Written or rapped, Seiko Ito has a way with words

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It's hard to describe Seiko Ito with one handy label. When I ask my friends to do it, they struggle. "He's a TV comedian on a show for kids," says one. "He's an award-winning novelist," says another, before adding — "And he's one of Japan's first rappers!" "I heard he's really into ...

Fine tableware maker offers VIP treatment

Jun 15, 2017

Fine tableware maker offers VIP treatment

Celebrating more than a century of creating fine porcelain, Japan's Noritake, a world-renowned maker of fine dinnerware, will invite diplomats from various countries living in Japan, foreign businesspeople and others to an exclusive fair at which customers will be given VIP treatment. The fair will ...

Seiko contemporary masters demonstrate craftsmanship

Mar 27, 2017

Seiko contemporary masters demonstrate craftsmanship

Demonstrating the quintessential Japanese sense of beauty and intricate craftsmanship, Seiko Watch Corp. is releasing another limited edition mechanical watch from its high-end Credor brand this summer. Added value by engraving The upcoming limited edition — only eight watches are being made — features 3-D engraved ...

Breaking the comic book glass ceiling

| Mar 18, 2017

Breaking the comic book glass ceiling

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Four years ago, Chinese-American writer Marjorie Liu had a simple but persistent idea: create an epic fantasy comic book series about a classic Japanese kaijū (strange beast) movie monster that has a connection to a girl. She knew it should take place entirely in Asia, ...

Japanese folklore meets anime in Kyoto

| Jan 21, 2017

Japanese folklore meets anime in Kyoto

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The colors were jarring. Beneath the vermillion torii gates of Kyoto's Shimogamo Shrine and surrounded by the olive broadleaves of Tadasu Forest was a pool of furry, bright yellow ponchos, decorated with the brown facial features, rounded ears and bulbous oblong tails of the ...

The top entertainment stories of 2016

Dec 30, 2016

The top entertainment stories of 2016

The Japan Times newsroom selected these culture stories as the most important of 2016. 1. Nothing lasts forever: After conflicting reports dominated tabloids, J-pop act SMAP finally announced a breakup planned for New Year's Eve. Regardless of whether it was in-fighting or exhaustion that led ...

Centenarian calligrapher continues innovation

Dec 1, 2016

Centenarian calligrapher continues innovation

It is a remarkable sight to see artist Toko Shinoda in her studio, wielding her calligraphy brush, one out of hundreds surrounding her, with nothing short of indefatigable self-assuredness. And even more remarkable is that Shinoda is on the verge of turning 104 years ...