze with natural materials.
Art work on these porcelain plates are perfected in the given shape. The plates are therefore exhibited as they are without altering them into flat panels. Craftsmen producing traditional Imari ware add their own elements to the art. Every piece is different and that diversity can be seen here.
By displaying familiar porcelain items in an orderly way, the exhibit blends harmoniously with the surrounding architecture, yet the numerous plates and their uniquely individual designs draw the viewer into its own little universe.

Location

Terminal 2 1F

2F

Gold Leaf

Craftsman: Shiho Kasama (Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture); Art Direction, Sachio Yoshioka

©  Forward Stroke Inc

Gold in Japan has not been mined in any great amount and because of its rarity, a technique has developed where it is manually flattened out into leaf.
In this exhibit, real gold leaf is pasted over top quality washi paper in the same way as it was used in the past when gold leaf was used as the background for artwork on fusuma (sliding doors) and folding screens, inviting the viewer into a world of luxury.
Underneath, several layers of washi paper are pasted over a wooden panel so that the exhibit can withstand changes in temperature, adhering to the traditional method for producing fusuma.

Location

Terminal 2 2F

2F

Bamboo

Craftsman: Michihito Matsui (Kyoto City, Kyoto Prefecture); Art Direction: Sachio Yoshioka

©  Forward Stroke Inc

Bamboo is used in Tanabata and for the kadomatsu decoration at New Year and it is also used for the imidake decoration erected for ground-breaking ceremonies. It is revered in Japan because its straight growth and longevity is seen as auspicious and a symbol of purity and it plays a significant role in Japanese society. The bamboo fence is also seen in this light. They undergo various processes by craftsmen and are used as a decorative feature of Japanese gardens because of their structural beauty.
This is a taimatsugaki fence. The bamboo is split and put back together as a means of preventing splitting through drying and to enhance its decorative beauty.
Alternating the bamboo in a one forward/one back combination creates a beautiful three dimensional effect. Smoked, dark bamboo is used for the cross rails and the black twine contrasts beautifully with the light colored bamboo.

Location

Terminal 2 2F

2F

Stone

Craftsman: Katsuyoshi Matsuzaki (Kyoto City); Art Direction: Sachio Yoshioka

©  Forward Stroke Inc

Although stone in Japan is not used for walls in the same way as the West, it has been used in the foundations of castles, to support the wooden columns in temples and shrines and as structural supports. Rocks have also been used for formative beauty in Japanese gardens.
This exhibit illustrates the strength of rock walls and displays the formative beauty of interlocked stone. The exhibit is based on the high stone walls of the Kikokutei Gardens at Higashi-Hongan-ji Temple.
The series of large Kurama stones from top left to lower right seem to flow invitingly down to a Kutsunugi stone which is often used by guests to slip their shoes off when being invited in. The elements of visitors and crossroads which are central to a place such as an airport are expressed here with traditional arrangements used in Japanese gardens.
All of the rocks are from Japan (about 8 to 10 varieties).

Location

Terminal 2 2F

2F

Folding Screens (Crimson)

Sachio Yoshioka (Kyoto City)

©  Forward Stroke Inc

Paper is indispensible to day-to-day life for the Japanese. Paper is used to craft everything from fittings and furniture such as sliding doors, shoji screens and folding screens, to lamps, lanterns and other lighting as well as hinges on folding screens. Although it tears easily, it can be mended and repaired time after time. We should value the bounties of Mother Nature and, like the flora that prospers and declines with each season, accept and make do with the changes that are brought with the passing of time. It is that spirit in Japan that is expressed in the culture of paper.
Therein also lies the aesthetic significance of art on sliding doors and folding screens to welcome guests. At both ends of the arrival course, there are folding screen works which have been plant dyed in the two colors representative of Japan, crimson and indigo by Somenotsukasa Yoshioka. The paper used in this installation is top quality washi made in the studio of Shinji Idani from Hiigawa in Shimane Prefecture and framed by Gengo Suzuki. The folding screens created by the cumulative skills of these artisans radiate a gentle, lamp-like glow to welcome visitors to Japan.

Location

Terminal 2 2F