11 October 2012 - 26 May 2013
The Samurai exhibition transports the visitor to feudal Japan where warlords, the Daimy, fought each other by employing the services of fearsome samurai warriors.
Impressive armour, spectacular helmets and swords that were deemed to be the "soul of the samurai" illustrate the highly developed warrior culture. War banners, nobori, of the Kitamura collection which are painted with family coats of arms and protective mythological figures, identified the samurai on the battlefield.
The code of ethics, Bushid, imposed a lifestyle of honour, loyalty and respect within the warrior class. The samurai elite devoted themselves with equal dedication to various arts: calligraphy and the tea ceremony and they wore delicately crafted netsuke and Inr lacquerwork. The mystical N theatre, the official form of theatre among the samurai, uses animated masks to depict legendary warriors who came back from the dead to the battlefield. A surprising element is the Dutch influence on the samurai warrior equipment, caused by the special bond between the two countries.
On the occasion of the Samurai exhibition, a substantial, richly-illustrated catalogue has been edited by curator Bas Verberk with a contribution by Dr. W. van Gulik. This catalogue is available in the museum shop and via www.wereldmuseumwinkel.nl