Irene Wang
For Irene Wang's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:
Kenji Tanaka uses a method of paper stenciling called Ise katagami that began in the region more than 1,000 years ago.
Apr 3, 2024
In Suzuka, artist hopes Formula One can revive ancient Japanese craft
Kenji Tanaka uses an ancient method of paper stenciling called Ise katagami to create model F1 cars.
Masaya Shibasaki, 26, an employee of EXEO Group, reacts as he tries the Osaka Heart Cool-developed VR electrical device Perionoid, which simulates menstrual pain, on Thursday.
Mar 8, 2024
Japanese male office workers experience simulated menstrual pain
Companies are required to offer menstrual leave, but the time off doesn't have to be paid and around half of female workers never take it.
Staff from All Nippon Airways and a travel agency escort a Chinese tour group from Beijing upon their arrival at Haneda Airport in Tokyo on Wednesday.
BUSINESS / Economy
Aug 24, 2023
Will 'explosive spending' return to Japan with China group tours?
Hopes the tours will herald big returns clash with a struggling Chinese economy and Japan's controversial release of treated wastewater into the sea.
Nadine, a 43-year-old tourist from the U.S., wears a sumo wrestler costume and tries to spar against former sumo wrestler Towanoyama in the sumo ring at Yokozuna Tonkatsu Dosukoi Tanaka in Tokyo in June 30.
Jul 23, 2023
Sumo retirees play for laughs from tourists flooding back to Japan
Themed restaurants, including those offering sumo performances, are part of a tourism ecosystem that Prime Minister Fumio Kishida hopes will add ¥5 trillion a year to the nation's economy.
Japan Times
SOCCER / Women's World Cup
Jun 20, 2023
Nadeshiko coach says Women's World Cup TV blackout will harm game
FIFA had threatened a blackout in major European markets before reaching an agreement with broadcasters in Britain, Spain, France, Germany and Italy last week.
Japan Times
Feb 14, 2023
Japanese artist turns heads with freaky flesh-like accessories
Masataka Shishido says his art is often made-to-order by customers who request their own body parts on the items.
Japan Times
BUSINESS / Companies
Sep 12, 2022
Japan liquor businesses turn to nonalcoholic drinks to attract Gen Z
The global market value for low- and nonalcoholic drinks rose to just under $10 billion in 2021 from $7.8 billion in 2018.
Japan Times
LIFE / Lifestyle
May 4, 2022
Coffee, tea and nagging at Japan's anti-procrastination cafe
The clean, well-lit place in western Tokyo has 10 seats reserved for writers, editors, manga artists and anybody else grappling with the written word and deadlines.
Japan Times
JAPAN / Science & Health
Mar 17, 2022
Seals help Japanese researchers collect data under Antarctic ice
The seals were equipped with a head-mounted conductivity, temperature and depth sensor between March and November 2017, allowing scientists to collect observation data.
Japan Times
Feb 4, 2021
Party's over: Pandemic forces closure of iconic Kawaii Monster Cafe
The cafe had hoped to capitalize on strong demand during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, but with the outlook still uncertain a decision was made to let the lease expire and shut down.
Japan Times
May 26, 2018
Hood by Vargas: Whimsy, Americana and sandwiches
Just behind Nakatsu Station, there's an old residential pocket located within a warren of narrow alleyways. Here, change is in the air.
Japan Times
Mar 3, 2018
Koe Lobby: New arrival has all-day sustenance and style
With its high ceiling, comfortable seating and impeccably cool soundtrack, Koe Lobby ticks all the right boxes. It only opened last month and already this buzzy cafe/bakery/restaurant/lounge space has become a magnet in Shibuya for both the hungry and the hip.
Japan Times
JAPAN / Media / Japan Pulse
May 15, 2015
Funassyi — Japan’s favorite shrieking pear
It's all going pear-shaped, and that's a good thing for Funabashi's popular mascot.
Japan Times
May 8, 2015
Traditional coffee joint Inoda also makes a good breakfast
Inoda is one of Kyoto's long-established coffee chains, and has several outposts dotted around the city, but the cafe and shop on Sanjo Street is a treat, with its space to seat ratio in the region of 10 to 1.
Japan Times
May 1, 2015
Wages of sin might be death, but Greed is worth the risk
Notice: Greed closed its doors in January 2016.
Japan Times
Mar 10, 2015
All Hale lunch at this Kyoto cafe
To get to Hale you'll have to wrestle your way past the armies of tourists and locals who converge on Nishiki Market — a long, narrow market that sells everything from adzuki beans to unagi (eel).
Japan Times
BUSINESS / Japan Pulse
Mar 9, 2015
Will Line put the brakes on Uber with its taxi app?
Line is expanding its smartphone messaging platform by letting users book cabs in Tokyo via its app.
Japan Times
Dec 24, 2014
Channeling Italian style at Dah's Caffe on the Sennichimae Line
Dah's Caffe is marked by an architectural and engineering oddity: a giant circular air vent rising up from the Sennichimae Subway Line onto the street. On first glance its purpose, and ugliness, are obfuscated by a mosaic of amber tiles. The vent makes its presence felt in the cafe; one wall curves around it to accommodate the structure. But, happily the only aroma in the air at Dah's is the pungent smell of coffee.
LIFE / Digital / Japan Pulse
Dec 2, 2014
J-blip: cat montage
Give your pets a bit more personality with this simple trick.
Japan Times
LIFE / Food & Drink / THE KIDS' TABLE
Nov 25, 2014
Grab a patio lunch before winter arrives
Nothing spells fall like a pile of leaves just waiting to be jumped in, especially for children or those who are still kids at heart. Add to that a steaming hot beverage and some scrumptious eats, and a perfect fall afternoon is born.


Historically, kabuki was considered the entertainment of the merchant and peasant classes, a far cry from how it is regarded today.
For Japan's oldest kabuki theater, the show must go on