Festival Tokyo – Theatre, Dance, Music, Visual art, and Film

Sep 27, 2019 By Jason Gatewood

One of the benefits of living in the world’s largest urban area is the simple fact that there’s always something going on in town for you, no matter what you’re into. Take the arts for example. There have been no less than 3 performing arts fairs around the Metropolis just...[ Click to read more ]

Nine Japanese Artists You Should Know About

Sep 24, 2019 By Mark Guthrie

When we think of Japanese art our minds probably go straight to the two dimensional, Chinese-influenced pictures of cranes and floating castles or the lurid and grotesque kabuki characters of ukiyo-e woodblock prints. But there is so much more to the broad scope of Japanese artwork than that. From sculpture...[ Click to read more ]

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When Did Manga Become So Popular?

By Justin Hanus

Although manga comic books are popular throughout the world, in Japan reading manga is a very common pastime for people of all ages. But it wasn’t always this way. The Word “Manga” “Manga” literally means “whimsical pictures.” The term came into use in 1798 in reference to a book called...[ Click to read more ]

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Yokogawa: Where Old and New Meet in Hiroshima

Aug 26, 2019 By Hugh Cann

Historically, Yokogawa is the old Shitamachi and before the second world war was Hiroshima's commercial business district. The post-war reconstruction shifted most commercial and retail activity to Naka -ku (ward) area of central Hiroshima. Today, some of the businesses in Yokogawa remain much as they were after the immediate reconstruction....[ Click to read more ]

Going Potty over the Setomono Matsuri

Aug 20, 2019 By Mark Guthrie

Although Japan has one of the oldest ceramic traditions in the world, with earthenwares being created as early as the Jōmon period (10,000–300 BCE), as a heavily wooded country most domestic utensils in Japan were usually made of either natural or lacquered wood. This all changed when Katō Shirōzaemon, the...[ Click to read more ]

Art Aquarium Retells an Old Japanese Tradition in a New Way

Jul 30, 2019 By Jason Gatewood

Anyone with a penchant for Japanese history and a love of Japanese artistry will recognize the Japanese Goldfish, “Kingyo,” as a cultural motif instantly. From anime and manga, high fashion, and the occasional tattoo; kingyo cultural significance dates back to when they were kept as rare novelties of the rich...[ Click to read more ]

Top Museums to Visit in Kansai

Jun 20, 2019 By Justin Hanus

If you’re interested in culture, history or art, some of the best places to visit are museums. There are some fascinating and unique museums throughout Japan, and nowhere more so than in Kansai. During your time in the region, make sure to pay a visit to as many of the...[ Click to read more ]

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Five Japanese Authors You Should Read

Jun 13, 2019 By Mark Guthrie

From the stories of twelfth century court life in the world's oldest novel, Murasaki Shikibu's Tale of Genji, to the epic tales of Nobel-Laureate-in-waiting Hideo Furukawa, Japan has a rich history of spellbinding writing. To get you started on your journey into Japanese literature, below are five authors that should...[ Click to read more ]

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The Unko Museum is anything but crappy

May 29, 2019 By Jason Gatewood

We knew it was bound to happen eventually; Japan is home to the first restroom-themed restaurant, our toilet technology is talked about and adored far and wide, and we even invented this 💩 emoji. So, of course, Japan should be the first to have a museum dedicated to all things...[ Click to read more ]

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The Kawaii Rejection of Society

May 23, 2019 By Mark Guthrie

Japan is in the grips of a cult. But this is no religious extremism or political fanaticism. This cult is pink, it's fluffy, and its ringleader is a cat with no mouth. I am, of course talking about 'kawaii,' the cult of cute that inspires so much of Japanese society....[ Click to read more ]

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