Q&A with Princess Mako and Kei Komuro: Dating, Proposal, Emperor’s Blessing

  (First of 2 parts)   On September 3, Princess Mako, eldest daughter of Prince Akishino, gave a press conference at Akasaka Goyochi in Tokyo with her fiancé Kei Komuro, 25, her former classmate at International Christian University.   In that public appearance together, she famously said his smile was “as bright as the sunlight,” while […]

2017 Præmium Imperiale International Arts Awards Winners Announced in New York

The Japan Art Association on Tuesday, September 12, formally announced 5 recipients of the 29th prestigious Præmium Imperiale International Arts Awards at the Juilliard School in New York City. The awardees for 2017 are: *Dancer and choreographer Mikhail Baryshnikov *Afro-Pop superstar Youssou N’Dour *Architect Rafael Moneo *Visual artist Shirin Neshat *Visual artist El Anatsui Each […]

Kuniyoshi’s Landscapes and Warrior Images, and Why They Are Highly-Valued Today

    Related story: Utagawa Kuniyoshi: The Ukiyo-e Artist You Should Know   The ukiyo-e artist Utagawa Kuniyoshi truly illustrated all kinds of topics, working in a wide range of genres. His works include images of warriors, beautiful women, actors, and landscapes inspired by Western painting. These landscapes, of which he did only a few, […]

‘Fear’ in Many Forms: Exhibit Based on ‘Kowai-e’ Series Comes to Kobe and Tokyo

  Ghosts, devils, hell, monsters, murders, and execution. These dark, challenging themes are at the heart of the recently opened Fear in Painting exhibition, housed in the sublimely elegant, Tadao Ando-designed Hyogo Prefecture Museum of Art in Kobe.       Based on the popular Kowai-e books series first published 10 years ago, the exhibition […]

Kei Komuro on Princess Mako: ‘She watches over me as quietly as the moon’

  On September 3, Princess Mako, the eldest daughter of Prince Akishino-no-miya and Princess Kiko, and Kei Komuro, 25, announced their engagement in a press conference that lasted approximately 13 minutes.     The affianced pair said that they were like “the sun and the moon,” and exchanged frequent glances while opening up about how […]

Editorial: Pressure on Cambridge University Means China Threatens Academic Freedom

  Approximately 300 articles in the Chinese studies journal China Quarterly, which the Cambridge University Press publishes in Britain, were made temporarily unavailable in China.   Articles that were made unavailable are on issues such as the June 1989 Tienanmen Square protests and Taiwan independence. All the articles share the theme of suppression of freedom […]

Getting Over a Hot Summer by Using the Japanese Traditional Ways; Be Fashionable at the Same Time

  As if the Japanese summer is not hot enough, it seems to be getting hotter each year. For centuries, though, the Japanese people knew just exactly how to survive the hot weather—and in fashionable ways at that.   One of the most famous summer symbols, the “goldfish” were known from Muromachi era, which was […]