Folk Art, Craft and Design


Infused into Every Element

When the renovated and reimagined Mingei International Museum reopens on September 3, 2021, the Museum will highlight its rich collection of historical and contemporary folk art, craft and design as never before. As part of the dynamic and welcoming transformation project, the gallery spaces will not be the only place visitors experience “art of the people.” Visitors will find functional, beautiful and surprising elements in the building’s architecture and design, including curtains, flooring, lighting and more. In partnership with Mingei, the nationally recognized firm LUCE et studio envisioned the Museum’s physical transformation focusing on artist collaborations, accessibility, functionality and well-crafted design.

Mingei’s inaugural exhibitions GLOBAL SPIRIT and HUMBLE SPIRIT / PRICELESS ART, are both drawn from the Museum’s notable collection of folk art, craft and design from around the world. Selections from the permanent collection will also be on view in the Museum’s new, free Commons level, connecting the museum’s roots in the early-20th-century Japanese mingei movement to its collecting mission around the concept of “art of the people.”

Mingei will also feature iconic objects from its permanent collection in its new Courtyard and at the entrances of the Museum. New, site-specific commissions – by Petra Blaisse, Claudy Jongstra, Christina Kim and architect Jennifer Luce in collaboration with A. Zahner/Zahner Labs – will be installed throughout the building, in formal and conceptual dialogue with the architecture and collection. Located in the heart of historic Balboa Park, the Museum’s reopening exhibitions, Commons level installation and outdoor public art connect park visitors with stunning everyday objects, inspiring them to embrace their own creativity.

The September 3 reopening kicks off a month of celebratory activities with entry into the Museum Friday, September 3 through Monday, September 6 free for all. To learn more about Mingei’s reopening visit



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Kamran Saeed