Kurowarabi So Sculpture exhibition

Kurowarabi So Sculpture exhibition

Familiar with wood carving since early childhood, the self-taught artist Kurowarabi So developed his unique style as he continued to sculpt even while working as a computer engineer. Making a name for himself as a prize-winning artist at a number of public-invitation exhibitions throughout Japan from the 1980s, in 2015 he received the Hirakushi Denchū Award for notable Japanese wood sculptors.

Kurowarabi pays great attention to detail, closely mimicking the textures of  what he sculpts — whether cloth, shoes, or insects — while addressing relevant social issues and making statements about the human heart. Viewers find themselves drawn into the world of his subjects — seeing themselves or others as silhouettes overlapping everyday objects or parts of the body, as reflected in the mind of the artist.

This exhibition shows both early works and newer ones, including “Chotto kyūkei (Have a break)” (1985), a highly acclaimed piece now in the museum’s private collection. We trust that visitors will capture glimpses of the recurring themes in Kurowarabi’s artistic endeavors and see how his forms of expression relate to one another.

SponsorKirishima Open-Air Museum

SponsorshipYusui town / Yusui town Board of education


Minami-Nippon Shimbun Co., Ltd. / The Asahi Shimbun Company / Yomiuri Shimbun / Minaminihon Broadcasting Co., Ltd. / Kagoshima Television Station Co.,Ltd. / Kagoshima Broadcasting Corporation / Kagoshima Yomiuri Television / FM Kagoshima


《Anote・Konote》(2009-2010) Photo by FUKUOKA Sakae

《Sou Shoku danshi (Kuwagata)》(2016) Photo by FUKUOKA Sakae

Chotto kyūkei (Have a Break)》(1985) Owned by Kirishima Open-Air museum

* Click here for the exhibition flyer

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Kirishima Open-Air Museum Art Hall
Holding period
2020/05/08 〜 2020/07/05
Closed on Mondays.(except when Monday is a national holiday, in which case the museum is closed on Tuesday.)
Viewing time
9:00-17:00 (last entry : 16:30)
Admission fee
General Public : ¥320 (¥250) / High School・University Students : ¥210 (¥160) / Elementary・Middle School Students : ¥150 (¥120)*Figures in parentheses are admission fees for groups of 20 or more.*Admission free for residents of Kagoshima Prefecture over 70.*Students of elementary, junior high and senior high schools within Kagoshima Prefecture admitted free of charge on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays. (proof of age, school enrollment required)



Kurowarabi So
Born in Akune City, Kagoshima Prefecture in 1951, wood sculptor Kurowarabi So presently lives in Aichi Prefecture.
He studied under sculptor Horiuchi Masakazu (1911-2001) starting in 1984, winning grand prizes at both the 1st Contemporary Japanese Woodcarving Festival (1988) and the Asahikawa Award for Contemporary Wood Art (1996).
In 2015 he received the Hirakushi Denchū Award, one of Japan's top awards in sculpture. He has also held numerous solo and group exhibits.
Kurowarabi participated in the artist-in-residence project in the event of the first anniversary of the opening of the museum’s main building in 2001.