The Arte Piazza Museum, located in the small town of Bibai on the island of Hokkaido, the northernmost in Japan, is an open-air art park surrounded by nature. More than 40 marble and bronze sculptures, by the internationally renowned sculptor Kan Yasuda, are placed to blend with the abundant surrounding nature that changes with the seasons to create unique scenery. After enjoying the long stroll through the vast park, take a break at Café Arte with high ceilings and large windows. Heated by a wood stove in winter, it offers moments of tranquillity and harmony with the surrounding works.
Arte Piazza Bibai
The town of Bibai, birthplace of the sculptor Kan Yasuda, was once one of the largest coal centres in Japan, significantly depopulated with the transition to oil as a source of energy. In the 1980s, Yasuda installed his first monumental work Yamanohi, the monument for the mine in memory of the disappeared mining town.
In 1992 Kan Yasuda started the project of the Arte Piazza Bibai sculpture park, renovating part of the school buildings, in which once, at the height of the coal mine activity, the joyful voices of over 1200 children rang out. Arte Piazza Bibai, immersed in a hilly landscape, presents an ideal and new relationship between nature, man, and art in perfect harmony with the atmosphere of the park.
The most striking work is the couple of Tensei / Tenmoku, placed on a clear stream flowing over a bed of white marble pebbles. Two pieces, facing each other, alternating the scenery, and creating a mysterious space and time, a bridge between memories of the past, present and future.
The large art park has seen moments of prosperity and poverty of the coal mining town. Now, Kan Yasuda Sculpture Museum – Arte Piazza Bibai harnesses the energy of people from both past and present ages, preserving its spirit for years to come. All those who live in this modern era can enjoy a wonderful time at the museum, free from concern for the outside world, feeling peace and harmony surrounded by nature and works of art.
Kan Yasuda, Master of wisdom and beauty
Kan Yasuda’s sculptures give people hope, reaching the viewer’s mind and enriching it like the rain refreshes the parched earth. Through the skilful use of white Carrara marble, the sculptor emphasizes the therapeutic power of his sculptures, instilling vitality and evoking the concept of purity. The simplicity of the white marble helps us to express our feelings and arouses profound sensations.