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Artist Talk by Keiko Takemiya new
All You May Want to Know About Shojo Manga
A Lecture by Tomoko Yamada
new
Naomi Kawase: In Focus
at the Open City Documentary Festival
new
Japanese Avant-garde and Experimental Film Festival 2019 new
An Introduction to Japanese Kagura by Professor Terence Lancashire new
Iwami Kagura Dance Performances come to the UK! new
UK-JAPAN Bridge Together Concert
James Taylor Quartet + Naomi Suzuki with Mari Natsuki
new
Yosuke Fujita Presents NOISEEM (MODE 2019) new
Anime's Human Machines new
The Chief, The Missionary, His Wife & Her Brother
Solo Exhibition by Nobuko Tsuchiya
at Yorkshire Sculpture International 2019

Artist Talk by Keiko Takemiya   org

 

Keiko Takemiya is arguably one of the most influential manga artists in Japan. Starting her career as an artist in late 1960 while still a teenager, her fame rapidly grew to stardom. This reached a new height in the 1970s when she became a seminal member of “the Fabulous Year 24 Group” – a new wave of female authors that revolutionised manga by developing new drawing techniques and introducing unconventional subject matters to the genre of girls’ manga, such as science fiction, fantasy, as well as boys’ love. Takemiya’s representative manga, The Poem of Wind and Trees (1976-84), which has sold nearly 5 million copies so far, is praised by critics and readers alike as a monumental work that laid the foundation for the rapidly growing genre of boys’ love within manga. In addition to her creative work, Takemiya has been a great advocate of preserving this nation-specific graphic art form as a cultural asset and was the first manga artist in Japan to be elected as President of an academic institution.

During this very special talk and in a rare appearance Takemiya, in conversation with comics historian Paul Gravett, will discuss her extensive career as one of Japan’s leading manga artists, and her inspirations behind iconic works such as To Terra… (1977-80) which shaped the precedent for female manga artists to create stories for a young male readership. Reflecting on the development of the narrative art form in Japan, she will also review what manga has meant to her and the society at large.


Date: 25 August 2019 from 2.30pm
Venue:

Foyles Bookstore, 107 Charing Cross Road, WC2H 0DT London


For more information, please click here.

This event is held in collaboration with Foyles.

And in Partnership with:

Celebrating:

 

Image Credit: ©To Terra…, KeikoTAKEMIYA

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All You May Want to Know About Shojo Manga
A Lecture by Tomoko Yamada
  org

Though it might not be widely recognised in the UK, shojo manga (girls’ manga) is an established genre within the Japanese manga world, for many decades having been primarily targeted at a female readership demographic. Constantly evolving in its narrative structures as well as the pictorial expression, it has inspired girls and young women through comic media suitable for different stages of their lives. Reflecting the demands of Japanese contemporary society, it often acts as a companion guide on which its readers can model their life styles.

So what is shojo manga and what actually defines the genre?

The Japan Foundation is delighted to welcome manga curator, critic, and shojo manga researcher at Meiji University, Tomoko Yamada, who will take you on a journey through the world of shojo manga with her insightful and informative illustrated talk. Having written extensively on the effects of the genre on visual pop culture, and interviewed many shojo manga artists including Keiko Takemiya, Yamada will delineate the origin of shojo manga as well as the characteristics and development of this unique narrative art with fresh perspective. Yamada will also elucidate how the readers have interacted with one another during the development of the genre throughout the years, while pointing out some of the pivotal moments in the history of shojo manga.

This talk will map out Japan’s arguably lesser known yet certainly one of the most expansive manga genres, as well as offer the opportunity to discover more about who’s who in shojo manga, complementing the City: Manga exhibition at the British Museum.


Date: 24 August 2019 from 2.30pm
Venue:

The Swedenborg Society | Swedenborg Hall | 20-21 Bloomsbury Way | London WC1A 2TH


For more information, please click here.

In Partnership with:

And Celebrating:

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Naomi Kawase: In Focus
at the Open City Documentary Festival
  org

 

The Japan Foundation is proud to partner with Open City Documentary Festival on screenings of a selection of works by critically-acclaimed Japanese director, Naomi Kawase.

The director herself will be in attendance.

1:30pm - Embracing + Sky, Wind, Fire, Water, Earth + Q&A

In these two deeply personal films, Naomi Kawase reflects on her relationship with her father, absent throughout her childhood. Embracing (1992) revolves around Naomi’s search for her father despite her adoptive mother’s discouragement and her own doubts about what she might find. Combining nostalgic home movies and handheld Super 8mm footage of nature, Kawase weaves together an achingly beautiful search for identity and the true meaning of family. Sky, Wind, Fire, Water, Earth (2001) chronicles Naomi’s reaction to her father’s death a decade later, drawing lifelong connections between her original search, her childhood with her adoptive parents and her unfulfilled longing for a relationship with her birth parents.

