Benesse Art Site Naoshima


Inujima Seirensho Art Museum

Breathing new life into the ruins of a former copper refinery, Inujima Seirensho Art Museum was built around the idea of "using what exists to create what is to be". Exhibited here are works created by Yukinori Yanagi who used Yukio Mishima as a motif, a vocal critique of Japan's modernization, together with the remodeled architecture designed by Hiroshi Sambuichi. By using the existing smokestacks and karami bricks from the refinery as well as solar, geothermal, and other natural energies, the architectural design minimizes the construction's environmental impact. The building also employs a sophisticated water purification system that makes use of the power of plants. The project truly embraces the concept of a recycling-based society through its focus on industrial heritage, architecture, art, and the environment.

Hours & Admission

Closure dates will be changed from December 1, 2020. (see details here)

9:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
(Last admittance: 4:00 p.m.)
Ticket center: 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Tuesdays (March 1 - November 30)
Tuesdays to Thursdays (December 1 - last day of February)
*Open on national holidays but closed the next day.
*Open on Tuesdays when Monday falls on a national holiday but closed on the next day.
Open Days Calendar
*Admission to Inujima "Art House Project" and Inujima Life Garden included.
*free for children 15 and under

*If visiting the museum in a group (10 or more people), Please go to Group Visits.
Inujima Seirensho Art Museum

Heritage of Industrial Modernization

Copper refineries were often constructed on islands to alleviate air pollution in urban areas and in order to facilitate the transport of raw materials. The Inujima refinery, built in 1909 with local capital, was one such refinery. A dramatic fall in copper prices resulted in the refinery to cease its operations, 10 years only after its completion.Today, Inujima displays a unique industrial scenery, composed of the plant site constructed using Karami bricks made from the slag generated as a byproduct of the copper refining process, smokestacks and other elements. The remains of the large-scale refining factory are still in a good condition after nearly 90 years. In 2007, the Inujima refinery was designated as one of Japan’s 33 Industrial Modernization Heritage sites by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, in recognition for the groundbreaking role it played in the industrial development of Japan.

 Heritage of Industrial Modernization

ArtistYukinori Yanagi

An artwork expanding into six separate spaces, combining the process of architectural design with a motif featuring Yukio Mishima, a novelist who was a vocal critic of Japan's modernization. Once a prospering force contributing to the modernization of Japan, today only the vestiges of the Inujima refinery remain. This work questions Japan's modern society and its future orientation.

Artist Yukinori Yanagi

Yukinori Yanagi
Born in Fukuoka, 1959. Received an award in the Aperto of the 45th Venice
Biennale (1993). His works are included in the collections of numerous art galleries and leading museums . Fascinated by the islands of the Seto Inland Sea on the occasion of his solo exhibition at Benesse House in 1992, he worked out a plan for the entire island of Inujima to be developed as an art site in 1995, which culminated in the erection of the Inujima Seirensho Art Museum in 2008 in collaboration with architect Hiroshi Sambuichi. His representative work "The World Flag Ant Farm" was included in the collection of Benesse House Museum in 1992.

Hero Dry Cell ,

ArchitectHiroshi Sambuichi

The architecture of Inujima Seirensho Art Museum makes use of geological features, the legacy of this industrial site as well as natural energy to create a structure changing and growing as an integral part of the natural environment on Inujima.

Architect Hiroshi Sambuichi

Hiroshi Sambuichi
Born in 1968. Graduated from the Department of Architecture, Tokyo University of Science. Founded Sambuichi Hiroshi Artchitects after working f or Shin-ichi Ogawa and Associates. Won the 2003 Shinkenchiku Award (Air House, Hagi), DETAILSpecial Prize 2005 (“Miwagama kiln”, Hagi ), 2010 JIA Grand Prix and 2011 AIJ Architectural Design Prize (both for Inujima Seirensho Art Museum, Okayama) . Representative works include:Running Green Project(Yamaguchi, 2001), Rokko Shidare Observatory(Hyogo, 2010), Mt. Misen Observatory (Hiroshima, 2013), amongst others.

Environmental System

Inujima Seirensho Art Museum creates an environment where nature is the foremost concern, using a sophisticated water purification system that makes use of the filtering proprieties of plants. Among other measures, vegetation was planted that is suited to Inujima, based on the results of an environmental survey.

 Environmental System

Cafe&StoreInujima Ticket Center Store

Store, the Seirensho museum shop, sells original goods using the designs of the artist and architect, related books, stationery, and other goods.

9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
The store is closed when the museum is closed.
Cafe&Store Inujima Ticket Center Store
Tote bag JPY1,048(tax included) 
Tote bag JPY1,048(tax included) 

This original canvas tote bag has a motif based on the smokestack of the Inujima Seirensho Art Museum. Take it with you on a walk around Inujima.

(L)Inujima Seirensho Art Museum Handbook ― Art JPY550(tax included)<br> (R)Inujima Seirensho Art Museum Handbook — Architecture JPY550(tax included)
(L)Inujima Seirensho Art Museum Handbook ― Art JPY550(tax included)
(R)Inujima Seirensho Art Museum Handbook — Architecture JPY550(tax included)

(L)Official guidebook to the architecture of the Inujima Seirensho Art Museum, which proposes a new way of interacting with our environment. (R)Official guidebook that offers commentary on the architecture of Inujima Seirensho Art Museum, which is designed to minimize burden to the environment and to harmonize with its surrounding nature.

