John L. Tran

For John L. Tran's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

The power of cultural and economic capital

Art Nov 6, 2019

The power of cultural and economic capital

Compared to exhibitions in which art objects are meant to seduce us into epiphanic transcendence, the works in "Surface and Custom," a group show at Shiseido Gallery organized by Berlin-based artists Jay Chung and Q Takeki Maeda, are more akin to frank expositions about ...

So much to say — so many ways to show it

Art Oct 15, 2019

So much to say — so many ways to show it

Same-sex relationships, American bases in Okinawa, globalization, the Olympics, the atomic bomb, national identity, the exploitation of natural resources — "Image Narratives: Literature in Japanese Contemporary Art" at The National Art Center, Tokyo, does not lack for hot button topics.

'Reading Images': Take the time to read into photography

Art Oct 8, 2019

'Reading Images': Take the time to read into photography

The Tokyo Photographic Art Museum exhibition "The Time of Photography" starts with kitsch late 19th-century Yokohama shashin — hand-colored photos of Japanese scenes for sale to foreigners — and ends with the evanescence of Rinko Kawauchi's photography of everyday life made poetic through the ...

Art at a science museum: When worlds collide

Art Sep 24, 2019

Art at a science museum: When worlds collide

The premise of "Illuminating Landscapes: The Integration of Art and Science," as designer Taku Satoh puts it, is to explore "art and science together, not separated, as is too common in today's world."

Julian Opie: A fascinating view of the mundane

Art Sep 3, 2019

Julian Opie: A fascinating view of the mundane

Julian Opie's schematic reductions of people, animals and landscapes to planes of color may be fun and casual, but it's not just eye-candy — he gets us to see much more than he shows us.