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6 Must-Visit Art Museums and Modern Art Galleries in Nagoya

Nagoya not only houses ancient and historical art but also fantastic museums and galleries exhibiting old and new artworks by Japanese designers.

Even during a short stroll around the city center, you can drop in at multiple museums dedicated to modern art.

To make it easier for you, we have prepared this list of the best art museums and modern art galleries in Nagoya.

Nagoya City Art Museum

Nagoya City Art Museum
Entrance of the Nagoya City Art Museum

Located in between the bustling areas of Fushimi and Sakae, this art museum is a cultural gem that showcases an impressive collection of contemporary and modern art. Nagoya City Art Museum has been collecting and exhibiting the works of local and foreign artists. 

Designed by the renowned architect Kisho Kurokawa, the museum’s distinctive architectural features make it a prominent landmark in the city. The museum’s permanent collection includes works by both Japanese and international artists, spanning various mediums such as painting, sculpture, and photography.

With its commitment to promoting artistic expression and cultural exchange, the Nagoya City Art Museum frequently hosts temporary exhibitions, educational programs, and events that engage the community and attract art enthusiasts.

Nagoya City Art Museum (名古屋市美術館)
Entry Fee: Adult 300 yen, children free
Opening Hours: 9:30 – 17:00; closed Mondays
Address: 2−17−25, Sakae, Naka Ward, Nagoya, Aichi 460-0008
Phone: (+81) 052-212-0001
Website | Google Maps

Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art

Entrance to the Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art

The Aichi Prefectural Museum has collected more than 8,000 works, focusing on 20th-century art from Japan and abroad, featuring artists such as Gustav Klimt, Pablo Picasso, Pierre Bonnard, Max Ernst, and Taikan Yokoyama. Additionally, the museum boasts a comprehensive collection of German expressionism and surrealism works, as well as postwar art from the United States.

The special collection donated by Nagoya art collector Teizo Kimura comprises more than 3,000 works, including modern Japanese-style paintings, chinaware, and Buddhist images. These pieces are showcased in the Teizo Kimura Collection Room and select special exhibitions.

You can enjoy some of the art collections of the Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art on the virtual museum page here.

Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art (愛知県美術館)
Entry Fee: Adult 500 yen, child 300 yen. Admission fees for special exhibitions vary.
Opening Hours: 10:00 – 18:00; closed Mondays
Address: 1-13-2 Higashisakura, Higashi Ward, Nagoya, Aichi 461-8525
Phone: (+81) 052-971-5511
Website | Google Maps

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Furukawa Art Museum/Annex Tamesaburo Memorial Museum

Furukawa Art Museum
Entrance of the Furukawa Art Museum

The Furukawa Art Museum exhibits very fine pieces of contemporary Japanese paintings. It also displays oil paintings, ceramics, and crafts.

Just a 3-minute walk from the museum, you can find a nicely styled traditional Japanese tea house that was the residence of the founder of the museum, Tamesaburo Furukawa.

Tamesaburo Memorial Museum
View from the Japanese garden of the Tamesaburo Memorial Museum

Once you pay the admission fee, you can freely walk around the tea house and choose the tea room you want to stay in.

The Tamesaburo Memorial Museum is a wonderful place to sit down and enjoy a cup of Matcha green tea along with a Japanese sweet while relishing the view of a Japanese garden. The tea bowls are part of an impressive collection, so feel free to ask the staff about the story behind your chosen bowl.

After your relaxing tea break, consider taking a leisurely stroll around the Japanese garden.

Furukawa Art Museum/Annex Tamesaburo Memorial Museum (古川美術館・分館 爲三郎記念館)
Entry Fee: Adults 1,000 yen, university students 600 yen, children free
Opening Hours: 10:00 – 17:00; closed Mondays
Address:  2-50 Ikeshitacho, Chikusa Ward, Nagoya, Aichi 464-0066
Phone: (+81) 052-763-1991
Website (Japanese only) | Google Maps

If you are interested in the Japanese tea ceremony this post will introduce you to tea ceremonies and other beautiful tea houses in Nagoya, where you can experience the Japanese tradition for yourself.

The Yamazaki Mazak Museum of Art

The Yamazaki Mazak Museum of Art
The collection exhibited at the Yamazaki Mazak Museum of Art

The Yamazaki Mazak Museum of Art boasts a captivating collection primarily centered on artworks by French artists spanning the 18th to the 20th century. The museum showcases pieces representing a diverse range of art movements, including Rococo, Romanticism, Neoclassicism, Realism, and Impressionism. Beyond paintings, the museum houses notable collections of glass crafts and furniture.

To enhance visitors’ experiences, the museum offers complimentary audio guidance, providing deeper insights into the individual stories and historical contexts of each artwork.

