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The Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme returns in early 2017 with a diverse programme of films based around the theme of ‘Desires, Hopes and Impulses in Japanese Cinema’. Kicking off at ICA, London on 3 February, the season will tour to a further 14 venues around the UK.
Date: 3 February – 29 March 2017
Venue: 15 venues nationwide
For the full line-up and details of participating venues, please click here.
he Sakura (cherry blossom) spring is one of the world’s most stunning ‘natural’ wonders, as blankets of iconic pale pink flowers fleetingly transform Japan’s towns, cities and countryside. This Easter, presenters Chris Packham, Michaela Strachan and James Wong, will join hundreds of thousands of other travellers visiting Japan to indulge in ‘Hanami,’ or the national tradition of ‘flower watching’. As each follows their own Sakura stories, the trio will learn that the arrival of the blossom is not just a spectacle of nature. It has become one of Japan’s most important cultural moments, influencing the economy, tourism, and family tradition. The presenters will look back to the Sakura’s ancient origins and how the arrival of the blossom represented the fleeting beauty of nature and also human life.
For Chris Packham – the Sakura will be a chance to explore the wildlife that lives in harmony with the blossom;
· The Japanese white-eye has been perfectly designed to enjoy the cherry blossom and can be seen everywhere at this time of year. Chris goes in search of this tiny bird to explain just why it can live in such harmony with the Sakura.
· And with Hanami parties in full swing, he’ll encounter the illusive urban nightlife living in the city suburbs. These are the raccoon dogs, or Tanuki – who come out to feed on the party scraps.
For ethnobotanist James Wong, the trip is a chance to look at the amazing phenomenon of the trees themselves. James will:
· Learn that the most popular Sakura is unable to fertilise future generations of trees so all the blossom orchards are manmade.
· Travelling to Mount Yoshino, where 30,000 trees delight the annual visitors, James joins the group of dedicated Sakura gardeners who ensure the survival of the spectacle by planting new trees every year.
· And in Kyoto he meets one of the revered ‘Sakura’ doctors who dedicate their lives to keeping the trees healthy.
For Michaela Strachan, she will:
· Start in Tokyo where she meets the blossom bees. Pesticides are banned in the city, so the bees have access to clean nectar sources – particularly the Sakura.
· And with Hanami at the heart of the season, Michaela and Chris join revelers in one of Kyoto’s large parks to discover how different generations celebrate the Sakura, including the Japanese students celebrating the season in their own way.
This BBC Two one-hour “as-live” special will celebrate this spring blossom time, from the frenetic energy and consumerism of the city, to moments of tranquillity and serene beauty in the spiritual mountains of Yoshino as James Wong visits the ‘Pink Mountain’ – reputedly the best place in the world to see cherry blossom.
Japan is due to host two sporting ‘mega-events’ in the next few years: The Rugby World Cup 2019 and The Summer Olympics, Tokyo 2020.
The build up to these events provides an opportunity to reflect on the past, present and future role of sport as an opportunity for diplomacy. This symposium, organised by the Japan Foundation London, the Japan Sport Council London and SOAS Japan Research Centre, focuses on mega-sporting events as a public diplomatic platform, and how they create legacies for the global community.
Tetsuya Kimura ( Director-General, Japan Sports Agency)
Richard Caborn (former Minister of Sport 2001-7)
Dr Helen Macnaughtan (Chair, SOAS Japan Research Centre)
Dr J Simon Rofe (SOAS University of London)
Organisers: Japan Foundation London, Japan Sport Council London and SOAS Japan Research Centre
The event is also supported by JSPS London and is followed by a reception sponsored by Sake Samurai.
The event is free and open to the public but registration is essential to guarantee a place.
For further details and to view the event programme please visit the SOAS website: https://www.soas.ac.uk/jrc/events/15may2017-sport-and-diplomacy-past-reflections-and-looking-toward-2020.html
Image: Courtesy of the Japan Sport Council
Okinawa Day is back at Spitalfields this year for a day of Okinawan folk & classical music, Eisa dancing, Karate, food, drinks & much more! Come along with your friends & families, admission is free!
When: Saturday 24th June 2017
Where: Spitalfields, London E1 6AA
What goes with a summer Friday night in London better than saying cheers with friends? Saying cheers with a glass of sake and enjoying the amazing offerings of Urban Food Fest! The Kampai Social is part of the larger HYPER JAPAN event, and allows you not only access to HYPER JAPAN itself (a £15 value) but also to Urban Food Fest, not to mention…
Join the special HYPER JAPAN after work crew and we’ll throw in a ticket to the Sake Experience – Europe’s largest public tasting event for sake.(also a £15 value). We’ve gathered ten breweries from across Japan, boasting a selection of over two dozen sakes for you to sample, and also invited the master brewers behind these creations. You’ll have the rare chance to speak directly with these artisans, learning more about their offerings and craft. To add to the experience further, attendees will be able to vote for their favourite, with all those taking part eligible for a draw to win fabulous prizes. Treat yo’self!
Urban Food Fest will be bringing a decadent selection of international cuisine to spice up the evening’s offerings. See our page for more info!
London’s very own and much loved festival of Japanese culture – Japan Matsuri – returns this year on Sunday 24th September to Trafalgar Square, one of the capital’s most famous landmarks. Now in its 9th year and a regular fixture in the London calendar, this energetic annual event brings people together to enjoy an amazing day of Japanese food, music, dance and so much more. It’s a firm family favourite attracting large numbers of children and young people. And it’s absolutely free!
