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Japanese Ceramics Exhibition | “連” (ren) Forging a Sense of Solidarity

Starting Friday, June 19, Portland Japanese Garden will be offering an exhibition of Japanese ceramics. A stunning display of 35 pieces of Japanese ceramics can be enjoyed in the Pavilion Gallery, capturing everyday objects to sculptural pieces fit for a grand foyer. The exhibition represents a range of aesthetics and artistry, and paints intimate stories of the owners’ connections to the Garden.

The exhibition, called, “連” (ren) – Forging a Sense of Solidarity, was inspired by the deep solidarity and sense of community that the Garden experienced in the past few months. While much of the cultural and art programming has been paused or re-imagined for the foreseeable future, the Garden received an outpouring of support from the community of art collectors and partners who wanted to help to continue to provide a rich cultural experience for visitors. In Japanese, ren (連) means, “to connect,” which was the perfect term to use for this very special exhibition. As Aki Nakanishi, Arlene Schnitzer Curator of Culture, Art, and Education shares, “As a Japanese curator, not only am I reminded of an old Japanese word ren (連) meaning, ‘to connect,’ but I am also astounded and humbled by the diversity and breadth of Japanese ceramics collected by individuals that speaks to the depth of artistic interest in Japanese aesthetics within our local community.”

We are deeply grateful for the generosity of our art community and partners, who made this exhibition a reality and were happy to share their special pieces in hopes of spreading the beauty of Japanese ceramic art.


Exhibition made possible by courtesy of:

  • The Robert and Debb Zagunis Collection
  • Travers and Vasek Polak
  • Chartrand/Grant collection
  • The Janelle and Lee Jimerson Collection
  • The Dorie and Larry Vollum Collection
  • Susan and Greg Fitz-Gerald
  • The Steve Bloom Collection
  • Carole Alexander