Followed by a Q&A with director Naomi Kawase

 

4:00pm - Katatsumori + See Heaven + Chiri + Intro 

This triptych of moving tributes from Naomi Kawase creates an affectionate portrait of her bond with her great-aunt who adopted and raised her. Capturing her lovingly with close up Super 8mm photography, Katatsumori (1994) introduces us to Uno Kawase as she enters her eighties. A recurrent figure in all of Kawase’s personal documentaries, Uno remains kind, good-humoured and devoted to her adoptive daughter, and See Heaven (1995) offers an intimate, experimental collage of images dedicated to the playful but tender relationship between the two. In Chiri (2012), we witness Uno’s daily routine as she nears her final days and Kawase grapples with coming to terms with her great-aunt’s passing.

Director Naomi Kawase will be present to introduce the screening.

 

Monday, 9 September at Curzon Soho Cinema

6:30pm - Birth/Mother + Extended Conversation 

About to give birth to her own child, Naomi Kawase turns her camera back on to her adoptive mother and great-aunt in this riveting examination of family, motherhood and the female body. An intensely intimate and candid film, Birth/Mother (2006) captures images of her great-aunt’s ageing body while Kawase reflects on her own journey to becoming a mother. The film offers a more complex portrayal of the relationship between the two women than Kawase’s earlier shorts, but the connection between them remains undeniable.

Naomi Kawase will join us after the screening of the film for an extended in-conversation event


Date: 8 September 2019 - 9 September 2019
Venue:

The Regent Street Cinema, 307 Regent St, London W1B 2HW

and 

Curzon Soho Cinema, 99 Shaftesbury Ave, Soho, London W1D 5DY


For more information, please click here.

Presented by:

Celebrating:

 

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Japanese Avant-garde and Experimental Film Festival 2019   org

 

The Japan Foundation is proud to partner with the Japanese Avant-garde and Experimental Film Festival as they bring yet another exciting line-up of Japanese film titles to the UK.

2019: NATION | 国家 

This year's edition of the festival examines national identity, cultural memory and perceptions of history in Japan with a programme of classic avant-garde cinema and contemporary experimental short form film. This weekend festival of screenings will be complemented by introductions from experts, Q&As, a free panel discussion and a filmmaker’s workshop for aspiring video artists.


Date: 20 September 2019 - 22 September 2019
Venue:

Various, please follow the link below for more information on individual screenings.


For more information, please click here.

Presented by:

Celebrating:

 

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An Introduction to Japanese Kagura by Professor Terence Lancashire   org

Join us for a lecture on kagura, given by Professor Terence Lancashire of Osaka Ohtani University.

From ancient times, various traditional entertainments have been created and evolved in Japan’s long history. These range from the court ensemble of gagaku to the theatre of noh, kabuki and puppetry and various instrumental ensembles including the three stringed shamisen and 13 stringed koto. In contrast to these urban forms there are a wide variety of folk performing arts which includes the shrine ritual entertainment of kagura.

Kagura, a ritual entertainment performed primarily in Shinto shrines, is one of the five main categories of Japanese folk performing arts as defined by the Agency for Cultural Affairs. Having its origins in the mythical dance of the goddess Ame no Uzume no Mikoto before a cave in which the sun goddess, Amaterasu Omikami, has hidden herself, kagura has been realised in various forms of entertainment over its long history. The oldest is the dance of miko, shrine maidens. But through the course of its history, it has also developed into theatrical representations of ancient Japanese myths and historical episodes.

Through this special talk, which will provide an overview of Japanese folk performing arts, you will discover the historical background and characteristics of this time-honoured traditional art, as well as learn how the custom has stood the test of time leading up to present day.


Date: 27 September 2019 - 28 September 2019
Venue:

Main Hall, National Museum Cardiff, Cathays Park, Cardiff CF10 3NP

and

Entrance Hall, The British Library, 96 Euston Road, London NW1 2DB


In collaboration with:

                

 

Celebrating:

 

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Iwami Kagura Dance Performances come to the UK!   org

 

We are delighted to welcome the Otsu Kagura Troupe who will perform special shows of the Iwami Kagura dance tradition in the UK. Come and join us at the places and dates below – fun for the whole family! No booking required.

What is Iwami Kagura? 

Kagura is a Shinto theatrical dance and music dedicated to the deities of Japanese mythology. It originated from a mythical event recorded in the Kojiki, a 1,300-year-old historical record of Japan, in which the female deity of dance and the arts dances to coax the female deity of the sun out of hiding in a cave so that her light would grace the world again. The older and ritualistic form is still performed at the Imperial Court, and the more theatrical forms are staple in local communities in regions of Japan.

Iwami Kagura is a form of kagura native to Iwami region of western Shimane Prefecture. It has about 300 years of history and is performed mostly during the annual celebrations of shrines in the autumn to dedicate it to the deities in gratitude and to pray for an abundant harvest throughout the year. The repertoire includes ritual dances and narrative plays based on myths. The magnificent dance, up-tempo music, and flamboyant costumes are captivating, and although being a traditional performing art, it continues to evolve over times.

 

Who are the Otsu Kagura troupe?

