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image image 2020 Vision at KYOTOGRAPHIE, Kyoto's International Photography Festival
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Colin Smith
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Spring and autumn are all-too-brief seasons of joy anywhere in Japan, and maybe even more so in Kyoto, known for its brutal summers and winters. When the pandemic struck, KYOTOGRAPHIE 2020 was postponed from one pleasant time of year to another. On a beautiful, still-warm early fall day, it felt like there couldn't be a better time to hop on a rent-a-cycle and make the rounds of the city's international photography festival. In this eighth edition, with the theme of "Vision," works are exhibited at a splendid lineup of venues within the city limits: the 116-year-old former main building of the Kyoto Prefectural Office, galleries converted from a historic obi (kimono sash) workshop and a grand machiya townhouse, a row of humbler traditional townhouses in the city center, a Zen temple. more...

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image image Connection to the Earth: A New Art Space Envisioned by Architect Kengo Kuma
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James Lambiasi
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Tokorozawa Sakura Town is an exciting new facility located within the lush green environment of Tokorozawa, a city northwest of Tokyo in Saitama Prefecture, where architect Kengo Kuma has deftly knitted together community space, cultural facilities, and industry into one complex. Created through an initiative by the city and the Kadokawa Corporation titled Cool Japan Forest Vision, Sakura Town contains a wide array of functions, including a museum for anime, an anime-themed hotel, an event pavilion, a religious shrine, an office campus, book manufacturing facilities, retail shops, and restaurants. The crown jewel in this complex is the Kadokawa Culture Museum, a place where art, education, and the culture of books are integrated together. more...

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image image Vertical Landscapes: Shintaro Tanaka at the Ichihara Lakeside Museum
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Alan Gleason
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Shintaro Tanaka (1940-2019) burst upon Japan's art scene with a dramatic flourish at the tender age of 19. Born in Tokyo and raised in Ibaraki, a coastal prefecture to the northeast, he had just moved to the capital upon graduating from high school to pursue a career as an artist. He was still a complete unknown, without formal art training, when he won a prize at the Niki Exhibition in 1959 for an assemblage on canvas of debris that had drifted ashore in his seaside hometown of Hitachi. Critical acclaim followed, and the following year he was invited to join the Neo-Dadaism Organizers, a prominent avant-garde group founded by such luminaries as Genpei Akasegawa and Ushio Shinohara. Since then Tanaka has been a conspicuous presence, and influence, in Japan's contemporary art milieu. more...

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Recent Articles
FOCUS
2020 Vision at KYOTOGRAPHIE, Kyoto's International Photography Festival
Colin Smith
1 October 2020
FOCUS
Connection to the Earth: A New Art Space Envisioned by Architect Kengo Kuma
James Lambiasi
1 October 2020
HERE/THERE
Vertical Landscapes: Shintaro Tanaka at the Ichihara Lakeside Museum
Alan Gleason
1 October 2020
PICKS
MANGA ⇔ TOKYO
1 October 2020
FOCUS
Mastering Material and Fashioning Form: Bauhaus Comes to Japan
J.M. Hammond
1 September 2020
FOCUS
Inflated with the Spirit: Shiro Takahashi and the Kojiki
Jennifer Pastore
1 September 2020
HERE/THERE
The Art of Flux: Yuko Mohri at Ginza Sony Park
Alan Gleason
1 September 2020
PICKS
New Photographic Objects: The Materiality of Photo and Video
1 September 2020
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