Japan Matsuri is a charity and organized by volunteers from the Japan Association in the UK, the Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the UK, the Japan Society and the Nippon Club. Additionally it receives support from the Embassy of Japan in the UK and the Japan Foundation and is also supported by the Mayor of London and Westminster City Council.
The Experience Japan Exhibition aims to introduce the growing range of study and research opportunities available in Japan.
This year, 14 of Japan’s leading universities will be attending to provide information on degree programmes taught entirely in English, as well as on the research opportunities, summer courses and other options open to international students. There will also be a chance to find out about the variety of scholarships and research funding available to enable you to take advantage of these learning opportunities.
The seminar line-up offers participants the chance to learn about the basics of life in Japan and hear directly from people with experience of studying and researching there. Guest speakers will also be delivering presentations that provide insights into Japanese language and popular culture, and there will be a special seminar on the ever-popular Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Programme.
So come along and find your way to Japan – the experience of a lifetime awaits!
Online registration is recommended but not required. Pre-register via the link below to receive a special gift on the day of the exhibition.
Those who pre-register can also enter a prize draw for the chance to win a London-Tokyo return flight ticket courtesy of Japan Airlines.
Secrets and Lies in Japanese Cinema
Everybody has once told a lie or kept something hidden from others. Whether for good intentions or otherwise, it is a fundamental and intriguing aspect of human nature which has provided inspiration to countless storytellers and filmmakers.
With diverse cinematic voices, The Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme 2018 features some of the best examples of cinema from Japan and will look at how the country’s filmmakers have been drawn to portraying the “(un)true” colours of human nature. The twists and turns of life portrayed in the programme are at times heart-rending, at other times hilarious, but always enthralling.
The Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme 2018 is programmed and produced by Junko Takekawa, Paul Graham, Yuri Kubota and coordinated by Darian De La Cruz and Melisha Kontemeniotis. Special thanks to Kiyomi Nakazaki, Dr Alexander Jacoby and Jasper Sharp.
3 leading UK based Japanese makers come together to present TUKURU at the Sway Gallery exclusively for Clerkenwell Design Week 2018.
Ceramics Ikuko Iwamoto MA RCA, metalsmith Kei Tominaga MA & mix media artist Naori Priestly MA RCA will be presenting collections and their interpretation of TUKURU – the Japanese word for Create.
Ikuko Iwamoto MA RCA (Ceramics)
‘TUKURU means to create, however, it could have broader translations including to cook, to brew, to grow, etc. (All depends on the Chinese letters you apply with it). My background is a farmer who creates crops. My new collection will incorporate old everyday farming tools into my sculptures’.
Kei Tominaga MA (Metalsmith)
When the hands are working, shapes always appear so that “Creating” means “Moving hands” for me. Growing up I was immersed in the environment where always some materials and creating around in my childhood since my mother’s dressmaking work. I was watching how the materials turn into the things/ product and playing with the pieces of material like paper, cloth, string which I can find easily. I still use everyday material as motifs as it’s concept or texture, reflecting those ideas on the metal and creating works by my hands.
Naori Priestly MA RCA (Mixed Media Artist)
My approach for this group show focuses on a rather cynical way. Tukuru is also meaning of ‘pretend something’. In English, many words feature a silent/magic ‘e’. Likewise, in Japanese some typographic symbols pretend to be words and work like word in the sentence. She has been curious about this creature like symbols.
Two these makers will be demonstrating their making skills throughout CDW (please see essential information for event times). This will be one of the very few showcases to display contemporary high-end craft during CDW 2018. All work is available to purchase and welcome bespoke commissions.
TUKURU at Clerkenwell Design Week 2018
Dates: 22-24 May: 11:00am – 19:00pm daily
Location: Sway Gallery, 70-72 Old St, London EC1V 9AN
Press Brunch: Tuesday 22 May. 11am – 1pm
**An exclusive viewing of TUKURU and chance for you to meet all three makers over Japanese tea and nibbles. RSVP essential via: email@example.com**
Private view: Tuesday 22 May. Sake-based cocktail served between 18:00pm – 20:30pm
Drinks receptions: Wednesday 23 May 18:00pm – 20:30pm
Maker demonstrations – Free entry
22 May 4pm to 5pm // Naori Priestly
Modular Origami demonstration
Naori Priestly will demonstrate using paper folding techniques to make 3D structure with paper.
23 May 3.30 pm to 4.30 pm // Ikuko Iwamoto
The Dotty-decoration by Ikuko Iwamoto
Ikuko Iwamoto will decorate the cup by applying dots with syringe-like tool with porcelain slip.
About Clerkenwell Design Week
This May will see the ninth edition of Clerkenwell Design Week (CDW) take place from May 22-24th 2018. As the annual focus for London’s leading design district, the festival programme has been created to reflect the unique nature of this vibrant London hub which is home to a plethora of creative businesses, design consultancies, showrooms and architectural practices. 2018 will again play host to hundreds of design-led fringe events, showroom presentations, workshops, talks and public-facing installations. Activities will run over three days and follow a
distinct trail north to south from Spa Fields down to Farringdon.
Press Contact (for images and invitations):
Future Icons // www.futureicons.co.uk
+44 (0) 7838102031