Giving back to society has been an essential part of Suntory’s corporate philosophy since Shinjiro Torii founded the company in 1899. His successor as president of Suntory, Keizo Saji, swiftly recognized, as Japan entered its period of rapid economic growth, the importance of emotional and spiritual riches and thus promoted cultural activities. The Suntory Museum of Art, a product of that thinking, opened in the Marunouchi district of Tokyo in 1961. It moved in 2007 to Tokyo Midtown, in Roppongi, where it continues its vigorous activities today.
The Suntory Museum of Art’s principle is “Art in Life.” Its programs are guided by “Art revisited, beauty revealed,” the museum’s message. It presently holds about six special exhibitions, organized by ten curators, annually. These are highly regarded by the approximately 300,000 visitors they attract each year. The collection, which includes one National Treasure, 15 Important Cultural Properties, and 21 Important Art Objects, now numbers about 3,000 works.
The museum organizes special exhibitions that express “Art in Life.” It seeks to be an “urban living room,” a museum where visitors can encounter stimulating experiences at its exhibitions.