The troupe was founded in 1999 as the new generation to carry on the tradition of Iwami Kagura. The troupe works on preserving and developing the tradition by making new plays as well as devoting itself to preserve the classic plays to convey the appeal of the indigenous and traditional kagura. The troupe performs 41 plays and presents around 50 performances annually, performing also at many events in other cities as well as in urban areas and overseas.

The troupe also operates Mai-no-za, the first dedicated theatre for Iwami Kagura opened in April 2019, with the aims of developing new fans and making the facility as the base of promoting the kagura not only for locals but also domestic and international visitors.


Date: 27 September 2019 - 29 September 2019
Venue:

 

Main Hall, National Museum Cardiff, Cathays Park, Cardiff CF10 3NP

and 

Entrance Hall, The British Library, 96 Euston Road, London NW1 2DB

and

Japan Matsuri 2019, Trafalgar Square, London


In collaboration with:

                  

 

Celebrating:

 

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UK-JAPAN Bridge Together Concert
James Taylor Quartet + Naomi Suzuki with Mari Natsuki
  org

 

Japanese pop with a UK jazz-funk twist: performed by the critically acclaimed James Taylor Quartet and UK-based singer Naomi Suzuki. The evening celebrates the Japan-UK Year of Culture with the Bridge Together Project - presenting much loved J-pop classics specially re-arranged for an incredible night highlighting a shared love of great music and connections between the two cultures.

Special guest stars make this concert an unmissable experience. Yuriko Kotani, the BBC New Comedy Award winning comedian, will open the event and superstar actress and singer Mari Natsuki is travelling from Japan especially to give an exclusive performance. There will also be a traditional daikagura routine by Michiyo Kagami - a unique combination of talents!


Date: 1 October 2019 from 7.00pm
Venue:

Cadogan Hall, 5 Sloane Terrace, London SW1X 9DQ


For more information, please click here.

Celebrating:

 

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Yosuke Fujita Presents NOISEEM (MODE 2019)   org

 

As part of an annual series of artist-curated sonic and interdisciplinary events in extraordinary spaces - MODE - produced by Thirty Three Thirty Three, the Japan Foundation is delighted to partner on welcoming artist Yosuke Fujita as he creates distinct live sonic performances, inspired by traditional Japanese Gagaku music; incorporating flowing water, the human voice and analogue reel tapes for a multi-sensory experience.

Yosuke Fujita presents NOISEEM

Yosuke Fujita creates distinct live sonic performances that are inspired by traditional Japanese Gagaku music; incorporating flowing water, the human voice and analogue reel tapes to create spatial and sonic compositions that are designed to stimulate and embrace the eye and the ear. For the European premiere of NOISEEM, he will employ synthesised water tanks interconnected with a unique pipe organ fabricated by Fujita to construct an immersive environment that aims to elicit embodied multi-sensory experiences.

In conjunction with his performance work, Fujita has featured in numerous exhibitions including INVISIBLE LAKE (2015), presenting a sound installation that focused on underwater sounds, and CELL (2017) at the Sapporo International Art Festival, which comprised of a sonic work that amplified the sounds of black soldier fly larvae buried in the soil.


Date: 19 September 2019 from 6.30pm
Venue:

Camden Arts Centre at Cork Street, 5-6 Cork Street, London W1S 3NY


For more information, please click here.

Celebrating:

 

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Anime's Human Machines   org

In 1963 Osamu Tezuka’s TV series Astro Boy brought a new kind of robot to Japan. The robot child with a loving heart began a line of compelling, conflicted cyborgs whose existence challenges humanity.

Japanese animation has embraced robotics, cybernetics and artificial intelligence as major themes. More interestingly, it uses these themes to explore complex moral and social questions: humanity’s responsibility for its actions, response to the other, greed, short-termism, failure to care for the ecosystem that sustains us.

The Japan Foundation is delighted to be associated with Barbican's season which examines the challenge of the man-machine interface through eight films on various aspects of humanity’s response to technological change. One interesting factor to emerge from these films is how our own view of technology has changed since the earliest was released. Another is how humanity still refuses responsibility for the impact of our actions. These films give no answers, but suggest responses.


Date: 12 September 2019 - 30 September 2019
Venue:

Barbican Centre, Silk Street, London, EC2Y 8DS


For more information, please click here.

    

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The Chief, The Missionary, His Wife & Her Brother   JPsupported

Discover the amazing family of the Hertford Museum founders and their fascinating lives amongst the Ainu, the indigenous people of Hokkaido, North Japan. The Japan Foundation is proud to support this exhibition's telling of the story of Missionary John Batchelor, his wife Louisa, her brother Walter Andrews, Bishop of Hokkaido, and the inimitable Chief Penri of Piratori.

Illustrated by fantastic Japanese items from the museum's own collections as well as examples of Ainu culture loaned by the British Museum. 


Date: 13 July 2019 - 2 November 2019
Venue:

For more information, please click here.

                

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Solo Exhibition by Nobuko Tsuchiya
at Yorkshire Sculpture International 2019
  JPsupported

Date: 22 June 2019 - 29 September 2019
Venue:

The White Gallery, Leeds Art Gallery, The Headrow, Leeds LS1 3AA


For more information, please click here.

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