Welcome to the World of
Hokusai, an
"Old Man Mad About Painting"!

About HOKUSAI

Who’s the most well-known Japanese outside of Japan? The answer is Hokusai, renowned ukiyo-e master.

In his mid-80s,Katsushika Hokusai(1760-1849)came to Obuse at invitation of Takai Kozan,a wealthy farmer and merchant.During his stay, Hokusai painted several masterpieces including Dragon and Phoenix for the celing of the Higashimachi festival float, Masculine Waves and Feminine Waves for the celing of the Kanmachi festival float, and Phoenix for the celing of the main hall at Gansho-in temple.

Opened in November 1976, the Hokusai Museum invites visitors to appreciate Hokusai’s artistic achievements including the two festival floats as well as paintings, books of woodblock prints, and multi-colored nishiki-e “brocade pictures”.

  • Higashimachi
    Festival Float

    According to the records, this festival float was rebuilt in 1805 and has the longest history among the seven festival floats currently present in Obuse.
    The float was constructed based on the request of Kozan Takai, who received the wish of Obuse villagers at that time, and a part of its ceiling was remodeled to contain paintings of a dragon and a phoenix.
    Higashimachi Float has been designated as an official treasure of Nagano Prefecture
    In 1844, when Hokusai visited Obuse at the age of 85, he spent half a year preparing the dragon and the phoenix paintings on the ceiling of Higashimachi Float. A dragon figure on a flaming scarlet background is contrasted by a phoenix figure on dark indigo background, representing the Chinese concept of Yin and Yang that enhances the decorative effect of the stage.

  • Kanmachi
    Festival Float

    This festival float was created by Kozan with his own money, and the decorative stage features wood carvings of two characters that appear in the novel “Water Margin”, General Gongsun Sheng, a military advisor of the Song Dynasty in China, and a dragon.
    Kanmachi Float has also been designated as an official treasure of Nagano Prefecture
    The two “angry wave” paintings on the ceiling of Kanmachi Float, the “Masculine Wave” and the “Feminine Wave”, as well as the float’s decorations were made by Hokusai for about 3 years from 1845. The colored borders of the angry paintings were painted by Kozan based on the Hokusai’s design.

Information

Obuse Hokusai-kan

485 Obuse, Obuse-machi
Kamitakai-gun, Nagano-ken 381-0201
Tel:026-247-5206
Fax:026-247-6188

CONTACT US

Hours

09:00-17:00
09:00-18:00(July and August)
10:00-15:00(New Year’s Day)
*Last admission: 30 minutes before closing

Closed

December 31 (and temporarily as needed)

Admission

Adults: ¥1,000 / High school age: ¥700 / Junior high school age or younger: free
(Admissions fee may change during special exhibitions.)
*Admission is half-price for disability passbook holders and one accompanying adult.

Parking

A dedicated parking lot is available next to the Hokusai Museum. Heavy vehicles: ¥2,000 / Medium vehicles: ¥1,500

Ordinary vehicles

¥400 (These charges are for parking up to 3 hours; additional charges apply thereafter.)
*If our parking lot is full, please use the Matsumura Town Parking (parking fee required).

Access

By Train

◆ From Tokyo (Narita international Airport & Tokyo (Haneda) international Airport)
Each Airport – Tokyo Station Please search here. From Tokyo station to Nagano station Hokuriku Shinkansen “Asama” “Haku Taka” about 1 hour 10 minutes.Take the Nagano Electric Railway from Zenkojiguchi in front of JR Nagano Station (20 minutes by express, 30 minutes by regular train)⇒Then walk 12 minutes from Obuse Station

◆ From Nagoya (Chubu(centrair) international Airport)
Nagoya Airport ~ Nagoya Station Please search here. About 3 hours from the Nagoya station to the Nagano station by JR Chuo Main Line.Take the Nagano Electric Railway from Zenkojiguchi in front of JR Nagano Station (20 minutes by express, 30 minutes by regular train)⇒Then walk 12 minutes from Obuse Station

◆From Osaka (Kansai international Airport)
Please search here. From Kansai International Airport to Nagano Station.Take the Nagano Electric Railway from Zenkojiguchi in front of JR Nagano Station (20 minutes by express, 30 minutes by regular train)⇒Then walk 12 minutes from Obuse Station

Obuse Hokusai-kan access map

Floor Guide

  • Theater

    ①Theater

    Successive screenings of audiovisual presentations titled Japonism and Katsushika Hokusai and Hokusai in Obuse.

