05 Snow Country Art & Beauty

A story of beauty inspired
by and found within nature.

Snow Country Art & Beauty
Snow Country Art & Beauty
Ma Yansong/MAD Architects "Tunnel of Light" (Echigo-Tsumari Art Field)

With rich and distinctive landscapes that show entirely different expressions depending on the change of the four seasons, Tokamachi City is the ideal location for the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale, one of the world’s largest international art festivals.

From cascading terraced rice fields with long flowing leaves of green and gold, to beautiful groves of beech trees that evoke images of slender young women, Tokamachi overflows with scenery that acts both as a canvas and as the subject of art, the whole area dotted with creations making use of the natural beauty of the area.

Seasonal change brings a shift in colors throughout Tokamachi. Subtle gradations of green highlighted by a kaleidoscope of flowers in the spring. Vibrant greens of the forest and fields, accented by the vivid blue sky in the summer. Golden fields and brilliant hues of red and orange cover the mountains in fall. And stark white snow with many shades of gray in winter. Each season brings a new canvas for art, both natural and man-made.

Tokamachi is also the stage for the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale. This open-air art festival combines the magnificent scenery of natural wonders like the angular rock joints of Kiyotsu Gorge or the terraced rice fields on the mountainsides, with the creative expression found in contemporary art by both famous and emerging artists from around the world.

Cultural assets of Japan Heritage pertaining
to Tokamachi’s natural scenery and art

Kiyotsu Gorge

Sure to leave an impression on all who visit, Kiyotsu Gorge is a natural wonder of beautiful rock formations, an artistic relic of tectonic activity hidden in the mountains of southern Tokamachi. Year round, visitors enjoy the majestic scenery that changes dramatically season to season; scenery that is one work of art in the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale.

From the “Tunnel of Light,” another work of art in the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale, instagrammers and fans of natural beauty alike will delight in the display of light and shadows on the rocky lines of the gorge walls, and its reflection in the pool of water below.

Bijinbayashi Forest

Bijinbayashi, (lit. beautiful woman forest) is an eye-catching grove of beech trees whose slender bodies create elegant, graceful scenes in every direction.

A rare treat to enjoy in the lowlands, the beech trees thrive here due to the heavy snowfall each winter. These trees grew up at the same time, creating an harmonious, uniform look that draws hikers deeper and deeper into the leafy woods.

Nature and Art experiences in Tokamachi


Introducing Matsudai NOHBUTAI, a comprehensive cultural facility where visitors can experience the culture of snow country agriculture through programs involving food, hands-on experiences and other events. Many works of art that incorporate natural scenery are also on display. The Matsudai NOHBUTAI building itself is also one of the works of the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale.

Address : 3743-1 Matsudai, Tokamachi City, Niigata Prefecture
TEL : 025-595-6180

MVRDV “Matsudai NOHBUTAI” (Echigo-Tsumari Art Field)

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