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With the year 2000 rapidly approaching, we are gravely concerned about the current position of Japan in world affairs and the role that our nation is expected to play in the new century. Living in the latter part of the twentieth century, we can enjoy the economic prosperity resulting from forty years of hard endeavor since the end of World War II, but in the process of reaching this level we have sacrificed much and we have either lost sight of many of our old values, or their quality and shape have been changed owing to our negligence whilst involved in the race to move ahead. The changes that are occurring in the arts in these final years of the century are demonstrating that our own culture is fast losing its character and traditions. Whilst Japan is considered a major economic power, people tend to regard her as a country of relatively minor cultural significance. These considerations, together with our isolation from international society, suggest some uncertainty about our country's future.

In order to replenish and reinvigorate the creative power rooted in the soil of Japan, it is essential to infuse our own culture with a host of fresh ideas and allow a free flow of artistic expression to develop abundantly. One significant means to this end is the promotion of international cultural exchange at a highly active level, refreshing our sensibilities and insight to the point where creativity can be restored within the context of contemporary society, and this, in return, should enable us to regain our international perspective.

The objectives of The Saison Foundation shall be (a) to carry out activities conductive to the stimulation of creativity amongst persons or bodies engaged in various fields of art and culture, and (b) to expedite international cultural exchange by the provision of grants such as to Japanese artists wishing to study in foreign countries and to foreign artists desirous of undertaking a period of study in Japan, or to projects inviting foreign artists and groups to show their work or present their performances in Japan. It is our sincere hope that through these activities we shall be able to contribute to the development of culture in our country.

July 1987
Seiji Tsutsumi


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