I first went to this museum years ago and always return when I'm in Tokyo if it offers one of its excellent exhibitions. The permanent collection focuses on 19th-century French art, but has many other works, including modern Western-style Japanese. The Impressionist paintings may not be the most famous, but they include all the big names, such as Renoir and Monet.
This small museum stands in a relatively quiet part of Tokyo, just a few minutes walk from the JR Tokyo Station. It has never been mobbed when I've been there, so I have been able to go at my own pace, enjoying each work without being frustrated by too many people in the rooms.
Yesterday, I went to the museum's current exhibition: Caillebotte, Impressionist in Modern Paris.
I'm a big fan of this artist so was delighted to see so many of his paintings for the first time from private collections. The show also features Impressionist paintings that Caillebotte had in his private collection as well as the photographic work of his brother, who spent much time with him. This proved to be yet another top notch exhibition presented by Bridgestone.
The museum's tea room is a delight, bright and airy with a variety of sweets, sandwiches and drinks for sale. It is the perfect place to relax for a bit after viewing the art. On this visit, the waiter presented me with an origami rose. The museum also has a small gift shop that features a nice array of items.
Closed on Mondays, the museum hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. other days except Friday when it is open until 8.
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