Akiyama remodels the canon of clay

Apr 19, 2016

Akiyama remodels the canon of clay

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Artist Yo Akiyama has never been one to play by the rules. As a young student in the ceramics program at Kyoto City University of the Arts (Kyoto Geidai) in the mid-1970s, he quickly earned a reputation as a troublemaker, never content to accept ...

Kyoto's photographic slice of life

Apr 19, 2016

Kyoto's photographic slice of life

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Kyotographie is growing up. The international photography festival, which runs for a month at various stunning venues throughout Kyoto, is in its fourth year. So far there have been no signs of growing pains, even if the Kyotographie team members appear a little exhausted ...

An exhibition of things that make you go 'hmm'

Apr 12, 2016

An exhibition of things that make you go 'hmm'

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The subtitle of the Mori Art Museum’s triennial “Roppongi Crossing” exhibition three years ago was “Out of Doubt.” This year it’s “My Body, Your Voice.” In 2013, the group show was inflected by the destruction caused by the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and ...

Putting some faith into the art of decoration

Apr 12, 2016

Putting some faith into the art of decoration

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The titular kazari (decoration or ornament) as the focus of “Kazari: Decoration in Faith and Festival,” the Miho Museum’s spring exhibition, is intended to restore something of the centrality of its concept of decorative embellishment to Japanese art. While the exhibits are consummate, however, ...

'Sion Sono: The Whispering Star'

Apr 12, 2016

'Sion Sono: The Whispering Star'

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April 3-July 10 As a multi-talented director, Japanese filmmaker and poet Sion Sono has been a regular participant of international film festivals, garnering critical acclaim for his dark and expressive films such as “Noriko’s Dinner Table” (2006), “Cold Fish” (2011) and “Why Don’t You ...

'The Posters of Ikko Tanaka'

Apr 5, 2016

'The Posters of Ikko Tanaka'

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April 5-June 19 Posters are designed to attract attention — the really good ones also tempt their viewers to buy or do something. Graphic designer Ikko Tanaka (1930-2002) was arguably one of the best graphic designers in Japan, creating unique posters with bold geometric ...

A round trip to Takeoka's world

Mar 8, 2016

A round trip to Takeoka's world

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“From a Pedestal into Space,” at The National Museum of Art, Osaka (NMAO), is Yuji Takeoka’s first major retrospective in Japan, featuring works from the 1980s to today. On entering the museum’s vast gallery space, you will find it populated with minimalist sculptures of ...

'Mariko Mori: Cycloid'

Mar 8, 2016

'Mariko Mori: Cycloid'

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March 11-April 23 New York-based contemporary artist Mariko Mori made a name for herself during the 1990s, creating works such as “Play With Me,” which incorporated the Japanese otaku (obsessive fan) influences of anime and cosplay into art. Her recent works, however, are in ...