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London, it appears, is a good place to learn about both past and present Japan. Last year, as Britain celebrated 150 years of cultural exchange with Japan, it hosted a number of major shows, including a large-scale matsuri (festival) in Spitalfields Market, a comprehensive exhibition of Utagawa Kuniyoshi woodblock prints at the Royal Academy of Arts, as well as a collection of ancient dogu ceramic figures at The British Museum.

This year, the Barbican Center continues the love affair with various events showcasing some of Japan’s most famous creatives. “Future Beauty: 30 Years of Japanese Fashion” includes designs from Issey Miyake and Yohji Yamamoto; “Aspects of Japanese Cinema” features films from Akira Kurosawa and Takashi Miike; and a performance of the play “Complicite: Shun-kin” brings the popular actress Eri Fukatsu to the stage.

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