OUR KYOTO

Small Buildings of Kyoto

Small Buildings of Kyoto

August 20, 2018

Small Buildings of Kyoto features 100 images of the quaint homes, businesses, workshops, as well as the occasional neighbourhood shrine and teahouse, that make up the fabric of Japan’s ancient capital.

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Ukishima Menu

Naoko Nakasone: Rejuvenating Spirit Food in Okinawa

August 19, 2018

“When people grew millet and grains, they didn’t need to scramble for food. Scrambling causes conflict, but in the absence of scrambling there was peace. For this reason, people really appreciated millet and served it to the gods as an expression of gratitude. “

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The English-speaking maiko Tomitsuyu of Tomikiku Teahouse, Gion Higashi

Living Kagai Culture: Field Notes from Kyoto’s “Flower Towns” 

August 17, 2018

The characters for kagai, Kyoto’s geiko districts, are often translated as ‘flower town’. Early in my research I began exploring this metaphor of a garden for the kagai’s cultural ecosystem. I soon discovered that, as in gardens, there are many layers, perspectives and influences.

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Stepping into Metamorphosis: The Shoes of Masaya Kushino

August 16, 2018

“My work is not just about the technical details of making a shoe, but an exploration of a fantasy, a story or something historical.”

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Chiemi Ogura bamboo craftswoman Kyoto photo by Irwin Wong

Chiemi Ogura: Bamboo Craftswoman

August 8, 2018

Chiemi weaves her intricate bamboo jewellery from her inner-west Kyoto home studio. Everything step is done by her and by hand, from cutting strips from raw, Kyoto-sourced stalks, to the final dying that washes the pieces in unique wine, turquoise, and emerald shades.

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Interview with Mitsuru Yokoyama, Tatami Artisan

July 18, 2018

“What I make, and all Japanese craftsman make ages with you. This is an investment in yourself, your life.”

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Ono Tadashi Coastal Motifs

KYOTOGRAPHIE Breaks New Ground

May 6, 2018

Kyotographie seems to be not merely bringing people to hidden or at least underutilized parts of Kyoto, but taking an active role in developing and revitalizing areas that are in dire need of a pick-me-up.

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1970s Kyoto

April 17, 2018

My roommate moonlights as a desk clerk at a guest house for foreigners and cuts most of his classes so he is seldom home. Most of the other boarders spend evenings in each other’s rooms screaming and jostling each other amid the familiar click and clatter of mahjong pieces being scrambled across a kotatsu table. This is there last fling at wasting time before the responsibilities of company employment and family beckon after graduation.

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Kurahashi Yoshio: Shakuhachi Master

November 1, 2017

As with other arts, shakuhachi’s “traditional” characteristics are constantly evolving. Hesitating to call himself traditional, sensei’s eyes light up when discussing how the music is changing.

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The Way of Food

August 10, 2017

Sen Sumiko (1920-2004) was the daughter of Yukosai, the ninth grand master of the Musanokoji branch of the three Sen families descended from Sen Rikyu and the mother of the present, eleventh grand master, Futessai Sōshu.

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No Translation Needed: KYOTOGRAPHIE 2017

May 3, 2017

The theme of KYOTOGRAPHIE 2016 is “Love,” a sentiment that is seemingly-universal yet highly-fraught in ways that vary widely from culture to culture. The festival’s organizers do not try to reconcile the differences but rather lay out the debate in spatial and visual terms.

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Vassal Beats Lord: Benkei and Yoshitsune in the Noh Play Ataka

March 8, 2017

Ataka reveals an aspect of unique Japanese spirituality. While it is a challenging performance for actors that requires subtle skills instructed orally by a master, the story structure involves a powerful psychodrama, and the roles and presentation evoke the audience’s emotions directly by the senses without depending completely on the words.

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Nama Chocolat Organic Teahouse

September 25, 2016

Nakanishi Hirofumi’s signature Sweet, Bitter and Matcha nama chocolates reflect modern tastes while paying tribute to Kyoto and its centuries-old artisan heritage.

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The Garden View

September 3, 2016

“My idea was to create photographs that explore this undefined border between private and public space by photographing the garden from deep inside the temple, balancing the areas of the tatami/ meditation space and the garden space equally in the image.”

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Dream Corridor

June 23, 2016

It all began in 1980, when I was 29, with the first of a series of vivid dreams. These occurred at dawn and continued through four summer mornings. I would find myself in an unfamiliar yet comfortable foreign land, with men, women and kids whom I cared for, yet could not upon waking recall ever having met…

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Kyoto Waters

November 6, 2015

Kyoto exists in layers of wildness and control; something built juxtaposed with something natural: one against the other, layered, intertwined, spiraled infinitely around the plain, a kind of DNA of place.

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Philosopher's Path Walk - Kyoto Journal

The Philosopher’s Walk: Nishida Kitaro’s Contemplative Route

October 15, 2015

Taking a daily walk helped him to switch his mood. He therefore began a daily routine, walking not only to the Silver Pavilion (Ginkakuji) but to the Honen’in and Nanzenji area, where the scenery is exquisite.

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More than a Rock: Photographing Kyoto’s Gardens

October 13, 2015

Love of rocks and gardens is what lured me to Japan. During an extended visit I photographed gardens in Kyoto every day for a year…

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Nishio Haruo: Thatcher

October 3, 2015

North of Kyoto city lie the satellite communities that make up the country town or cho known as Miyama — famed for its thatched houses, and home to thatcher Nishio Haruo…

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Kyoto’s Photo Family

September 26, 2015

With some 140 published books over four decades, Mizuno Katsuhiko has been influential in defining Kyoto’s natural beauty and stimulating Kyoto people’s pride in their city. As a child, Mizuno’s daughter Kayu accompanied him on many of his photo outings…

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Kyoto Excellence: Kyotographie International Photography Festival, 3rd Edition

April 23, 2015

APRIL 18-MAY10: Fourteen exhibitions on the theme of “TRIBE,” spread across Kyoto in brilliantly-coordinated venues ranging from a sub-temple of the city’s first Zen monastery to traditional inner-city machiya to a temporary Shigeru Ban cardboard-columned pavilion in front of City Hall to “anti-fashionista” Rei Kawakubo’s local Comme Des Garcons concept store.

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Before you go, be sure to check out our latest issue:

KJ 94: Inspired by Kyoto