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This Hayao Miyazaki exhibition explores how the Ghibli Museum was created

Ghibli Museum
Photo: Cowardlion/Dreamstime One of the permanent exhibits at Ghibli Museum

Ghibli Museum is perhaps one of the hardest museums in Tokyo to get into: it is wildly popular, but mostly because tickets are often sold out as soon as they go on sale. A new exhibition titled ‘Sketch, Flash, Spark! – From the Ghibli Forest Sketchbook’, which runs from November 16 2019 until May 2021, will look into the founding of the museum. Fans can now explore how this iconic museum was planned, designed and eventually built. 

Photo: ©Studio Ghibli ©Museo d'Arte Ghibli

The exhibition is based around concept illustrations, sketches and notes fundamental to the museum’s creative planning process, all taken from a notebook that belonged to none other than Studio Ghibli’s co-founder and most famous director, Hayao Miyazaki. You’ll also get to compare the museum’s conceptual image boards with a detailed scale model of the completed building to spot any details that have changed in the execution.

On top of that, ‘Sketch, Flash, Spark! – From the Ghibli Forest Sketchbook’ also provides rare insights into the facility’s first special exhibition that was based on the studio’s Oscar-winning animation film ‘Spirited Away’. While working on the movie – it was released a few months prior to the museum’s opening in October 2001 – Miyazaki was also directly involved in the exhibition’s creative process.

Note that tickets for the Ghibli Museum can only be purchased prior to your visit via the Lawson ticketing service. Tickets for the following month go on sale on the 10th of the previous month.

Check out our guide to Tokyo’s anime and manga culture, or explore the best art museums in the metropolis.

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