Exhibitions Archive

22 September 2012 -
10 February 2013

Mono No Aware

Pronounced 'mO-nO nO a-wa rA'

Objects from Japan’s historical past

We all understand the concept of impermanence and that objects can long outlast the hopes and dreams of their original owners. The Japanese expression mono no aware translates into English as the pathos of things. It expresses the bitter sweet plaintiveness related to the passing of life and time, while acknowledging a spirit imbued in old objects by their users.


To celebrate 60 years of the establishment of Japanese-New Zealand Diplomatic Relations the Museum shows Japanese historical objects from the collection that express the passing of time.