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Crusading for Beauty: Lewis Biggs, Curator of the Aichi Triennale

From August 10 to October 27, 2013, the cities of Nagoya and Okazaki will host the Aichi Triennale—a festival of contemporary art. We talk to Lewis Biggs, one of the curators, about the ability of art to revitalize cities and improve people’s lives.

Mining the Past for New Gold: Artist Yamaguchi AkiraBrigitte Koyama-Richard (interviewer)

Yamaguchi Akira is an artist who uses the techniques of traditional Japanese painting to explore new possibilities for contemporary art. With its humorous and contempory sensibility, his work has beguiled audiences around the world. In this interview, a French scholar of Japanese art looks at the roots of Yamaguchi’s creativity.

Yamaguchi Akira’s World (Photos)Yamaguchi Akira

Artist Yamaguchi uses the technique and approaches of traditional Japanese painting to open up new possibilities for contemporary art. His superbly detailed paintings reward close inspection. Take a closer look!

One Hundred Bags of Rice: Investing in Japan’s FutureHosoda Haruko

Japan is currently undergoing a period of transformation that ranks alongside the Meiji Restoration and the changes that followed defeat in World War II as a defining moment in its modern history. Despite this, our university system still concentrates almost exclusively on the kind of practical skills that will be of immediate use to students once they enter the working world. As a result, many st…

Tokyo Station Lights Up the Sky Once More

The beautiful red-brick Tokyo Station building once more became a canvas for a 3D projection show in December 2012. It was so popular, though, that overcrowding caused organizers to cut short the show’s run for safety reasons. We managed to capture a video while it was on.

Giving a Flowering Art a New Arrangement

Ikebana flower arranging has a history stretching back over 500 years. One world-renowned practioner of the art today is Kariyazaki Shōgo, who brings his own unique style to this traditional art. In this interview, we discuss his recent projects and the aesthetics of flowering arranging.

Manga: Not Just in Japan

Although Japanese manga is gaining popularity abroad, Japanese readers have little awareness of comics and similar publications produced abroad. We talk to Frédéric Toutlemonde, a Frenchman who is looking to change this.

Tapping into Art’s Power in Post-3/11 Japan

The Aichi Triennale, which debuted in 2010, is wide-ranging art exhibition held in Nagoya. The theme of the event to be held in 2013 is “Awakening.” We sat down with the artistic director of the exhibition, Igarashi Tarō, to find out more about this theme and discuss the potential of art in Japan following the earthquake and tsunami of 2011.

Isezaki Jun’s Beautiful “Bizen” Pottery (Photos)Ōhashi Hiroshi (Photographer)

Isezaki Jun has been designated as a “living national treasure” for his “bizen” pottery creations. This traditional style of pottery is distinguished for its reddish-brown color and lack of glaze. Here we take a closer look at his marvelous creations.

Why is Homosexuality Absent from Japanese Television?Kato Yuko

British theatre fans were pleasantly surprised by the recent news of a new television drama series in the works. The British television channel ITV announced that Sir Ian McKellen and Sir Derek Jacobi will play an old, gay couple in a new sitcom series. I found this news wonderful and very interesting. Ian McKellen is one of the most respected actors in the English speaking world. He is known t…

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