The CPCP develops new ways of engaging with cultural properties to encourage people of all ages to learn about Japan’s cultural treasures and take a stronger interest in them. This will help create a society in which all people, not just museum personnel and volunteers but also ordinary citizens, corporations, and other societal organizations give thought to and participate in protecting and passing on cultural properties.
The CPCP’s Planning Section collaborates with public and private organizations to create reproductions using modern technologies such as virtual reality, augmented reality, and mixed reality using 8K resolution video. These reproductions provide the public with user-friendly formats for interacting with and learning about Japan’s cultural properties.
The Planning Section uses these reproductions to develop exhibition programs that target a broader audience than typical exhibits, including people that are unlikely to visit museums. These exhibits give more people a chance to enjoy cultural works as they provide educational and enriching experiences.
The CPCP’s mission is to increase opportunities for people to engage with traditional Japanese culture. As part of this mission, the CPCP is streamlining the process for loaning cultural properties held in Japan’s national museums to other museums.
There are four museums affiliated with the National Institutes for Cultural Heritage – the Tokyo National Museum, Kyoto National Museum, Nara National Museum, and Kyushu National Museum. These museums have many exceptional works of art and archeological artifacts in their collections that are essential for understanding Japanese history, traditions, and culture. Japan’s national museums have a long tradition of loaning these works to other museums to give audiences around the world a chance to learn about Japanese culture and history as they enjoy these works.
The CPCP’s Loan Promotion Section will extend the reach of these efforts and allow more people to engage with the cultural treasures which have been preserved and passed down in Japan’s national museums.
A limited number of organizations in Japan are able to conduct research on museum storage environments. Despite their best efforts, museums often lack the personnel and budgetary resources to achieve the necessary internal control systems.
To improve museum exhibition and collection environments, the National Center for the Promotion of Cultural Properties offers consultations and advising regarding exhibition rooms, display cases, storage rooms, and other matters related to storage environments. The CPCP is able to loan out equipment and conduct on-site inspections and surveys for these purposes.
The CPCP also supports museums seeking to engage in storage environment research by supplying technical instruction, advice on implementation, and assistance in publicizing results.
Further, the CPCP holds workshops and seminars on storage environment management to train personnel engaged in the preservation of cultural properties. The CPCP is also actively accepting requests to lecture at outside organizations.
Development of digital media is a crucial activity for effectively managing cultural properties. Excessive handling use of the original versions of cultural works can result in irreparable damage. Digital versions are advantageous as they allow for unrestricted study of the wealth of information that can be gleaned from cultural works while also providing user-friendly formats for viewers to learn about the importance of these works in Japanese society.
Since the 1990s, the museums and research institutes affiliated with the National Institutes for Cultural Heritage have been creating digital media for the materials and works under their management. The CPCP’s Digital Resources Section is consolidating these resources to make them more accessible and user-friendly.
The Digital Resources Section will also take over existing sites such as ColBase, a searchable database of all the collections held by Japan’s national museums; and e-Museum, an online collection of high-resolution images of over a thousand National Treasures and Important Cultural Properties housed in the museums. The Section is also committed to building a cooperative environment for reviewing and improving each museum’s digital resources. In addition, the Section is involved in the Japanese government’s digital archive policy goal of creating a single-window access point for Japan’s cultural resources called Japan Search by 2020.
The Digital Resources Section handles consultations from local governments and museums seeking to make the most of digital resources by providing experience-based advice on technical challenges and appropriate project directions.