In 2013, Mr. One Million, Hyakumansan, upset the residents of Ishikawa prefecture, whom he was supposed to represent, by being too ugly. Overdesigned. Not cute enough. Nearly a decade later, he’s still standing as the mascot of Ishikawa but what was all that hullabaloo about? Is he really as messy as they said he was? […]
Read More The Curious Case of Hyakumansan
Kanazawa, aside from being a historical wonderland to rival Kyoto, is also the home of the gold leaf industry in Japan. Take a walk with me through a golden garden, won’t you?
Read More Gold Leaf of Kanazawa
A whole land dedicated to Daruma? Yes, yes there is! Of course, I had to go out to Shirakawa in Fukushima to check out this newly built establishment!
Read More Daruma Land
Did you know there are three big Kimono styles in Japan? The first, of course, is the old capital of Kyoto, and the second is the new capital of Tokyo. What is the third? Kanazawa, the hidden gem on the northern coast! They are renowned for their kimono painting technique, Kaga-Yuzen, and we got to […]
Read More Kaga-Yuzen: Kimono Painting in Kanazawa
Okinawa has a rich and unique island culture that makes it stand apart from other prefectures in Japan. Once its own kingdom, it brought many of its cultures and crafts into the Japanese consciousness, including its own styles of dyeing cloths known as Bingata.
Read More Bingata: Okinawan Coral Prints
Fall brings about many changes in Japan: The changing of leaves, cozy clothing, and some pretty great cultural activities. I was lucky enough to get the opportunity to have a unique cultural experience: Traditional Noh and Kyogen performances as they were hundreds of years ago on an outside stage.
Read More Noh and Kyogen at Mount Oyama
Tanabata can fall on one of two sets of dates: Either July 7th or August 7th. One or the other depends on if you follow the solar calendar or the lunar festival. In the northern part of the main island of Japan, an area called Tohoku, there are three famous summer festivals that fall around […]
Read More Sendai Tanabata Festival
Last week, we explored the upper floors of TeamLab Borderless at the Mori Building Digital Art Museum in Odaiba, Tokyo. This week, we’ll take a gander at all the other exhibits they have hiding in the labyrinth of the first floor. Most are interactive, some are merely for spectating, but all have something visually arresting […]
Read More TeamLab: Borderless – Forest of Flowers and People and Other Exhibits
If you follow Japan at all on social media, chances are you’ve seen pictures of exquisite projection mapping displays in a darkened warehouse. This is a special exhibit by the art team TeamLab at the Mori Building Digital Art Museum. It is a large area with expansive displays that are a treat for the senses. […]
Read More TeamLab: Borderless – Athletic Forest and En Tea House
Japan has no shortage of castles sprinkled about the country. While visiting Nagoya for a conference, I was able to stop by the local castle, as it was only about a 15-minute walk from my hotel. Each castle seems to have its own unique attribute that pulls in tourists, and for Nagoya, it definitely was […]
Read More Nagoya Castle