What is UBE Biennale?
Ube City in Yamaguchi Prefecture, is known as a city of greenery, flowers and sculptures.
While Ube was suffering disruption following World War II, the “Greening” and “Bursting with Flowers” campaigns, which aimed to beautify the city and bring hope to the citizens, were developed. During this time, the citizen’s movement “Decorate Ube with Sculpture” campaign, which placed sculptures around the city in an effort to combine humanity and nature, gained momentum.
In 1961 the large scale “Ube City Outdoor Sculpture Exhibition” was held.
Since then, after undergoing a name change, it continued as a biennale, held once every two years. 2011’s 24th Exhibition was the 50th anniversary, and it has now been held a total of 26times. Since entering the 21st century, it became an international exhibition, and now actively seeks entries from overseas.
Currently, UBE Biennale is an international competition, and Japan’s largest outdoor sculpture exhibition. Ube City’s collection of outdoor sculpture works is one of the most outstanding collections in Japan.
One of Japan’s Premier Collections
Ube City has a collection of 400 works, both indoor and outdoor, which were assembled through UBE Biennale (International Sculpture Competition). They are on display in various public spaces, such as the center of the city, in front of train stations, in the city’s main facilities and around the airport, so it is possible to experience a giant art museum spread over the city.
In UBE Biennale’s venue, Tokiwa Park, where many works are gathered together, you can experience half a century of outdoor sculpture history. The enormous collection shows Japanese post-war sculptural history and transition, as well as reflecting the state and ideology of society throughout that period.