When Kyoto College of Industry, predecessor to the Faculty of Engineering and Design, was established in 1902, the first faculty members brought back from abroad many important art works and specimens, preparing for new programs of education in design and industrial art. Among these instructors was TAKEDA Goichi, the first head of the Design Department, who paved the way for the school, having been the first exchange student to Europe.
The Museum and Archives, while designed for research on art works collected as teaching materials was established in 1980, as a cooperative research facility to organize and display the collection. The archive includes art works from many fields including paintings, posters, sculptures, ceramics, metalwork, lacquer ware, specimens of dyeing and weaving, archeological finds and objects from daily life. In all, the collection totals some 4,500 items. Among these is the “Sketch of Samurai Mountain Hunt”, a work by one of the most noteworthy Western-style painters of the Meiji period (1868-1912), ASAI Chu, who was also a professor in the Design Faculty at the school. There are also a collection of modern European posters and ancient and modern pieces of cloth. Many of art works in the collection have an academic and historical value, and it is not uncommon for the archive to receive requests from private parties wishing to view certain works and from museums throughout the country wishing to borrow them. The collection has been amassed with a focus on the value of design as a practical resource for design education. This is what distinguishes the archive from collections that have been assembled solely from the standpoint of artistic value.