Hayao Miyazaki and his works will be the Academy Museum’s inaugural temporary exhibition, marking the first North American museum retrospective dedicated to the work of its namesake: the anime artist and filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki.
Curated by the museum in collaboration with Japan’s Studio Ghibli, which Miyazaki co-founded in 1985, Hayao Miyazaki features more than 300 objects, including original imageboards, character designs, storyboards, layouts, backgrounds, posters, and cels from Studio Ghibli’s archives—including pieces on public view outside of Japan for the first time.
Hayao Miyazaki is thematically organized into seven sections. Visitors enter through the Tree Tunnel gallery, created to evoke the young character Mei’s path to discovery in Totoro; Creating Characters introduces Miyazaki’s many protagonists; Making Of illustrates the filmmaker’s early career and the founding of Studio Ghibli, as well as the process of producing an animated feature film such as Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (1984).
The Creating Worlds section includes the immersive Sky View installation, capturing the contrast between beautiful, natural environments and industrial settings often featured in Miyazaki’s movies; Transformations explores the metamorphoses his characters and settings often experience; the Magical Forest gallery, with its Mother Tree installation, highlights the interconnectedness of humans, nature, and the spiritual worlds; and a Spirited Away-inspired portal moves visitors gently from Miyazaki’s world back to the real one.
Accompanying Hayao Miyazaki will be a 256-page, richly illustrated catalogue published by the Academy Museum and DelMonico Books and available when the museum opens in April 2021 along Wilshire Blvd in the USA’s Los Angeles.