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Pre-BIWAKO BIENNALE 2022 in Kyoto’s Nijo-jo Castle. Exceptional late-night opening on October 1st.

In collaboration with Nuit Blanche KYOTO, BIWAKO BIENNALE is organizing a pre-exhibition to the main event. Nuit Blanche is a yearly contemporary art event held in Paris, France, which has been imported to its sister city Kyoto. On October 1st, the exhibition will exceptionally be open until 21:00. This is a great opportunity to enjoy art on a long autumn evening !
The four participating artists will also exhibit their work in Omihachiman and Hikone venues for the main event starting on October 8.

Event outline


2022/09/17~2022/10/02 10:00~17:00
Special late night opening on 10/01 (Sat) 18:00~21:00 (Last admission : 20:30)


Nijo-jo Castle – Ninomaru-goten Palace Daidokoro and Okiyodokoro

541 Nijojocho, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto, 604-8301

Access to the castle

Admission fee

The exhibition is free, however the regular fee to access the castle applies


BIWAKO BIENNALE Executive Committee ; Japan Arts Council ; The Agency for Cultural Affairs

Executive Committee Chairman

KONISHI Osamu (Omihachiman City Mayor)

General Director


Egashira Makoto, Pre-BWAKO BIENNALE 2020
Noda Takuma, Pre-BIWAKO BIENNALE 2020

About Nuit Blanche KYOTO

Nuit Blanche KYOTO is a contemporary art festival, held every fall by Kyoto City and the Institut Français du Kansai. It was inspired by Nuit Blanche in Paris, Kyoto’s sister city, and symbolizes the friendship between the two cities. During one night, visitors can enjoy contemporary art free of charge throughout Kyoto City. Look out for the program in collaboration with French museums and cultural institutions !

About the venue

The exhibition is set in the Nijo-jo Castle Ninomaru Goten Palace’s kitchen, Daidokoro and Okiyodokoro. This area of the Ninomaru Palace is characterized by its large earthen floor and a wooden floorboard room. There used to be a cooking stove and a sink in a corner of the earthen floor, but nowadays, only the smoke vent remains on the roof. The kitchen is one of the largest in the area, including those of temples, and the earthen floor and wooden floor combined are the largest interior space in the area. The four-tatami mat-sized sunken hearth is used to heat and prepare food, and traces of cooking can still be found. Nijo-jo Castle is the only castle in Japan that still has both a kitchen and a kitchenette.

Ninomaru-goten Palace Kitchen (Daidokoro and Okiyodokoro)
Ninomaru-goten Palace, Okiyodokoro
Ninomaru-goten Palace, Daidokoro

The artists

Nishijima Yuji, Shiomi Ryosuke, Kyuta Manami, Ikehara Yuta

Nishijima Yuji

I am interested in the existence of people and the signs of their presence. I try to sense what fills the space and to give it shape, to then reconstruct the space. I want to stabilize that space with a shape that can be perceived visually and through light. When I am conscious of “existence,” I feel that the “presence” I perceive around me is more real than matter itself. When expressing this “presence” in a sculpture, I wonder to what extent I should give it shape, and to what extent I should lose its shape. It is a conflict between sense and matter – and through this process, the shape is brought into existence. Fragments float in the space, and the shapes that emerge in the light begin to “exist” as a “presence”.

Shiomi Ryosuke

My work is an expression of my longing for strength and a desire for a certain kind of transformation, a pretense that emerges between reality and desire. Masks and armor are the outer shells that enclose and embody these pretenses, and at the same time, they are images of the forms that have been transformed and empowered by wearing them. The strong material that is metal is hammered thousands of times with a strong tool called an iron hammer, to transfer and knead the image, layer by layer. Borrowing the strength of strong objects and their strong presence, I beat up the armor, as if this strength exists inside of me. All the while, hoping to become strong myself.

Kyuta Manami

Temple colorist and contemporary artist.

Ikehara Yuta

In my artwork, I focus on the theme of rebirth. I depict a world in which animals and plants of the natural world are intermingled with noise and artifacts that symbolize human society. By collaging watercolor paintings, photographs, and textures, I express the way in which all things become one and circulate in a great current.


*The images displayed above are past works

Coronavirus Prevention

In order to prevent the spread of Coronavirus, the Nijo-jo Castle has adopted the following measures

  • Limited number of visitors
  • Temperature check (visitors with a body temperature over 37.5°C will be denied admission)
  • Mandatory use of masks
  • Hand sanitizer available at the entrance of the venue
  • Registration to the Kyoto City Coronavirus tracking service

* Event programs and schedules might be adapted or canceled according to Coronavirus spread prevention regulations