Thursday, June 25, 2015

Hakone Open Air Museum

I'm so grateful a girlfriend messaged me Monday and said, "Hey, do you want to go with us..."  What an awesome day at the Hakone Open Air Museum!!!, maybe the day didn't quite start out right.  I decided to take the longer train ride (by only a few minutes) but the shorter walk.  Instead of walking all the way to Yokosuka Station, we decided to have Daddy drive us to Daiei gate and we walked across the street to Shioiri Station.  From here we were supposed to ride to Kanazawa Hakkei then switch trains and head to Jinmuji Station.  Well, what had happened was....<sigh> I got confused!  I really should have got up earlier and had that extra cup of coffee!  We made it to the right platform, I just got on the train that was one minute too early.  So, we ended up going all the way back to where we started.  Ugh!  When we made it back to Kanazawa Hakkei (yes, children, we have seen this train station already today.  Yes, children, I went the wrong way.) the second time I asked someone just to be sure.  This time we were going the right direction.  Only about 40 minutes late.  Gah!  I can't stand being late., lateness behind us...we hopped on the ~twisty~ road and made our way to Hakone.  I think the drive was about an hour and a half.  And, there was only one toll, 260 Yen that you toss into a bucket.

There was plenty of parking, not many spaces were even filled (500 yen for the first 5 hours, 1000 yen after that).  We all made our way to the ticket counter and went on in.  1600 Yen for adults, 800 Yen for elementary age kids.  And, here begins our adventure at the Open Air Museum (or, as Mackenzie called it, "The Inappropriate Museum")

Down some stairs and through a tunnel...a museum that is outside!  Genius!

Our first stop was "Zig Zag World"

"A geometric space where the principles of nature are present....the elements within the natural world have been rendered in a geometrical fashion..."

I thought I'd see how artsy my little artist could be, so I asked:  Mackenzie, what do you think the poles represent?  
Her answer:  I think they are trees.  And that red thing over there is a mountain.  Then, Raelyn and I want to make a house with the little pieces.  

After some tough work convincing the kids to leave this awesome area, we made it back outside and started our tour of the grounds.  

The kids blew right past this structure and on to the mysterious doors that led into the ground....much more interesting for kids.

In she goes...

Down the steps...

Through something that looked like intestines...

And, back out into a glass structure... was kind of like being digested.

"Surprise with the Glare" ~ Takao Tsuchida 1990 (left)
"Sound of Wind" ~ Takao Tsuchida 1989 (right)

This is the back side of the museum.  The glass area on the right is the entryway.  Inside were the special displays.  We weren't allowed to take pictures inside, but there were tons of whirligigs ("Sound Forest" ~ bamboo, paper, nylon trying, pine needles) and bells and chimes ("Sound Garden" ~ bamboo, sand, sound, paper ~ a wind instrument concert) and water, sand, and fans ("Sound Theater" ~ bamboo, motors, paper, water, sand pine needles, sound ~ a shadowgraph sound installation)...all seemed to be set to timers and played music, moved up and down, turned around in a circle.  It was beautiful!

After the kids flew past the warrior-looking statues we found a foot path and followed the steps.

At the bottom of the stairs....the Diamond Structure ~ Peter Jon Pearce 2011, polycarbonate and stainless steel

The kids ran through this space at an alarming speed!  They squealed, got lost, found each other again, got pretty sweaty, and then collapsed in one bubble.

Pay no attention to the age limit sign above my head...

At this point I got behind everyone else, and then took a wrong turn and got lost!  I know, shocking!  While I was wandering in this quiet area, the kids were at the pond feeding the fish.

Also in the water was this structure.  "Floating Structure 3" ~ Marta Pan 1963

I was trying to figure out exactly what it was when Stephanie said, If you look from here you can see the fish.

How about that!  I probably never would have seen that...I would have just walked on and not looked back. 

 A few creatures to look at.

I was trying to find the other balls that this huge guy would bang into and wondered how in the world they pulled the first one back to bang the others.  

I agree with Daniel, "Creepy".  "Rupture" ~ Atsushi Imoto 1969

We couldn't walk around on the grass, so we had to look from afar.  It didn't matter too much, the kids were running off on the hunt for the net area.

"Intersecting Space Construction"  The red are women and the black are men.

Lunch time!  After the kids jumped around on the eggs for a bit, we sat and ate our lunch.

Boxing Bunnies and Boxing Children

That Jenga looking space in the back is the awesomeness I will show you in a minute... the front of the picture is the Garden of Stars.  It's a little labyrinth that you can get lost in.

Into the Jenga house we go...

Also known as "Woods of Net" 

The net area!!!  The kids took off!!!

Complete and total awesomefuncrazychildren area!  The kids found a hole, climbed in and headed into the center of the nets.  Garytt had problems finding his way out.  I would hear, "Dead End!" and then he would change direction.  I really wanted to get in there, but there was an age limit...and cameras.  Darn.  

I sent my little camera in with Mackenzie to take pictures inside the nets.  It looks like a picture from a Dr. Suess book.  Maybe Oh, the Places You'll Go.

Next up:  The Star Garden.  The kids played here for a bit, then it started raining on us.  So, we headed back to the Jenga house and played until the rain settled down a bit before making a jog for the indoor Picasso exhibit.

No pictures were allowed inside this exhibit.  Wow...there is a ton of stuff in there.  It seems to me that when he died, or when his wife died, someone went in and picked up every single piece of scrap, scribble, and splash they could find.

On our way to the foot bath we found they "Symphonic Structure".  Amazing glasswork!  I'll spare you the thousand pictures I took in here.  It was one of those pieces where you see something new from every different direction.  

The view from the top of the windy stairs.  It would have been peaceful if I couldn't hear the kids through the sound amplifying tube saying, from the bottom, "Where ARE they?"  "What is taking them SO LONG?"

The foot bath

A look down from the top

The foot bath was fun!  It was 65 degrees.  You walk up, take off your shoes, and dunk your feet in.  When you're done, you can pay 100 yen for a towel to dry your feet.

The oranges floated around in there gave it a nice aroma. 

One of the favorites of the day...well, one of the non-interactive favorites of the day. 

They told me to be quiet because they were attending a wedding.

Strange lady

What would a post in the summer be without pictures of ajisai (hydrangea)?

"Mother and Child"

"Hand of God"

The kids played rock, paper, scissors with this one....I think he may have won.

One last stop in the Zig Zag World before a trip to the gift shop and then home we went!

What an awesome museum!!  It's been on my list to visit for a while and it was more fun than I imagined.  The weather was nice for the most part.  A little rain while we played under cover didn't mess up that day.  My kids looked at some beautiful pieces and interacted with some as well.   One more reason to love Hakone!  Also, it's been added to the list of things we want to show family when they visit..."The Unappropriate Museum" ~ Garytt

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