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Missing the light at 'Roppongi Crossing'

Oct 16, 2013

Missing the light at 'Roppongi Crossing'

by C.B. Liddell

I’ve always thought that the “Roppongi Crossing” exhibitions try too hard. They take themselves too seriously and usually end up missing the point. Held every three years at the Mori Art Museum, the shows bring together heavily curated selections of contemporary art in an ...

Exploring Japan's ancient capital inside and out

Oct 16, 2013

Exploring Japan's ancient capital inside and out

by Rhiannon Paget

Beneath Kyoto, the destination par excellence of tourists, aesthetes, and historians, are the scars and ashes of a much older capital of Japan. Founded in 794 as the seat of imperial authority, after a devastating civil war from 1467 to 1477, the city was ...

A Michelangelo appetizer

Oct 9, 2013

A Michelangelo appetizer

by C.B. Liddell

This has been quite a year for fans of Renaissance art in Japan, with all three of its giants — Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, and now Michelangelo — featuring in exhibitions. While the da Vinci show was weak in content and the Raphael quite ...

Explore the many ways to read cinema

Oct 9, 2013

Explore the many ways to read cinema

by Matthew Larking

Marcel Broodthaers’ films mostly deal with relations between images and words, which is unsurprising given that he was a poet first who turned to film because he came to understand the medium as an extension of language. In their combination, he sought harmony between ...

Complex issues knitted into the fabric of art

Oct 9, 2013

Complex issues knitted into the fabric of art

by David Labi

It’s difficult to say something new about the Holocaust in face of an immense body of work produced over seven decades. Consequently more outlandish forms of expression are often required to inspire a fresh reaction. Israeli artist Gil Yefman works with text, textures and ...

Celebrating Japan's artists who loved love

Oct 7, 2013

Celebrating Japan's artists who loved love

by Victoria James

The British Museum’s press officer, Claire Coveney, comes hurrying up to take me to the galleries of the museum’s latest hot-ticket show, “Shunga: Sex and pleasure in Japanese Art,” and I’m not surprised she looks run off her feet. Pre-opening interest in this new ...

The Towada Art Center expands its landscape

Oct 2, 2013

The Towada Art Center expands its landscape

by Stuart Munro

Ever since the Towada Art Center opened five years ago, the city in Aomori Prefecture has seen its prospects dramatically alter. Not only by the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami, but by the subsequent devastation of neighboring areas, all of which compounded ...

Kansetsu Hashimoto's Chinese rebellion

Sep 25, 2013

Kansetsu Hashimoto's Chinese rebellion

by Matthew Larking

From the end of the Edo Period (1603-1867), Japanese art began to shift its fundamental cultural orientation from China to Europe. Kansetsu Hashimoto, however, (1883-1945) initially abjured, and this had much to do with his upbringing Born in Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture, his father was ...

<em>Nihonga</em>: without the hand over the eye

Sep 18, 2013

Nihonga: without the hand over the eye

by C.B. Liddell

At its essential level, art is a battle between the eye and the hand; the first representing sensory input, the second artistic habit and convention. When the hand outweighs the eye, art can become over-stylized, clichéd, and eventually dead. Asian art has been particularly ...