Chairman of Board of Directors' message

For a healthy society to endure over the long term, society as a whole, or at least its more forward-looking elements, must remain fresh and open, with the flexibility to incorporate new and exciting things. It is important to proceed without being weighed down by accumulations of the past, but that does not mean that old practices or things should be discarded or disregarded. On the contrary, as an index for understanding, we must maintain and carefully tend our grasp of the changes that led from past to present, and of the position the current moment occupies within the great flow of human history.

Art has played and will continue to play a crucial role in sustaining freshness and innovation in society, and fine art in particular gives concrete expression to new images of the world. Fine art manifests the wishes, thoughts and dreams of the world of the spirit, uplifting and stirring the emotions of viewers. It exposes various emotions concealed in the world around us and renders audible the cries of souls trapped within individual beings. Fine art will continue to play this role in the future, and society has vested great hopes and expectations in its doing so. By defying consensus and convention, fine art has the power to foretell coming eras, and unleash the surging but all-too-often suppressed emotions of individuals through the power of expression. Fine art is an engine of expansion that propels human potential and elevates humanity.

Meanwhile, design draws our attention to happiness, gentleness, novelty, comfort, and practicality in our everyday surroundings that have gone unnoticed or been forgotten. At times it convinces us of the rightness of something seemingly incongruous, while also reminding us of the joy and value of living, offering us hope and courage. Humanity has advanced as our tools have developed, and through design humanity becomes ever more human, achieving growth and fulfillment. In that sense, design is like fresh water that permeates every corner of a dehydrated body. Design will play a fundamental role in building the future, not only by reintroducing moisture to a sometimes arid society where human bonds and compassion have been weakened and both emotion and reason neglected, but also through application of the methods of exploration and processes of creation that design has accumulated over time.

At Tama Art University, we not only believe that fine art and design are poised to play a greater role than ever in creating and sustaining a fresh and harmonious society, but we also aspire to contribute to the realization of a society in which fine art and design are respected more than ever. To that end, we are pursuing the seamless melding of fine art and design into one grand domain, as we strive to adapt to the coming seamless society of the future.

AOYAGI Masanori
Chairman of Board of Directors