Shoso-in: Treasure House Of Art And History

SHOSO-IN SPECIAL / Shoso-in: Treasure house of art and history

The Yomiuri ShimbunShoso-in was originally a repository of the Todaiji temple in Nara.

The history of its treasures began when items related to Emperor Shomu (701-756) were stored there. After the emperor died, his grieving widow Empress Komyo (701-760) dedicated hundreds of objects used by the emperor to the statue of the Great Buddha at the temple.

Missing Sesshu Painting Found After 84 Years

Missing Sesshu painting found after 84 years

A work by 15th-century ink wash painter Sesshu that had been missing for 84 years has been found.

The landscape, set in a roughly 30-by-30-centimeter fan-shaped framework, is done in the style of Chinese Southern Song Dynasty painter Xia Gui.

1 Billion Yen's Worth Of Hokusai Donated To Museum

1 billion yen's worth of Hokusai donated to museum

MATSUE--A scholar battling illness has donated 1,000 or so works by the celebrated painter Katsushika Hokusai, believed to be worth more than 1 billion yen ($9.14 million), to a museum here.

The Shimane Art Museum in the capital of Shimane Prefecture said Aug. 22 that the collection by Seiji Nagata comprehensively represents the seven decades of Hokusai (1760-1849) as an artist.

A Haunting Find: Lost Masterpiece Of Famous Ghost On Show Again

A haunting find: Lost masterpiece of famous ghost on show again

A scroll painting of a famous ghost by a Japanese master that was thought lost in a fire nearly a century ago was found by a sharp-eyed art dealer in Tokyo.

The painting by Kiyokata Kaburaki (1878-1972) portrays Okiku, the main character in a popular horror story, "Sarayashiki" (The plate mansion).

Bamboo Craft's Journey To Art Form

Bamboo craft's journey to art form

The Associated PressNEW YORK (AP) — Bamboo is getting attention these days as a versatile and sustainable material for housewares, so the timing is good for a Metropolitan Museum of Art exhibit that explores Japan's ancient craft of basketry.

"Japanese Bamboo Art: The Abbey Collection" is devoted to masterworks, including a half dozen works by two artists designated as living national treasures. To highlight the works' virtuosity and context, they have been displayed alongside paintings, ceramics, bronzes, kimono and other pieces from different genres.

Utada Hikaru Releases Forevermore Cover Art

Utada Hikaru Releases Forevermore Cover ArtOn July 10, Utada Hikaru released her summer single "Oozora de Dakishimete" as well as the cover art for her next single "Forevermore".
"Oozora de Dakishimete" was digitally released globally on July 10. The song hit #1 on iTunes in Japan upon its release, and has charted within the top 10 of various other countries.

The Met Museum To Exhibit Japanese Bamboo Art

The Met Museum to exhibit Japanese bamboo art

The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York held a preview of an exhibition of Japanese bamboo art on Monday.

The special exhibition that opens on Tuesday showcases more than 90 items, including everyday utensils, flower baskets and contemporary artworks.

Perverted Reality: Women Outpace Men At 'love Doll' Exhibit

Perverted reality: Women outpace men at 'love doll' exhibit

Admirers at a "love doll" exhibition in Tokyo are a far cry from the stereotypical image of an introverted pervert fulfilling his dark fantasies with an anatomically correct plastic companion in his lonely apartment.

Visitors at the venue can be heard praising the beauty and life-like appearances of what are essentially toys used by men for simulated sexual acts. These accolades often come from women.

Kanta On Manga / A Welfare Caseworker's Lot Is Not A Happy One

KANTA ON MANGA / A welfare caseworker's lot is not a happy one


In January, it became a social issue that public workers serving as caseworkers to help people in need in a city in Kanagawa Prefecture had worn jackets with a logo, in romaji, stating "HOGO NAMENNA" (Don’t abuse the public welfare benefits). Their backs bore English sentences that included "THEY ARE DREGS!" which indicated that some people illegally receive welfare benefits. The city mayor officially apologized, saying, "These expressions are inappropriate." The public criticism is not surprising, as some caseworkers wore these jackets when visiting families on welfare benefits.

New Theater Provides Immersive Experience

New theater provides immersive experienceIHI Stage Around Tokyo in Toyosu, Tokyo, is only the second theater in the world with a revolving seating area. It opened in late March with a popular play by the Gekidan Shinkansen theater company, and I took in a show to see what all the fuss was about.

The seating in the auditorium began moving as soon as the performance started. The action-packed period fantasy, "Dokurojo no Shichinin: Season Hana," is a new version of "Dokurojo no Shichinin" (Seven Souls In The Skull Castle), depicting a pair of wandering samurai (played by Shun Oguri and Koji Yamamoto) who set out to fight against the tyrannical lord of Dokurojo, a fictitious castle in the Kanto region during the Sengoku warring states period in the 16th century.

Kanta On Manga / Weird Science Manga Highlights 'umwelt'

KANTA ON MANGA / Weird science manga highlights 'Umwelt'

Rapid progress is being made in the field of genome editing, an advanced type of genetic engineering that involves directly rewriting genes. A technology called CRISPR-Cas9, which was introduced in 2012, is said to be able to edit gene information as simply as carrying out a cut and paste command on a computer, and there are hopes that the technology could lead to cures for hereditary diseases.

At the same time, some have said the ability to freely modify the genes of fertilized eggs is moving us closer to creating "designer babies." This week’s manga, "Designs," presents a world in the not-too-distant future where genetic technology has advanced even further and with more sinister results.

Early-onset Dementia Patients Tackle Symptoms Through 'clinical Art'

Early-onset dementia patients tackle symptoms through 'clinical art'

Early-onset dementia patients are facing their symptoms head-on through a "clinical art" program to stimulate their brains at the Nagisa Warakuen facility for the elderly in Tokyo's Edogawa Ward.

"Ashitaba Art" is a monthly program that the facility began holding roughly two years ago that challenges dementia patients who began developing symptoms before the age of 65 to maintain their current mental functions through creating works of art.