Collectors Kimiko and John Powers began buying Japanese artwork in the 1960s. Over the next four decades they amassed 300 objects, building one of the largest and most comprehensive collections of Japanese art outside of Japan. The MFAH presents 85 selections from their holdings in Unrivalled Splendor: The Kimiko and John Powers Collection of Japanese Art. The last exceptional collection of Japanese art in private hands, the Powers Collection is renowned for its extraordinary scale and quality, and the exhibition provides a rare chance to see these remarkable examples in the Houston region.
Unrivalled Splendor showcases some of the earliest known examples of Buddhist art in Japan; narrative scroll paintings; beautiful examples of calligraphy; screens embellished with gold and silver; sketches; sculptures; and objects of lacquer, pearl, and silver. The wide array, from courtly to popular works of art, reveals overlapping themes in Japanese art.
These diverse and important objects tell the fascinating story of Japan's artistic development and its enduring cultural heritage. Accompanying the exhibition is an illustrated catalogue, published by the MFAH and distributed by Yale University Press.