Aug 22, 2001

Conductor Comissiona passes the youth baton

When Sergiu Comissiona arrives in Japan later this month to embark on the final leg of this year’s Asian Youth Orchestra tour, it’s likely that the baton he always conducts with will feel a little heavier than usual. This year marks the acclaimed Romanian-born ...

Light at the end of the tunnel

Aug 19, 2001

Light at the end of the tunnel

For Cho Kyong Hee, artists displaying work in public spaces have a special responsibility: Installations should not impose. For those people who may pass by an installation daily on their way to and from work, for example, the work should be nothing more than ...

Aug 19, 2001

Deep and meaningful

Dull, bleak, gray and cheerless are a few of the words that could describe Tokyo’s architectural landscape. Glaring neon aside, it is a city seriously lacking in color. It’s ironic, then, that one of the most imaginative and colorful public art projects in the ...

Grains of wisdom

Aug 19, 2001

Grains of wisdom

From a distance, Kim Chang Young’s “Sand Play” seems to defy the law of gravity. Embedded into the tiled wall at the entrance of Ushigome-Kagurazaka Station is what at first glance appears to be a beach. The 10-meter-long, 2-meter-high work resembles a stretch of ...

Aug 19, 2001

So what's your angle?

Yukihiro Yoshihara’s “Technoetic Trees” is one of the few artworks on the Oedo Line located away from the ticket gates of the station. Yukihiro Yoshihara talking about his piece, “Technoetic Trees” Which is probably just as well. To appreciate the three identical sculptures that ...

Aug 5, 2001

A funny thing happened on the way . . .

It was a sunny June afternoon in northern Japan, and the perfect setting for a wedding reception: an airy room with large French windows opening onto a garden; mountains of flowers and a cake with more tiers than a Balinese rice field. Then, one ...

Jul 24, 2001

Signs of the cross in China

LOU GUAN TAI, China There is only one way into the pagoda, through a small window 10 meters above ground. Climbing the walls would likely land me behind bars: The building is around 1,300 years old and leans as prominently as the Tower of ...

Jul 24, 2001

Religious sites, relics indicate Christ beat Buddha to Japan

In 1949, former Kyoto University professor Sakae Ikeda wrote a letter in a Japanese newspaper requesting help. “Whoever may want to help reintroduce Nestorianism . . . to Japan . . . is requested to write me,” the letter pleads. An engraving on a ...

Master of a dying art

Jul 15, 2001

Master of a dying art

In order to stay true to his art, James Wright prefers to keep a low profile; to blend in with his surroundings. But in his adopted Matsubushi, a rural town in Saitama Prefecture, the fair-haired, 180-cm Scot would seem to be fighting a losing ...

Comic ambassadors

Jul 15, 2001

Comic ambassadors

A rather naive man decides to nip off to Hokkaido to enjoy the Sapporo Snow Festival without booking a place to stay. Wandering the snowy streets, he eventually comes across a solution to his problem — a love hotel. This is a scene from ...