  • Planned Exhibition Room

    ②Planned Exhibition Room

    This gallery is primarily used for special temporary exhibitions.

  • Original Paintings Exhibition RoomOriginal Paintings Exhibition Room

    ③④Original Paintings Exhibition Room

    These Japanese-style exhibition spaces are dedicated to Hokusai’s hand-painted works mounted on hanging scrolls and screens.
    In the course of his 90 years, Hokusai created works in diverse enres including bijinga(paintings of beautiful women), kachoga(paintings of flowers and birds), and fukeiga (landscapes) that attest to his stylistic transitions from youth to maturity and into old age.

  • Festival Floats Exhibition Room

    ⑤Festival Floats Exhibition Room

    This room displays two festival floats (both designated Nagano prefectural treasures) that each incorporate a pair of ceiling paintings by Hokusai. The Higashimachi neighborhood float features Dragon and Phoenix, both painted in 1844 when Hokusai was 85, while the Kanmachi neighborhood float includes Masculine Waves and Feminine Waves, painted in 1845 when he was 86. The Kanmachi float is also decorated with marvelous wooden sculptures of Gongsun Sheng and a winged dragon taken from the classical Chinese novel The Water Margin.

  • Museum Shop

    Museum Shop

    The shop offers a variety of products inspired by the museum’s collection as well as exhibition catalogs and books,
    any of which would make a suitable souvenir of your visit.

  • Lounge

    Lounge

    The lounge on the first floor is equipped with large touch-panel isplays that can be used to search or browse the collection of the Hokusai Museum.
    Vending machines are available, making this a good place to take a break during your visit.

  • locker room

    Locker room

    A coin locker is prepared next to the entrance general reception desk.
    Rental fee is 100 yen, but it returns after use. Please feel free to use.

Click the button on each floor for details.

  • ①Theater
  • ②Planned Exhibition Room
  • ③Original Paintings Exhibition Room 1
    ④Original Paintings Exhibition Room 2
  • ⑤Festival Floats Exhibition Room
  • Museum Shop
  • Lounge
  • Locker room

Click the button on each floor for details.

  • ①Theater
  • ②Planned Exhibition Room
  • ③④Original Paintings
    Exhibition Room
  • ⑤Festival Floats
    Exhibition Room
  • Museum Shop
  • Lounge
  • Locker room
  • Theater

    ①Theater

    Successive screenings of audiovisual presentations titled Japonism and Katsushika Hokusai and Hokusai in Obuse.

  • Planned Exhibition Room

    ②Planned Exhibition Room

    This gallery is primarily used for special temporary exhibitions.

  • Original Paintings ExhibitionRoomOriginal Paintings ExhibitionRoom

    ③④Original Paintings ExhibitionRoom

    These Japanese-style exhibition spaces are dedicated to Hokusai’s hand-painted works mounted on hanging scrolls and screens.
    In the course of his 90 years, Hokusai created works in diverse enres including bijinga(paintings of beautiful women), kachoga(paintings of flowers and birds), and fukeiga (landscapes) that attest to his stylistic transitions from youth to maturity and into old age.

  • Festival Floats Exhibition Room

    ⑤Festival Floats Exhibition Room

    This room displays two festival floats (both designated Nagano prefectural treasures) that each incorporate a pair of ceiling paintings by Hokusai. The Higashimachi neighborhood float features Dragon and Phoenix, both painted in 1844 when Hokusai was 85, while the Kanmachi neighborhood float includes Masculine Waves and Feminine Waves, painted in 1845 when he was 86. The Kanmachi float is also decorated with marvelous wooden sculptures of Gongsun Sheng and a winged dragon taken from the classical Chinese novel The Water Margin.

  • Museum Shop

    Museum Shop

    The shop offers a variety of products inspired by the museum’s collection as well as exhibition catalogs and books,
    any of which would make a suitable souvenir of your visit.

  • Lounge

    Lounge

    The lounge on the first floor is equipped with large touch-panel isplays that can be used to search or browse the collection of the Hokusai Museum.
    Vending machines are available, making this a good place to take a break during your visit.

  • locker room

    Locker room

    A coin locker is prepared next to the entrance general reception desk.
    Rental fee is 100 yen, but it returns after use. Please feel free to use.

Exhibition Area