| Helping Japan
17 March. In response to the 11 March earthquake and tsunami in Japan, ICCROM in coordination with UNESCO and other institutions, is aiming to develop a strategy to aid in the salvage and recovery of the country’s cultural heritage.
Currently, basic humanitarian aid and the safety of the affected people is the priority, however, cultural heritage recovery will become increasingly important. As we become aware of them, we are listing institutions and links with information. Please check back frequently.
11 April. It has now been one month since the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. As of 11 April, 466 properties in 20 prefectures have been reported as damaged.
The Japanese Agency for Cultural Affairs has launched a 'Cultural Heritage Rescue Project' to salvage unregistered collections in the affected region. The rescue operation will be conducted by a special committee formed through the cooperative involvement of the National Research Institute for Cultural Properties (Tobunken), national museums, NGOs, and other organizations. The timeframe of the project is from 1 April 2011 to 3 March 2012.
The Agency for Cultural Affairs and the Foundation for Cultural Heritage and Art Research in Japan are accepting donations for aid in the recovery of affected cultural heritage. Below are the bank coordinates where contributions can be sent.
Name of Bank: Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation
Name of Branch: Ueno
Account No.: 6615496 (Ordinary Account)
SWIFT Code: SMBC JP JT
Payee Name: The Foundation for Cultural Heritage and Art Research
Payee Address: 12-50 Uenokoen, Taito-ku, 110-0007 Tokyo Japan
For more information, please contact the Foundation for Cultural Heritage and Art Research at jimukyoku (at) bunkazai.or.jp.
30 March. As of 30 March, 416 properties located in 19 prefectures are reported as damaged, including four national treasures. Among them is the Zuigan-ji temple. According to ICOM Japan, as of 29 March, information on damage to collections has been gathered from 114 museums (there are approximately 400 museums in the affected region). Thirty-one of these museums are reported as suffering serious damage.
24 March. As of 24 March, 345 properties are being reported as damaged. On 22 March, ICCROM staff member, Daijiro Kitagawa, gave a presentation on the current situation regarding the earthquake and the status of cultural heritage properties. A copy of his presentation can be found here (pdf).
From the Architectural Division of the Agency for Cultural Affairs, Japan:
17 March. Today, Japanese national authorities visited the affected areas and discussed with local officials both the extent of damage to built heritage and the recovery process.
As of 17 March, 222 cultural properties are reported to be damaged in 15 prefectures. These include monuments, sites, building complexes, landscapes, and collections. The extent of damage and number of affected properties is still uncertain, as there are areas that rescue operations cannot enter.
Damage consists mainly of cracked walls, but so far, approximately 20 heritage properties have suffered serious damage or collapse.
Information regarding museums is limited to those at a national level in Tokyo. There has not been significant damage in storage and display, but operations have been affected by the limited power supply.
- ICOMOS Report on the Tohoku Pacific Earthquake as of 27 March 2011.
- Official announcement by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology on the damages to cultural properties (in Japanese)
- PASCO - geospatial information about the earthquake
Information on museums
Information on archives
Information on libraries
14 April, 2011