Washi 和紙

Washi is Japanese handmade paper, steeped in tradition that dates back more than a thousand years and the foundation for a myriad of Japanese cultural arts. In artwork, washi traditionally is used in the making of mokuhanga or woodblock prints where there is an integral relationship between the paper and the artist’s expression.

Taking washi and mokuhanga as a starting point, this exhibit showcases the work of Canadian artists Naoko Matsubara and Alexa Hatanaka. Although from different generations, the trajectories of both artists include being of Japanese ancestry, working with the Inuit artist community in the North, and exploring the merging of cross-cultural techniques of Western and Eastern influences in their artmaking. Driven by curiosity, spontaneity, and supportive relations that mold their creative journey, the diversity of each artist’s oeuvre is fascinating to explore.

This exhibit includes a heritage corner drawn from the Nikkei National Museum's archives.

We are grateful to launch this exhibit in cooperation with the Canadian Society for Asian Arts and with the support of the BC Arts Council and the Deux Mille Foundation.

Available for viewing in our Karasawa Gallery from July 16, 2022 to February 25, 2023.

Gallery Hours

July 16, 2022 - Feb 25, 2023
Tues-Sat, 10am-5pm.
Gallery Admission $5 | Concession $4
Free for NNMCC members, students, and volunteers

Exhibit Video


Download the e-catalogue for our exhibit below.


In Praise of Hands, Wood Cuts by Naoko Matsubara with poems by Penny Boxall

Limited copies of In Praise of Hands is available in the museum shop, and online.

Published by Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford in 2020.

Public Programs


ふれいざー 松原直子インタビュー

Fraser Magazine article translated from Japanese by Naoko Matsubara and Dr. Arlene Gehmacher.

Download the article