Louise Bourgeois’ Maman Spider at Roppongi Hills

The Maman spider sculpture by Louise Bourgeois is a famous landmark in Tokyo.  You can find it under one of the city’s tallest skyscrapers, Roppongi Hills.  At 30 feet tall and 33 feet wide, it is tough to miss.   It might not be the best place to meet someone who fears arachnids.  But it is still a popular meeting spot. Some people, like myself, prefer to photograph it.

The first time I saw it, it creeped me out a little because I don’t like spiders.  After seeing it so many times, it’s not scary at all.  I got used to it.

Actually, it reminds me more of one of the Martians from the H. G. Wells book, War of the Worlds. It is a fantastic piece of work with a lot of detail.  From below, you can see twenty-six marble eggs in its belly.   There is nothing scary about it at all.

There are six more of these Maman spider sculptures around the world. And even if you fear eight-legged creatures, I doubt you’ll find them very scary after seeing them a few times! Louise made them with a particular thought in mind.

She created them in honor of her mother. Spiders are like mothers. They are nurturers and protectors of their young.  Plus, they also weave and spin their homes. They are just like our mothers. And if that fails, try my idea. Think of them as Martians!

Where is Louise Bourgeois's Maman spider sculpture?

The spider is under the Roppongi Hills skyscraper in Roppongi. It is a short walk from Roppongi Station, on the Tokyo Metro Hibiya, and Toei Oedo Lines. Click here to see it on Google Maps.

Wrapping up

The photos here were from my fourth attempt at photographing the giant spider.  A couple of them seem slightly soft.  That might be a result of the time of day.  I went there relatively early in the morning.  Some day, I’ll try again.  Please come back to check those pictures out!

What gear did I use for these photos?

  • Camera:  Fujifilm X-T3
  • Lenses:  
    1. Fujifilm XF10-24 mm F4 R OIS
    2. Fujifilm XF 16-55 mm F2.8 R LM WR
    3. Fujifilm  XF 55-200 mm F3.5-4.8 R LM OIS

For more art articles, look at:

External websites about Louise Bourgeois

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