History & Study Environment
Kanazawa prospered as a castle town of the Kaga domain, ruled by the Maeda clan. Traditional crafts such as Kaga Yuzen, Kanazawa gold leaf and Kutani-ware, and traditional arts such as Noh theatre and Kaga Manzai have been handed down since those times. The city has been spared from war damage and large natural disasters, meaning several beautiful townscapes from the feudal period still remain today, making Kanazawa a precious place. New cultures and globally renowned architectures such as the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa Station / Motenashi Dome and Kanazawa Umimirai Library, have also been born. And in March 2015 the Hokuriku Shinkansen began operation, connecting Kanazawa to Tokyo by a 2.5 hour train ride. Kanazawa College of Art is a public university located within Kanazawa’s beautiful harmonization of tradition and innovation, established soon after the end of World War Ⅱ in 1946 as a vocational school. Following its establishment, the College has expanded and reorganized many times, engaging in education with rich individuality and academic research in the fields of art, craft and design. We have produced countless talented individuals, who are active not only within Japan but all over the world. We help create the artistic culture of Japan and the development of the Culture City, Kanazawa.
During the feudal period, Kanazawa had a population of 120,000. As appropriate for a castle town, it was
structured with a castle at its center, rows of merchant houses, elegant teahouse districts, shrines and
temples connected to feudal lords and distinguished families, and several rare traditional crafts. Even
today, these are a common sight in the lives of Kanazawa’s residents. By the Meiji and Taisho periods,
many scholars and businessmen appeared, creating the foundation for a new age. For this reason,
Kanazawa acquired tradition naturally, and at the same time receives creative energy for leading edge art
through that tradition.
Kanazawa College of Art is surrounded by these wonderful aspects of Kanazawa. Throughout history, in order to make the Kutani-ware and lacquer ware of this region famous throughout the world, our college and its graduates have been right in the middle of various art scenes unfolding within Japan and around the globe. Last year, the College celebrated its 70th anniversary, and continues to search for fresh artistic ground. Kanazawa can be likened to a microcosm of that. Here, many students of our college become one with the city, expanding their unique activities. In the here and now, we as students of the Kanazawa College of Art are creating new histories of this city.