Japanese Culture – The Amazing Food of Japan

The food of Japan benefits from many influences, including nearby countries such as China, as well as the huge variety of food available at its doorstep. For someone new to Japanese culture it might appear confusing, and even for someone familiar with Japanese food there are always surprises. So, lets investigate some of the variety […]

World heritage candidate for 2017 to be known by July

From Japan Times http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2015/04/20/national/world-heritage-candidate-for-2017-to-be-known-by-july/#.VTiZkpNG6J8 A government panel said Monday it will pick a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site candidate to promote for 2017 by the end of July. The panel has four candidates, including Jomon archaeological sites in Hokkaido, northern Tohoku and other regions, and the Sado complex of heritage mines, which are primarily gold […]

Japanese Traditions – The Story of the Monster Tengu (天狗)

Tengu is an imaginary being, a type of monster that lives deep in the mountains. It has an appearance similar to that of a human being, but it has a red face with a strange, big nose. Tengu have Jintsuriki (supernatural powers), as well as wings which allow them to fly the sky. In the […]

Hanami in Japan – Cherry Blossoms and Sake!

By Weini Liao Hanami, also known as flower viewing, is a traditional Japanese custom. The flower here usually means sakura or cherry blossoms in English. Sakura is national flower in Japan and is regarded as the symbol of Japanese spirit: wither or die at the peak moment of one’s life. Hanami originated from the entertainment […]

A Prince’s Trip to Japan – A Royal Visit

Last week Prince William of the UK arrived in Japan for a four day trip, and it is quite impressive what a prince can fit in his timetable during such a short time! On the first day of his Japan tour Prince William went to the Nakajima Tea House, this was built 350 years ago […]

A Very Merry Fried Chicken Christmas

By Atsuka Fukaya You may have found the title of this article quite puzzling, which is no surprise. In how many countries would you find a combination of the words Christmas and fried chicken? ‘Surely, you mean turkey?’ is something you might be thinking. Well, I am afraid that I don’t mean that, because I […]

Overview of 2014 Life – Cool Japan!

This year we decided to create a new section which we entitled ‘Life,’ we saw this as an opportunity to go a little outside of Japanese crafts and culture and introduce exciting talent in many different creative fields. This experiment seems to have been a success, we have met lots of interesting people, and quite […]

Overview of 2014 Culture – The Best of Japan!

Over the past year we have introduced a lot of Japanese culture, but the truth is that there is still so much more to introduce, and even we are learning something new sometimes! We have really enjoyed working hard to show the best of Japan, and in 2015 we aim to continue doing this. So […]

Shamisen – The Famous Instrument of Japan

By Ramata Cisse When you think of traditional Japanese music, two instruments come to mind almost instantly: the taiko drum, and the shamisen. In terms of sound, art and craft, history and performance, both of these instruments are impressive in their own respects. Let’s take a look at the shamisen! Musique du Japon (musée Guimet) […]

An Interview with Mizuyo Yamashita – Ceramic Designer

Please introduce yourself and your background. My name is Mizuyo Yamashita. I came to the UK in 2000 to study English and I started working in pottery as a hobby. Now I have a studio in East London. I was born and grew up in a big family of 7 including 2 brothers. My father […]

Anna Kozaki Interview Part Two – The Beautiful Art of Cookie Decoration

In October we had the pleasure of introducing a Japanese sweetsmaker in Tokyo, Anna Kozaki, her products had the benefit of not only looking beautiful, but also delicious. In our interview it was interesting to hear her opinions about sweets and Japan: Humility is a virtue in Japan, thus Japanese creations are usually simple, yet […]

Shogi – A Traditional Japanese Game with a History Covering 1000 Years

By Mike Sullivan. Shogi is a Japanese version of a kind of chess, if you are an avid fan of Japanese anime, manga or even film then you have most likely seen it being played. Although, it might not have been very clear how exactly one plays it! However, for foreigners it does help create […]