close close
previous project
previous project
Japan / Tokyo

Simple Forms: Contemplating Beauty

A Franco-Japanese perspective on the universality of simple forms.

After the Centre Pompidou Metz, the exhibition Simple Forms tours to Japan in a new version embracing Oriental culture. The Fondation d’entreprise Hermès is continuing its support for the project, as patron and co-producer of Simple Forms: Contemplating Beauty, in association with the Mori Art Museum, Tokyo.

Fondation d'Entreprise Hermès - Simple Forms: Contemplating Beauty

With its celebration of the moon, its emphasis on primal, minimalist forms and the influence of Zen culture, the exhibition Simple Forms shows clear affinities with the art of Japan and its embrace of universal forms down the ages. Following the success of the exhibition’s initial presentation at the Centre Pompidou Metz, co-produced by the Fondation d’entreprise Hermès, both institutions were keen to continue the venture in partnership with the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo, which will host a new version of the show when it reopens in late April 2015. Simple Forms: contemplating beauty, explores the event’s key themes through the prism of Japanese art.  

Directed by Jean de Loisy, president of the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, and Nanjo Fumio, director of the Mori Art Museum, the new project features iconic expressions of Japanese culture: Enso paintings by Sengai, Raku tea bowls by the master ceramicist Chojiro, and lacquered trays used in the  Shuni-e ritual at the Tōdai-ji temple in Nara. Works by contemporary Japanese artists complete the exhibition of pieces in a broad range of media, celebrating the universality of basic, essential forms.

Reflecting mankind’s ancient fascination for pure form – itself the inspiration for the modern movements in Western art – Simple Forms: Contemplating Beauty comprises nine sections presenting 130 works from around the world, from the 4th millennium BCE to the present. Numerous ancient and modern masterpieces from the major French collections are being seen in Japan for the first time, together with mathematical and mechanical objects, and forms shaped by nature herself.

>> Find out more about Simple Forms at the Centre Pompidou-Metz

next project
next project


Mori Art Museum  

53F Roppongi Hills Mori Tower,

6-10-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku,

Tokyo, Japan 


Curators: Jean de Loisy, president of the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, and Nanjo Fumio, director of the Mori Art Museum

Associated curators : Sandra Adam-Couralet and Tsubaki Reiko