PHOTO HISTORY MUSEUM ~ History of Photography — more than 170 years ~

The Photo History Museum is a rare venue where you can learn about the history of photography and progress of cameras through viewing and touching exhibits. Enjoy our collection displayed in three categories.

  • History of Photography

    History of Photography

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  • Hands-on Experience with Replicas

    Hands-on Experience with Replicas

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  • Films and Cameras Throughout
    the History of Fujifilm

    Films and Cameras Throughout

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The copies of exhibit catalog covering the history of photography are available at the Tokyo Service Station on the Second Floor (1,000 yen including tax).

Current Exhibitions


The Photo History Museum at FUJIFILM SQUARE Presents
Shinzo Maeda, a Photographic Explorer Seeking Color: The Quest for New Discoveries
Date :
Part 1   The Home Village Period : November 1, 2018 — December 28, 2018
Part 2   The Hills Period : January 4, 2019 — February 28, 2019

Shinzo Maeda was a photographer who determined the course of Japanese landscape photography in the 1970s. His unique style captures nature with a sophisticated sense of form, discovering new beauty in the Japanese landscape, and has influenced many landscape photographers until the present day. The beautiful hilly landscapes of Biei and Kamifurano in Hokkaido have become widely known as a result of Maeda discovering their beauty and publicizing it in the form of photographic works.

Born in 1922 in what is now the city of Hachioji in Tokyo, Maeda worked first in a trading company, then founded Tankei Photo Agency Co., Ltd. in 1967, where he started his photographic activities with a business renting out and selling photographs as products. It was in 1971 that his destiny changed. This change was prompted by his stopping off at the town of Biei in Hokkaido on his way home from a three-month photography trip during which he travelled the entire length of Japan. There he saw hills rolling endlessly into the distance and colorful land dotted with trees. This vast hilly landscape filled Maeda with powerful inspiration, and he subsequently pioneered a new field of landscape photography drawing on his own unique style.

The exhibition will be divided into two parts to display landscape photographs representing two periods in Maeda's photographic life: the monochrome photographs with which he started, and the color photographs for which he is best known. The first part, entitled “The Home Village Period,” will show works shot in the 1950s and 1960s depicting Maeda's home village of Ongata in Tokyo, and other rustic country scenes from all over Japan. The second part, entitled “The Hills Period,” will show works shot after his first encounter with the hills of Biei in 1971. This part features the dye transfer prints* that Maeda created with particularly close attention to detail. This large collection of photographs, starting with scenes of Maeda's fondly remembered birthplace and taken over a period of around 40 years, allows viewers to experience the rich scenic exploration that Maeda pursued so diligently. His esthetic, his philosophy, and even his way of life, honed by Maeda himself through his own photographic experience, are condensed in this substantial oeuvre.


Maeda observed that “thoughts are limited, but feelings are without limits.” These words bring to mind the sight of land extending limitlessly into the distance, and combined with scenes that retain their eternal allure in the form of photographs, they are sure to awaken an esthetic sensibility that we had all but forgotten. Visit the exhibition and immerse yourself in the world of the landscape photographer Shinzo Maeda.

* Color prints produced by separating color photographs into three colors (yellow, magenta, and cyan) and transferring the dyes. They are distinguished by depth of color and full expression of gradation. Since 1995 the technique has gradually been disappearing because the process is complicated, the work requires a high degree of skill, and the cost is high.

Current Exhibitions

Explanation Sessions
Each day at 15:30, an explanation session of the Fujifilm Photo History Museum and the current photo exhibitions are held for retired Fujifilm staff for a period of approx. 30 minutes. All visitors to FUJIFILM SQUARE are also invited to attend these explanations sessions.

Time and days Everyday at 15:30
(including weekends and public holidays; duration: approx. 30 minutes)
VenueFujifilm Photo History Museum
* please note that seating is not available
No prior application required

  • In 1991, the Association for Corporate Support of the Arts founded these awards, which recognize highly beneficial projects by corporations and corporate foundations for the support of the arts, with the aim of encouraging corporate patronage of artistic projects and increasing public interest in these activities.
  • The awardees are decided on the basis of an evaluation that covers the company's ingenuity and making use of its managerial resources, the involvement of the company in the arts, culture and the wider community, the company's attitude to continuing and expanding the activities, and the activities' degree of importance in contributing to the arts and wider culture.
  • This year's awards, entitled “This is MECENAT 2018”, attracted 152 entrants. A town of third-party experts selected a total of seven awards, namely, the Grand Mécénat Award, five Awards for excellence and the Award Granted by the Commissioner for Cultural Affairs.

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