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History & Civilizations

Shimabuku. The 165-metre mermaid and other stories

70 min visit

New National Museum of Monaco - Villa Paloma
19 Feb → 3 Oct 2021
Every day from 10 am to 6 pm

« An exhibition between myth and reality where art balances the relationship that human beings have with their environment »

The mermaid is a legendary creature from medieval Scandinavian folklore. The Danish Hans Christian Andersen's tale published in 1837 and its subsequent adaptation by Disney have largely contributed to the image we have of the mermaid today. However, in this exhibition, it is not this mermaid that is honoured, but a 165-metre creature that originated in a medieval Japanese legend. Born in Kobe, Japan, in 1969, Shimabuku began his work in Monaco in 1998. From the start, he had this idea of mixing Japanese folklore with Monegasque legends. A work that sometimes requires the active participation of the viewer to become a work. Here, the artist asked "different people to make an object related to a mermaid, to develop and enrich its history", he says. Shimabuku's multi-faceted works trace the epic journey of an artist-promoter leaving Japan for Monaco. A medieval Japanese legend whose story is very close to the artist's own. Through performances, land art, music and cuisine, the exhibition takes us across the oceans.


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