Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Kochi Performing Arts Festival2017 Artist in Residence2017&Performance - Papermoon Puppet Theatre 'Translucence'(Indonesia)

'Men of The Sea', by Papermoon Puppet Theatre
   Papermoon Puppet Theatre from Indonesia returns to the Museum of Art, Kochi after the first residency program in 2015. They will create and present a new work incorporating Tosa-original Washi paper in collaboration with Kochi-based local artists. They will entertain you with the hand-made puppets, dance and live music.

Monday, April 17, 2017

“Let’s get to know Japan!” ~Tosa Knife Crafting and Nankoku City Bus Tour~

   On May 27th, The Nankoku City International Association (NIA) is hosting a hands-on Tosa knife crafting workshop, and a bus tour visiting a horticultural park and Kokubunji temple, which is quite lively in the current pilgrimage season.
   Please apply after checking the itinerary and information below. The deadline for applications is May 15th.
   Additionally, participants are limited to persons of foreign nationality (they will have priority) and NIA members.
Event Details

5/27/2017 (Sat.)
Meeting Places and Departure Times:
8:20 at the Nankoku City Office, 8:30 at the Gomen JR station

Ending Location and Time (planned):
14:50 at the Gomen JR station, 15:00 at the Nankoku City Office

Workshop and Tour Locations:
Toyokuni Ltd. in Kameiwa, Nankoku City (knife crafting), Nishijima Horticultural Park, Kokubunji Temple

Participation Fee:
¥4,000 (blade and whetstone included, lunch not included)
Nishijima Horticultural Park. You may bring a lunch or buy one at the park.

Accident insurance coverage (date of birth required)
Number of Participants:

Application & Inquiry:
Ms. Nagano, NIA

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Architecture that co-exists with nature / Architect : Kengo Kuma

   Yusuhara, known as the “Kumo-no-Ue-no-Machi” (lit. “Town above the clouds”), has four buildings designed by world famous architect Kengo Kuma (as of March 2017). The buildings are characteristic in that they are built lavishly with wood from Yusuhara, and they harmonize well with the surrounding nature.

   The reason why Kengo Kuma came to design buildings in Yusuhara lies in Yusuhara-za, the only wooden theater house in Kochi. It is said that he was impressed by the efforts to preserve Yusuhara-za at the time, and he got interested in wooden architecture. He received a request from the town of Yusuhara, and starting with “Kumo-no-Ue-no-Hotel”, he built “Yusuhara Town Hall”, “Machinoeki Yusuhara”, and “Yusuhara Wooden Bridge Museum”. Also, Yusuhara Town Library and Welfare Facility are in the process of being built now.
Kumo-no-Ue-no-Hotel (Location: Tarogawa 3799-3)
   The rounded roof is constructed in the image of an airplane’s wing, and the design uses the concept of fusing together glass, wood, and water. The restaurant interior is made from wood as well, and it creates a comforting atmosphere. There is a Canadian staff member who can handle your requests in English as well as Japanese.

Makino Museum of Plants & People / Architect: Hiroshi Naito

Under the c-shaped overhang which stretches out gracefully
How Hiroshi Naito came to design the building
   This museum is dedicated to Dr. Tomitaro Makino, the plant scientist from Kochi who is often referred to as the “Father of Japanese Botany”. Located in Godaisan, Kochi City, the museum was built within the Makino Botanical Garden, and it is comprised of a main building and an exhibition hall.

Kochi Station / Architect: Hiroshi Naito

Kochi Station (South exit)
   JR Kochi station looks like an ordinary train station at first glance, but I was surprised to hear that the famous architect Hiroshi Naito designed it. The first thing you see when getting off from the streetcar / tram at Kochi station is the south side of the train station. It is made from v-shaped steel frames. The station is sometimes referred to as “whale dome” because of the way it looks like whale bones.

Kochi Life Q&A : Ohanami

   For Japanese people, Ohanami (lit. flower viewing) is associated with cherry blossoms. Let’s enjoy the Japanese culture of Ohanami this spring!
Q: When did the culture of Ohanami start?
A: The origin of Ohanami is said to have started in the Nara period (710-794 A.D.) when the imperial family went to view the plum blossom which had been introduced from China. In the Heian period (794-1185 A.D.) cherry blossoms started to become more popular than plum blossoms, and many poems about cherry blossoms remain from this era. It seems that as time passed, this custom spread to the warriors and the common people.