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Exhibition Features

Learn more about the stories and themes behind the exhibition Japan: Courts and Culture. Select an article below to read on.

12 Materials in Japanese Art

A glossary of some of the most important substances in Japanese art

12 Symbols in Japanese Art

A guide to several recurring motifs found in Japanese art

Nature in Japanese Art

The natural world has been a central theme of Japanese art and culture for millennia

Cherry Blossom

One of the most recognisable symbols of Japan

A Coronation Gift for Queen Elizabeth II

An exceptional work of lacquerware selected by the Japanese Emperor

The First Royal Visitor to Japan

Queen Victoria's second son Prince Alfred visited Japan in 1869

Folding Screen Paintings

Restoring a rediscovered diplomatic gift from Japan

Royal Tattoos

Early royal visitors to Japan brought souvenirs back with them – and sometimes ON them