Research Institute for Japanese Arts to be Established in Tokyo,
with SEN Soshitsu XVI as Director

A press conference was held on September 18, 2009, at the Meiji Memorial Hall in Tokyo's Minato ward, at which Chairman TOKUYAMA Shochoku of the Uryuyama Gakuen Educational Foundation, who serves also as chairman of the Japan Arts Foundation, announced that a new Research Institute for Japanese Arts is to be established at Tokyo's Meiji Shrine Gaien (outer park), as a joint project of the Kyoto University of Art and Design (Kyoto Zokei Geijutsu Daigaku) and Tohoku University of Art and Design (Tohoku Geijutsu Koka Daigaku), which are sister universities under the umbrella of the Uryuyama Gakuen. The two universities will build a Gaien Campus (tentative name), where the research institute will be established. It was also announced that SEN Soshitsu XVI, Iemoto of the Urasenke chado tradition, will be the Director of the institute. Among those participating in the press conference were Meiji Shrine Representative Officer IWAMOTO Yoshitaka, Iemoto SEN Soshitsu XVI, President SENJU Hiroshi of the Kyoto University of Art and Design, and President MATSUMOTO Tetsuo of the Tohoku University of Art and Design.
            According to their joint statement, the institute will serve as a center for arts education which the general public can easily access. It will invite business enterprises and young creative thinkers to undertake collaborative projects, research, and practical programs aimed at reaching long-term solutions to social issues, and it will sponsor seminars ranging from the traditional arts to modern art design for adults, and educational programs for children on themes related to Japan's natural environment and culture. It is anticipated that the institute will become a base for people, regardless of age or profession, to convene and investigate how Japanese culture can contribute to building a peaceful world, and a base for exercising the resulting ideas.