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SPRINGFIELD Springfield Museums is introducing Washi Transformed: New Expressions in Japanese Paper, a temporary exhibit available to view from June 11 to September 4 in the Michele and Donald D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts. Washi Transformed will be featured in Springfield as part of one of five stops of a national tour organized by Meher Arthur, the art and cultural director of Japan House, Los Angeles.  

This exhibit demonstrates the transformation of a traditional medium into contemporary art. The D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts has an existing collection of Japanese prints, many of which are printed on washi. 

“The abstraction presented in Washi Transformed is a marked contrast to the romantic realism of our collection items,” said Heather Haskell-Burns, Vice President of the Springfield Museums and Director of the Art Museums. “Washi Transformed helps us explore the vitality and evolution of an art lineage deeply rooted in history.” 

Washi Transformed includes works from nine Japanese artists, presenting more than 30 highly textured two-dimensional works, expressive sculptures, and installations that explore this traditional medium — some of which so large that Springfield Museums had to come up with new approaches to installation. 

“The contemporary artists who created these pieces use washi in expressive and innovative ways that will captivate all who experience them,” said Maggie North, curator of art for the Springfield Museums.  “We are overjoyed to share the extraordinary, visionary creations in this exhibition with our visitors.”