A ruff guide to Seeing Eye dogs in Japan

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Ariel is a devoted labrador. Named after the title character in Disney's "The Little Mermaid," Ariel can't get enough of her owner, 37-year-old Kanako Suzuki. Ariel rolls on her back, begging to be petted, and when Suzuki joins her on the floor, the animal jumps onto her lap — all ...

Sep 17, 2017

Sculptor Shintaro Okamoto cracks the ice in New York

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As New York City's bar owners and mixologists strive for the perfect drinking experience, Shintaro Okamoto encourages them to consider an often-overlooked detail — the quality of the ice. Okamoto, 43, founded his namesake ice studio in 2003 while still in graduate school for fine ...

Sep 3, 2017

Yawatahama's bright idea of a black list

A scenic western Japan port city has gone to the dark side in a bid to attract visitors — offering them an array of black-colored foods and other items, the same color as the water of the local onsen hot-spring spa. After the ...

Reconstructing the Japanese house

Aug 13, 2017

Reconstructing the Japanese house

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After very successful runs in Rome and London, "The Japanese House: Architecture and Life after 1945," an exhibition of maquettes, photographs, plans and drawings, is now in the National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo. For providing an extensive look at varied and eclectic forms that ...

Taking minimalism to the next level

Aug 13, 2017

Taking minimalism to the next level

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Ever since the release of Marie Kondo's 2011 bible on the Japanese art of decluttering, much of the developed world has been somewhat fixated on tidying up. Kondo's "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" has been so influential over the past six years or so ...