Boom samurai boom
Marco Galli
Museo d’Arte Orientale, Venice

Boom samurai boom is a comic-strip story Marco Galli set at the Venice Museum of Oriental Art.

“What is this place? Did I get hit by some kind of spell?” Adelgonda was in Japan with her husband Enrico. After listening to a mysterious monk, she suddenly finds herself in a building packed with statues and suits of talking Samurai armour. Worse, the bloodcurdling Black Dragon is roaming around the place, looking for heads to chomp off out of hatred for foreigners. But a young princess never loses heart, and Adelgonda is not one to frighten easily… On the contrary, she’s a pretty tough little nut to crack! Perhaps it’s the Dragon who should start worrying…

Museo d’Arte Orientale, Venice

The museum holds one of Europe’s largest collections of Japanese art of the Edo period (1603–1868) as well as works from China and South-east Asia.

It has been housed since 1928 in the extraordinary Ca’ Pesaro, which is municipal property.

The collection was built up by Prince Henry, Count of Bardi, who bought over 30,000 items during a log trip around the world between 1887 and 1889, most of which ended up in the hands of the state one way or another. The museum is open every day except Monday from 10.30 to 18.00. Free guided tours can be booked.

Inside the Magical Museum
For me, a museum must be a magical place... Timeless, in fact: a place where time stands still. Museums talk to us “of" time, they freeze it and break it up, making it something we can all inhabit. I reached the Museum floor by lift. Paradoxically, this modern “affectation” catapulted me straight into the atmosphere of the place: as soon as the doors slid open, I found myself immersed in the me-dieval Orient. The brusque transition from a “Venetian” ground floor to the “Oriental” top floor, with-out any stop-offs along the way, without any warning of the coming change, gave the visit a unique flavour. For me, a museum must be a magical place... The Venice Museum of Oriental Art is a place where magic supercedes reality, where time no longer exists, and where you can breathe with the abandon of a happy child.
Marco Galli
Marco was born in Montichiari, near Brescia, in 1971. He attended art school in Mantua, and then moved to London and Los Angeles for a few years. 001 Edizioni published his books Il Santopremier (2009) and Nero petrolio (2010). He worked as a character designer for Gatta Cenerentola, the animated film nominated for an Oscar in 2018. Coconino Press - Fandango has published four of his comic-strip books: Oceania Boulevard (2013), Nella camera del cuore si nasconde un elefante (2015), Le chat noir (2017) and La notte del corvo (2019). Progetto Stigma published his book Èpos (Eris Edizioni, 2018).
Pair of jûnishinshô
Genchō (13th century) These sculptures represent two of the Twelve Heavenly Generals, protective deities of Yakushi Nyorai, the Buddha of Healing. They correspond to the twelve vows of Yakushi for the preservation of the faithful and their task is the prevention and cure of illnesses. Associated with the signs of the zodiac, they are also regarded as guardians of the hours of the day. The style of the works displays characteristics typical of the Kamakura period (1185–1300), including the careful study of anatomy, the vigorous and dynamic structure and the use of glass eyes in the wooden heads to create a piercing gaze.
Onna norimono (noblewoman's palanquin)
Japan, Edo period (1603–1868) This type of sedan chair for ladies of high degree was used on official occasions. The external decoration of black and gold lacquerwork presents an alternation of stylized geometric patterns and paulonia flowers. Apart from the sliding doors, the interior is lined with paper bearing painted and gilded depictions of the seasons and propitious symbolic animals. The lady sat on a silk cushion, which can still be seen inside together with the padded armrests.
Wayang kulit puppet
Java, 19th century The puppets of wayang kulit, the shadow play of Indonesia, were made of cut, painted and gilded water buffalo hide. They represent the heroes of religious poems. Wayang kulit originally involved performances of a shamanic nature that lasted for many hours, from dusk to dawn, staged entirely by the dalang or puppeteer accompanied by an orchestra. A lantern cast the shadows of the puppets onto a screen.
China, 18th century Once the property of the Bourbon family, whose coat of arms it bears, this board has splendid pieces of finely carved ivory partially painted red. This very ancient game probably originated in India, where the rooks take the form of elephants, and soon spread through the East and the West. The rules now in force were codified at the end of the 15th century. The chessboard is exhibited together with the splendid lacquered table in which it was kept after use.
Jūnishinshō 1
Pedine del gioco degli scacchi 2
Guanyin 3
Statuina di porcellana
Brigata tra i ciliegi in fiore 4
Inrō 5
Porta erbe medicinali
Marionetta per il wayang kulit 6