Archive for the ‘Japan’ Category

Playing on Fire


Yamashita Yosuke playing at a beach in Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan. Yamashita Yosuke, a Japanese pianist, recently played an event featuring a piano on fire, on the beach.  He played for 10 minutes until the piano fell silent. The idea and images were beautiful.  Check it out here. Advertisements

Miriam Silverberg, whose new book,  Erotic Grotesque Nonsense, I was looking forward to reading, died on March 16th.  She had suffered from Parkinsons.  James Fujii wrote this about her on H-NET: After a long bout with illness, Miriam Rom Silverberg passed away in the early hours of Sunday, March 16, 2008. Miriam spent her formative […]

Over the weekend, I went to the Shinjo Ito show, which is traveling from Japan and currently on view at Milk Gallery in Chelsea. You can find info on the exhibit here. I had seen the posters in subway stations, a golden Buddha shining in the darkness of the dank New York subway and was […]

John Nathan John Nathan will be speaking at Japan Society in New York City soon, promoting his new book. I found this old video featuring John Nathan on the Charlie Rose program. The video was from 2004, and celebrated the 150 year anniversary since Commodore Perry landed in Japan, forcing it open. Ian Buruma appears […]

Shimaoka Tatsuzo died at the age of 88.  The New York Times had his obituary.  He was designated a national living treasure by the Japanese government in 1996.  A potter heavily influenced by the mingei or folk arts movement, it was a visit to the Japan Folk Crafts Museum in 1938 that inspired him to […]

Kogyaru Moms?!


Typical gyarus in Shibuya. An interesting article in the Japan Times writes about what happens to kogyaru (or sometimes kogal) after the party ends– basically when they become mothers.  Not surprisingly, the picture isn’t pretty. If you’re wondering what a kogyaru is, see this Wikipedia article exhaustively discussing this interesting Japanese subculture.  You can also […]

Scan of Japanese menu courtesy and Google image search. has a funny article (with pic and video) of the new winter special pizza by Domino’s in Japan. Although some were commenting on how gross it looked, I got used to strange Japanese pizza (tuna, mayonaise, and corn) and came to love it. Now, […]

Japan began a program on November 15th of fingerprinting and photographing all foreign visitors to Japan, including foreign residents of Japan, every time they enter the country. The measures were enacted supposedly for anti-terrorism reasons, but the New York Times writes that the decision could affect businesses if  companies find the regulations prohibitive and businessmen […]

Muji in NYC!


Muji’s famous “cardboard” speakers. Japanese design superstore Muji, following in the footsteps of UNIQLO, finally opened its first US store in New York City, right on Broadway in Soho. Before you could only buy crappy and overpriced stationery in the basement of the Soho MOMA Design Store, and despite Muji having stores in other countries […]

My favorite holiday, Halloween, is fast approaching and I’m working on my costume this year. It will be modeled on a Japanese idea for evading criminals which I read about in the New York Times– I’ll be a Japanese vending machine! But I digress… People often ask do Japanese celebrate Halloween? No. But it is […]