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Event Details

The Shogun's Cultured Warriors

7 June 2016 - 27 November 2016
Oriental Museum

An exhibition exploring the role of the samurai class as patrons and producers of the arts, together with their legacy in Japan today.

The samurai were the military class of Japan who developed from provincial warriors into the ruling elite. They were a powerful force in Japan for more than six centuries and so had a profound effect on military and political life. High ranking warriors were also expected to develop their literary skills and they played an active role as patrons of the arts. This exhibition explores the role of the samurai class as patrons and producers of the arts. It also examines the legacy of samurai culture which remains a potent source of inspiration in Japan - and the west - today.

This exhibition has been created to support the conference: 400th Anniversary of the Death of the first Tokugawa Shogun: The Life and Legacy of Tokugawa Ieyasu

The creation of the Tokugawa shogunate (1603-1868) was one of the key turning points in Japanese history, and 2016 marks 400 years since the death of its founder, the first shogun, Tokugawa Ieyasu. To mark this important anniversary, this conference will bring together experts on Japanese history, religion, and material culture to commemorate, explain, and explore Ieyasu’s career and legacy.

We are grateful for the support of Durham University's Centre for Visual Arts and Culture in creating this exhibition. Information on other CVAC events.