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The Nippon Bunraku Project Brings Barrier-Free Performances of Classical Puppet Theater to Ise Shrine

A colorful oneri procession of bunraku puppets delighted onlookers before the first-ever barrier-free bunraku performances presented as part of the Nippon Bunraku project. Narration-displaying tablet computers and audio guides made the seven performances offered at Ise Shrine widely accessible.
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The Avant-Garde in Raku Ware

The name Raku today enjoys international currency in the field of ceramic art, but the history and philosophy of traditional Raku ware are little known to the world. Here we explore the avant-garde spirit encapsulated in Raku tea bowls.
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A Feast for the Eyes and Stomach: Megutama, the Photography Book Café

Photobook Diner Megutama may be one of the only places of its kind in the world. Browse through this café’s collection of more than 5,000 photography books while enjoying healthy, seasonal dishes, indulging your love of the camera craft or just taking an unhurried moment for yourself.
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Talking About Japan’s Photo Culture with Photography Critic Iizawa Kōtarō

When discussing photography in Japan, one name that is certain to come up is that of Iizawa Kōtarō. Since beginning his career as a photography critic in the 1980s, Iizawa has gone on to organize exhibitions, launch the seminal photography magazine Déjà-vu, and otherwise contribute ceaselessly to the growth and development of Japan’s photographic culture. Iizawa spoke to Nippon.com about the ties between Japanese photography and the city of Tokyo.
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Keeping Japan’s Traditional Music Alive: Koto Player Curtis Patterson

Chicago-born Curtis Patterson has lived in Japan since 1986, dedicating himself to the koto, a traditional Japanese instrument something like the harp. In addition to composing and performing music for the koto, he is an avid teacher seeking to boost the dwindling number of koto players.
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Natsume Sōseki: Japan’s Foremost Modern Novelist

A portrait of Natsume Sōseki, Japan’s most highly regarded modern author, 150 years after his birth. Skilled in both the traditional learning of classical Chinese and the newly fashionable English, Sōseki transformed Japanese literature in the early twentieth century. In classic works like Kokoro, his characters grapple with the pains of egoism and isolation.
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“Irezumi”: The Japanese Tattoo UnveiledYamamoto Yoshimi

Prized as the epitome of urban cool in the Edo period and outlawed as backward during the Meiji era, tattooing has had a checkered history in Japan. Cultural anthropologist Yamamoto Yoshimi provides a brief survey of irezumi from ancient times to the present.
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Cai Guo-Qiang Makes a “Homecoming” to JapanDemura Kōichi (Text)/Izumiya Gensaku (Photographs)

Weaving motifs from Chinese culture, history, and thought, Cai Guo-Qiang began creating gunpowder drawings while living in Japan. What does the country mean for this world-leading contemporary artist?
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When Beatlemania Came to JapanHoshika Rumiko

I met the Beatles in June 1965. I boarded a plane for the first time in my life and flew to London for an exclusive interview with John, Paul, George, and Ringo at EMI’s legendary Abbey Road studios. A year later, the Beatles came to perform in Japan, at the Nippon Budōkan. Following that original interview in 1965, I was able to meet and interview the Beatles every year until the band split in 19…
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“Baby in Hell”: The Latest Haunted House Attraction of a Horror Maestro

View posters of past haunted houses produced by master of fear Gomi Hirofumi and watch a Nippon.com team enter his most recent creation.
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