Trick Art Museums

since December 8


'Trick Art Museums' are commercial facilities1), which include more than ten museums for the 'trick art' (trompe l'oeil) across Japan. Their mission is to make visitors more familiar with art and to ensure their enjoyment. Visitors are allowed and encouraged to take pictures of themselves, friends or family interacting with artworks.

The founder is Kazumune KENJU (剣重和宗, けんじゅうかずむね) (1940-1997)2). This project has been maintained and further developed by SD Corporation (株式会社エス・デー)3), which runs a studio and museums.

1) The museums under SD's direct management are Nasu Trickart Pia (那須とりっくあーとぴあ) and TOKYO TRICK ART MUSEUM (東京トリックアート迷宮館).
2) Kazumune Kenju was killed in an accident on November 1997 while making the 'Cappella Sistina' (システィーナ礼拝堂: see below) in the‘Michelangelo Hall’, which belongs to the Nasu Trickart Pia museum complex.
3) 'SD' means 'Space Design'. The president is Kazumune Kenju's younger brother, Hiroshi SHIMIZU, who has been his greatest support from the beginning of this project.

<August 19, 2012>


Kazumune KENJU and 'Cappella Sistina' painted with the trick art technique

photo Akiyoshi Kitaoka 2012 (August 9)


History of Trick Art Museums

1980 Kazumune KENJU founded 'Atelier Sao' (アトリエ沙桜), which is the predecessor of SD.
1984 Start of making Trick Art Wall Painting
1986 Start of 'Hill of Creation' (創造の丘) on the large wall in Kashiwazaki
1987 SD Corporation was founded.
1988 Start of the parody series of famous paintings
1990 Start of Trick Art 'Museum of Only Walls'
1991 'JAIB' opened in Edogawa-ku, Tokyo --- a brochure (PDF: provided by SD)
1992 'House of Trick Artl' (トリックアートの館) opened in Nasu-town, Tochigi-prefecture. --- a brochure (PDF: provided by SD)
2000 Trick Art 'Capella Sistina' opened in Nasu-town, Tochigi-prefecture.
2011 'TOKYO TRICK ART MUSEUM' opened in Odaiba, Minato-ku, Tokyo.

For details, see SD's page of the painters (制作者紹介のページ).
Akiyoshi KITAOKA (professor) visited S.D in Trickartpia with Seiichi Tsuinashi (research associate) on 9th August, 2012 and talked to the staff.

Kenju was a retired bank employee when he started painting. He had no formal education or training in painting. His early works were reproductions of famous Renaissance works and trompe l'oeils using cast shadows. Later, he started using a linear perspective and other elements.

The fist trick art museum in the world was 'JAIB' museum (1991-1999). It was a museum in which visitors were allowed to take photos of artworks. The motto was "Trick Arts which are completed by visitors' participation or getting-in". 'JAIB' means "Jack-in-the-box" according to Shigeta (1996).# Since JAIB closed in 1999, 'House of Trick Art' has officially been the oldest Trick Art Museum.

Kenju believed that visitors should be given an opportunity to see how painters create their works. He believed it was the way to get useful feedback on how to improve or innovate his art. Following his wish, Nasu Trickart Pia made a studio for painting that is open to the public.



# Shigeta, T. (1996). Mysterious world of trick art: Creation of "amusing and familiar" art. Asahi Bank Soken Report, 6, 48-49. (茂田忠雄 (1996) トリックアートの不思議な世界 “楽しく身近な芸術”の創造 あさひ銀総研レポート, '96・6, 48-49.)

<November 20, 2012>


Words from SD
Since the beginning of the first trick art museum, we have been proposing that it is important for visitors to take photos and have fun.
---> Our project has been developing as an art which is completed by taking photos and visitors' getting-in.

<August 15, 2012>


Mirror room

This idea is the original of SD.

<Seiichi TSUINASHI (對梨誠一)>

<August 9, 2012>


Photo frame

This idea is the original of SD, too. This is not a painting, but only a frame.


Ames Room

<Kosuke Wakabayashi (若林宏輔) and Jasmina Stevanov>

<November 20, 2012>


<Kosuke Wakabayashi (若林宏輔) and Trick Art Fox lady>

<December 8, 2012>


in Uzumasa Trick Art Museum (太秦トリックアート迷宮館: opened in Kyoto in October, 2012) (photo taken November 7, 2012) Our visit


Trick art museum has finally come to Kyoto! (photo taken at Tokiwa stop of Randen railway, on 7th November, 2012)

<November 20, 2012>


A book of collection hasbeen published.

<2015年9月6日>


October 17, 2015 @Nasu-TrickArtpia


Akiyoshi's Illusion pages