This traditional papier-mâché Daruma doll was purchased at the start of the Teen Tokyo exhibition process. One eye was filled in at that point, according to Daruma doll custom: the blank second eye serves as a reminder to persevere and complete a goal or task. The second eye was filled in when Teen Tokyo opened on May 20, 1992, and this event was inscribed on the back of the doll, also according to Daruma doll custom.
The Teen Tokyo exhibition evolved from the Boston Children's Museum’s desire to present a more modern view of Japan than that presented by The Japanese House. The Japanese House represents a traditional way of living that is rapidly disappearing in Japan, thus its presence in the Museum can create a misleading impression among visitors about daily home life in Japan today. Teen Tokyo complemented the House by presenting contemporary Japan and the ways it was similar to the rest of the industrialized world, showing what it had adopted from the world, and what aspects of it had been adopted by others. Please see the Timeline section of The Japanese House website for more information on Teen Tokyo.