Cafe&StoreInujima Ticket Center Cafe

Inujima Ticket Center Cafe provides a space where visitors can spend a relaxing time having a cup of coffee or tea along with something to eat while taking in a panoramic view of the Seto Inland Sea.
The menu was created in collaboration with local people, and uses foodstuffs from Inujima and nearby areas. Visitors can enjoy meals that change with the seasons.

9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. (Last order: 4:30 p.m.)
The cafe is closed when the museum is closed.
Menu for Inujima Ticket Center Cafe
Cafe&Store Inujima Ticket Center Cafe
<em>Tako-meshi (Mixed rice with octopus)</em> JPY1,100(tax included)
Tako-meshi (Mixed rice with octopus) JPY1,100(tax included)

This local dish is said to have its roots in a fisherman’s meal in Setouchi. Based on a recipe created by islanders, it is made with great care, starting with the preparation of the raw octopus.

<em>Zenzai</em> JPY630(tax included)
Zenzai JPY630(tax included)

This is a recreation of the zenzai bean soup eaten as a childhood snack by Inujima islanders. The bean soup contains pumpkin and somen noodles.

Cafe&StoreSeirensho Cafe

The Seirensho Cafe is located inside Seirensho. Like the Inujima Ticket Center Cafe, the menu was created in collaboration with local people, and uses foodstuffs from Inujima and nearby areas. Visitors can enjoy meals that change with the seasons.

※Seirensho Cafe is currently closed.

Cafe&Store Seirensho Cafe

Group Visits (10 people and more)

Group visits to Inujima Seirensho Art Museum must be booked in advance. This enables us to schedule groups throughout the day to avoid overcrowding.

Please provide us the details of your group by reservation form.
327-4 Inujima, Higashi-ku, Okayama 7048153, Japan
Tel. +81-(0)86-947-1112
Fax. +81-(0)86-947-1115
Inquiry form


Facilities and Services

For visitors with babies or small children
  • ・Within the Seirensho there are areas in which the remains of old structures and natural features are left just as they are, making it difficult to wheel a baby carriage. We recommend that you do not attempt to take a baby carriage onto the site.
  • ・Baby carriages can be left at the Inujima Ticket Center reception desk during your visit.
  • ・Please note that there is no nursing room in the museum.
  • ・There is one restroom with a changing table in the Inujima Ticket Center.
For handicapped visitors

Due to characteristics of facility, some places are not accessible for visitors with disabilities and special needs.
We ask for your understanding.
We will support you as much as possible when you visit us, so please contact and discuss directly with our facilities.

(2)About lending wheelchairs, etc.
・Wheelchairs: We have 2 wheelchairs available at Inujima Ticket Center.
・Writing tools: Available.
・Multi-purpose toilets: Available.
・You may enter our facilities with a service dog, a seeing eye dog, and/or a hearing assistance dog.

About admission
  • ・Admission to Inujima "Art House Project" and Inujima Life Garden included.
  • ・No discounts are offered for groups and holders of Disability Certificates (Physical Disability Certificates, Rehabilitation Certificates, or Mental Disability Certificates) are not granted free entry.
  • ・We accept the following credit cards: AMEX, Diners, JCB, Master Card, NICOS, VISA

Requests to visitors

When visiting the museum
  • ・Parking spaces are limited. Please use public transport if at all possible.
  • ・Seirensho is located in a former industrial site and there are areas in which the remains of old structures and natural features are left just as they are. Benesse Art Site Naoshima has made every reasonable effort to make Seirensho itself safe, however visitors enter Seirensho at their own risk. We will not bear any responsibility for accidents or injuries occurring in the Seirensho.
  • ・Children up to 15 years old must be accompanied.
  • ・Under no circumstances may a visitor enter areas that are fenced off or areas marked "Prohibited". These areas have not been prepared for visitors. It is possible that structures might collapse or cave-ins occur in marked off areas.
  • ・Please do not bring large objects (suitcases, umbrellas, tripods, etc.) into the museum. These should be placed in coin lockers or left at the Inujima Ticket Center.
  • ・Pets may not be taken into the museum.
  • ・Visitors may not enter the Seirensho wearing bathing suits.
  • ・Smoking is prohibited on the museum premises.
  • ・The use of cell phones is prohibited on the museum premises.
  • ・Other than in the cafe, visitors may not eat (including candy, gum, boxed lunches, etc.) or drink on the museum premises.
  • Visitors may be refused entry if they appear intoxicated or otherwise pose a disturbance to other visitors.
  • ・Please take any garbage away with you.
When viewing the artworks
  • ・Please do not touch the walls, the glass, or the artworks themselves.
  • ・Please do not take photographs, videos, or make sketches in the museum. Visitors are also requested not to use fountain pens, ink, etc.
About using drone
  • ・It's strictly prohibited to operate Unmanned Aircrafts (UAs) /Drone in Benesse Art Site Naoshima premises without our prior permission due to safety assurance reasons for the people, architecture and artworks.


327-4 Inujima, Higashi-ku, Okayama 7048153, Japan
Tel. +81-(0)86-947-1112
Fax. +81-(0)86-947-1115
Inquiry form