Samurai. Myths, cult and culture.

In 2022, the cultural program of the former Prémontrés Abbey celebrates Japan with an exhibition dedicated to samurais and their way of life. The traditional warriors’ equipment (kabuto, katana, tachi, tusba, menpo…), along with sculptures, lacquered objects, prints, kakemonos, ceramics, are all evocative of the philosophic ways that structure the Japanese civilization.

Japan is the guest star at the Prémontrés Abbey with an exhibition dedicated to samurais from May 21st to October 16th 2022. These eminent members of the warrior caste that has led the country for about 700 years until 1877 have always been always a source of fascination.  Alongside the exhibition, an exceptional program of activities is offered inside the monument as well as “beyond the walls”. Come and discover the heart of Japanese culture with a great number of meetings open to all, around calligraphy, ikebana, raku, martial arts, without forgetting manga, video games and contemporary Japanese cinema.


Through about 250 exceptional pieces going from the Kamakura era (1185 – 1333) to the advent of the Meiji era (1868), the “Samurai. Myths, cult and culture” exhibition will lead you to discover the origins of samurais and the evolution of their condition throughout Japanese history. An extremely rich panorama of works linked to traditional equipment, spirituality and the practice of the arts will lead you on the path of these samurais, ranging from accomplished warriors on the battlefield to intellectual elites at the beginning of the 17th century up until their disappearance in 1877.



From traditional equipment...

Sumptuous armours once owned by high dignitaries of the warrior caste dating back from the beginning of the Azuchi-Momoya era (1573 – 1603) and the Edo era (1603 – 1868) reveal all the pomp of the daimyo, the provincial governors and their generals. Many kawari kabuto - helmets with spectacular and surprising forms - as well as the care put into the beautiful lacquered armours presented in this exhibition illustrate the prestige of these war lords. Subtly inscribed with references to Kamis (Shinto deities) and representations of the Buddhist pantheon, they reveal, along with the exhibited sculptures and prints, the spiritual infusion of those warriors driven by the seven Bushidô virtues (honesty, courage, goodness, sincerity, honor and loyalty).


... To the way of the arts.

At the end of the 16th century and of the Sengoku era, samurais truly became an intellectual elite devoted to the arts. Nourished with spirituality and aestheticism, they searched in the ways of calligraphy (shodô), tea (chadô), incense (kadô) and many more, the harmony of their body and mind. From representations of Nô theater to a range of ceramics (teapot, kettles, jars and famous raku bowls), you will discover the multiple philosophic ways that structure Japanese civilization and this fascinating art.


//Organization: Prémontrés Abbey cultural centre in partnership with Japanart//

Around the exhibition

At the Abbey

  • Conference « A taste of the Far East » (May 31st - 2:30 P.M.) > Read more +
  • Ikebana : presentation & demontration (June 4th - 6 P.M.) > Read more +
  • Introduction workshop to calligraphy (September 24th - 10 A.M.) > Read more +
  • Introduction workshop to sumie (September 24th - 1:30 P.M.) > Read more +
  • Introduction workshop to lino cutting (June 15th and 22nd - 2 P.M.) > Read more +
  • Apero-expo « Samourai. Myths, cult and culture » (June 17th - 6:30 P.M.) > Read more +
  • "A botanical walk in Japan" with Nicolas Perquin (June 19th - 4 P.M.) > Read more +
  • Martial arts : demonstration and introduction (June 26th - 3 P.M.) > Read more +
  • Introduction workshop to origami for children and adults (July 2nd) > Read more +
  • "Let's play in Japan" activities (July and August) > Read more +
  • One day to discover enamels and Raku (July 31st - From 10 A.M. to 5 P.M.) > Read more +
  • Conference dinner "Samourai and cinema" with Pascal-Alex Vincent (October 14th - 6 P.M.) Read more +

Within the multimedia library of the Bassin de Pont-à-Mousson

  • Manga workshop with illustrator Tom Chanth (April 13th and May 7th) > Read more +
  • Fursohiki workshop (April 16th) > Read more +
  • Origami workshop (May 14th and 25th) > Read more +
  • Kamishibai reading (June 8th) > Read more +
  • Video games day around Nintendo (June 18th)

At the « Au fil du papier » museum of Pont-à-Mousson

Temporary exhibition « Japonism and Asia-inspired decorations... » (From May 21st to October 16th 2022) > Read more + 

At the Concorde Cinema venue of Pont-à-Mousson

Japanese movie screenings from May to July.

  • A wide range of full-length features including classics in original subtitled version > Read more +
  • A children-dedicated program and animated movies aimed at all audiences > Read more +

Guided tours

From May 25th onward, the Prémontrés Abbey cultural center offers you guided tours of the exhibition on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 4:30 P.M. The guided tours must be booked online. Should you have any difficulty, please contact Natasha Miclot at +33 3 81 10 32 (from Monday to Friday) or by email: Limited number of entries.

Chargement en cours...

Group and school visits

The academic public is welcomed for pedagogic and recreational visits adapted to different age groups. An educational package is available upon request from the cultural centre. For each group, a slot is booked for open visits or guided tours in order to offer the best conditions possible.

Register your visit (groups/schools)