Shorter pieces shedding light on the creativity underlying Japanese culture and technology and on lives and lifestyles in Japan.
- Cooking Up Enjoyment
Delicious food has always been a source of joy. When people gather around an exquisitely prepared meal, it leads to new encounters and shared pleasure. This series looks at some of the culinary ways Japanese people are connecting with the outside world.
Farm-to-Table in Fukushima: Local Chef Serves up Fresh-Picked Treasures
Is There Life After Relocation? The Future of Tsukiji Fish Market
Revival of Japan’s Wild Game Cuisine
Five Weeks in Tokyo: The World’s Best Restaurant’s Japanese Adventure
The Endangered Appeal of Japanese Eel
The Rise of Ramen: How “Chinese Noodles” Became a Japanese Favorite
“Edomae” Sushi: A Fast Food with a Long Tradition
Sushi Chef Aoki Toshikatsu: At the Crossroads of Tradition and Innovation
Women Uncorking Wine’s Potential in Japan
Tying the Cultural Knot in the Kitchen: Japanese-Peruvian Cuisine
World’s Top Chefs Work Wonders with Japanese Ingredients
- “Cool Traditions” Stay in Tune with Modern Life
Traditional art forms and aesthetics can be infused with new creativity as they are passed along from generation to generation. This series looks at some of these “cool traditions” that remain relevant by perfectly suiting contemporary sensibilities.
Wood, Mold, and Japanese Architecture
Cai Guo-Qiang Makes a “Homecoming” to Japan
Tsuchiya Bag and the Art of the “Randoseru”: The Making of a Timeless Backpack
“Randoseru” Backpacks Shed Childish Image as They Win Global Fans
Craftsman Robert Soanes: Restorer of Samurai Armor
Fireworks by “Hanabishi” Masters Blossom in the Night Sky
Modern-day Artisans Carry On the “Ukiyo-e” Tradition
Glorious Fireworks Color the Autumn Sky
Ukiyo-e Prints Reflect the Popular Culture of Edo
Ōmagari Fireworks Bedazzle the World
Shunga: Japanese Erotic Art Takes London by Storm
Mining the Past for New Gold: Artist Yamaguchi Akira
Bonsai: Nature in the Palm of Your Hand
- Shodō: The Art of Calligraphy
Calligraphy began as a means of transcribing kanji—characters imported from China—using ink and brush. Today, shodō has evolved into an art form that not only conveys information but also serves as an eloquent medium of personal expression.
- New Perspectives on Miyazawa Kenji
Miyazawa Kenji was born in August 1896 in Hanamaki, Iwate Prefecture. He wrote a host of poems and children’s stories before his death at the age of 37 in September 1933. He drew inspiration from the Lotus Sutra and worked to improve the lives of local farmers, while battling illness for many years. This series of articles looks back at Kenji’s life and works on the 120th anniversary of his birth.
Illustrating Miyazawa Kenji (Photo Gallery)
Miyazawa Kenji and the Art of the Picture Book: The Work of Kobayashi Toshiya
Miyazawa Kenji: A Literary Life in Northern Japan
Miyazawa Kenji’s Answers for Japan and the World
- Japan’s Local Festivals: Spirit and Ceremony
Japan has many local festivals that bring communities together to watch and participate. In an atmosphere of tradition and ceremony, participants and onlookers are transported away from the everyday world. This series introduces the country’s lively, colorful celebrations.
- Contemporary Culture Going Global
Japan’s pop culture is making inroads in overseas populations and product markets and populations. As seen in this section, this is often on the strength of its creators’ dedication to careful craftsmanship, rather than due to a calculated global marketing strategy.
“Strip!”: The Manga Art of Anno Moyoco
Concert to Honor the Anime World of Nagai Gō
Wonder Festival 2016 (Photo Gallery)
“Dragon Quest Museum” Celebrates 30 Years of Classic RPG
Bending Metal: Marty Friedman Takes on the Babymetal Invasion
The Manga City Where Japan’s Spirits Dwell
Farewell, Naruto: The Curtain Closes on the World’s Best-Loved Ninja
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s J-Pop “Kawaii” in Paris
Manga Artist Brings Bushidō Spirit to France
French Manga Fans Inspire the Work of Tsutsui Tetsuya
“Anime” and “Manga” Take Root in China
Decoding the Charm of Japanese Video Games (Part Two)
A Soccer Hero Adored Around the World
Decoding the Charm of Japanese Video Games (Part One)
Lasting Popularity for a Tough Watch
If It’s Not “Kawaii,” How Can It Be Smart?
Rokkaku Ayako: An Artist with the World at Her Fingertips
- Japanese Fruit: In Pursuit of Sweet Perfection
Fruit in Japan can be startlingly expensive by global standards. Strongly associated with luxury and commonly given as a gift, flawless Japanese melons and other produce are becoming increasingly popular elsewhere in Asia, too.
- Insider’s Guide to Shintō Shrines
Amid all the change that has swept Japanese society in modern times, the position of the Shintō shrine remains rock-solid. There is always something drawing local residents to the neighborhood shrine, whether it be an annual celebration like New Year’s Day or just the hope of warding off bad luck. Foreign tourists also feel the pull of these hallowed spots, which somehow instill a sense of awe in even the most casual visitor. Through images and words, this series offers information and insights that will challenge your preconceptions and make your own shrine visit that much more meaningful.
“Shōzoku”: The Shintō Vestments
“Shamusho”: The Shrine Office
“Shintai, Shinboku”: The Divine Object or Tree
“Honden”: The Main Sanctuary Structure
“Tamagaki”: Fence Around the Sacred Space
“Haiden”: The Hall of Worship
“Komainu”: The Shrine’s Guardian Figures
“Temizuya”: The Cleansing Ritual
“Shimenawa”: The Sacred Rope
“Sandō”: The Worshipper’s Path
Torii: Gates to the Sacred Spaces
Your Virtual Guide to the Shintō Shrine
- Frightfully Fun: Japan’s Ghosts, Ghouls, and Haunted Houses
Summer in Japan is the season for scary stories—when you can’t escape the heat, you shiver with fear at tales of ghosts and yōkai. Here we introduce some of the country’s creepiest culture, from its haunted houses to its supernatural-themed art and more.
- Rhythms of Nature
Deep interaction with nature reveals truths about the human condition and provides insight on our place in the natural environment. Explore the world as it is, and as Japanese observers have captured it, in this series. (Banner photo: Caribou ford a river in Alaska. Photograph by Hoshino Michio and provided courtesy of Hoshino Naoko/Hoshino Michio Office.)