Conveniently located, visitors can access the museum directly from the Shinsakae-machi subway station, providing shelter from inclement weather. This cultural gem invites art enthusiasts to immerse themselves in the beauty and history of French art across centuries.

The Yamazaki Mazak Museum of Art (ヤマザキマザック美術館)
Entry Fee: Adult 1,000 yen, child 500 yen
Opening Hours: 10:00 – 17:00; closed Mondays
Address: 1-19-30 Aoi, Higashi Ward, Nagoya, Aichi 461-0004
Phone: (+81) 052-937-3737
Website | Google Maps

IdcN International Design Center Design

International Design Center Design
Nadya Park Building, where the IdcN International Design Center is located

The International Design Center Design, situated within the Nadya Park Building, stands as a hub of creativity and innovation in Nagoya. Dedicated to fostering excellence in design, the center serves as a dynamic space where professionals, enthusiasts, and the design community converge.

It hosts small temporary exhibits displaying new designers’ creations and new design products by companies. Take a look at the creators’ shop Loop, a small design shop where new and young designers are selling their works.

IdcN International Design Center Nagoya (国際デザインセンター)
Entry Fee: Varies depending on the exhibition
Opening Hours: 10:00 – 20:00
Address: 3−18−1 Design Center Building, Sakae, Naka Ward, Nagoya, Aichi 460-0008
Phone: (+81) 052-265-2128
Website | Google Maps

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Esplanade Gallery

Esplanade Gallery
Esplanade Gallery, during the summer 2020 exhibition

Located on the historical Endoji Shopping Street, the Esplanade Gallery was the former residence of a merchant family. The remodeling preserved the original exterior while transforming the interior into a modern gallery space.

This small gallery displays different kinds of exhibitions from local designer’s masterpieces to private collections. This project, fostering art-related activities, contributes to the revitalization of Shikemichi and Nagoya at large.

Esplanade Gallery (エスプラナードギャラリー)
Entry Fee: free
Opening Hours: 13:00 – 18:00; Saturdays and Sundays 12:00 – 18:00
Address: 1-34-1 Nagono, Nishi Ward, Nagoya, Aichi 451-0042
Phone: (+81) 052-870-0827
Website (Japanese only) | Google Maps

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Bonus: The Aichi Triennale Art Festival, an exhibition of controversy and creativity

Aichi Triennale
During the Aichi Triennale 2019

The Aichi Triennale is one of the largest international art festivals in Japan held in and around Nagoya. The first festival was held in 2010, and since then it has been held every three years.

The latest edition, Aichi Triennale 2022, unfolded from July 30th to October 10th. Centered around the theme “STILL ALIVE,” the festival probed into questions concerning the fundamental essence of life and the resilience of art and art festivals in contemporary times.

Curators and curatorial advisors from around the world engaged with this theme, resulting in the selection of 100 artists or artist groups who offered diverse perspectives on these inquiries. The artworks were viewed by more than 480,000 festival visitors, despite the challenges posed by the pandemic.

Nagoya City Art Museum
“Vocabulary of solitude” by Ugo Rondinone, a sculpture exhibition held in the Aichi Triennale 2019

The previous edition of the festival in 2019 also featured several works that brought controversy to the festival, which ended with the cancellation of the exhibition of the work. Take a look at the Aichi Triennale 2019 here.

The next festival will be held in 2025. Read more about it here.

If you love visiting museums, take a look at these two posts on industry as well as history museums in Nagoya:

9 Must-Visit Industry and Technology-related Museums in Nagoya

12 Must-Visit History and Culture-related Museums in Nagoya

This post was last updated in November 2023
Although we strive to provide you with the most accurate and up-to-date information possible, please note that changes may occur nonetheless. We recommend you confirm any relevant information such as event cancelations or changes, opening hours, or possible restrictions using a direct source. Please keep in mind that these sources might be in Japanese only.


Did you enjoy this article?

Which museum or art gallery on the list is your favorite?? Let us know in the comments below!

Make sure to also check out our other posts about Nagoya and trust us if we say Nagoya is not boring! 

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About the author

Sumo, Sake, and Japan Crafts Expert in JapanImmerse yourself in the heart of Japanese culture with me, I am, a Spanish entrepreneur living over 16 years in Japan. My extensive experience has made me not just a guide, but a cultural bridge, connecting travelers to the authentic spirit of Japan.From the electrifying arenas of sumo wrestling to the delicate world of sake brewing and the timeless elegance of Japanese crafts, my journey is a tapestry of rich cultural encounters. I am passionate about sharing these unique experiences, offering a glimpse into Japan's soul through its traditions and hidden gems.Join me, and together let's explore the depth and beauty of Japan. Whether you're a sumo enthusiast, a sake aficionado, or a lover of artisanal crafts, I am here to guide you through an unforgettable cultural adventure.Discover the Essence of Japan with me.

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