OUR KYOTO

Kyoto’s Forgotten Era

October 15, 2011

A century ago Kyoto was “The city that does everything first.” Today it is “the ancient capital” and “the city of temples and shrines.” Kyoto’s development of leading-edge technology however, continues today…

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A Festival of Ages

October 15, 2011

Imagine Kyoto in the year 1868… To symbolise the new dawn it had been decided the emperor should move his capital to Tokyo. When the day of his departure came, thousands of citizens lined the streets, many distraught and in tears.

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Seeing the Forest and the Trees

October 13, 2011

“In Japan, divinities might be of mountain, sea, or river. People find divinities in nature. This religious faith still exists…”

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Mediating between Nature and Imagination: Sudo Hisao

October 7, 2011

Sudo Hisao’s latest sculpture, not yet dry, stands in his ceramic studio: a giant acorn, bursting with life, erotic tip pointing upwards…

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Gion Geisha: Interview with Yoshida Teruko

September 15, 2011

Yoshida Teruko is a former geiko (often called geisha outside of Kyoto). She is the proprietor of a bar in the Gion district whose clientele includes corporate leaders from Kyoto, Tokyo and other countries.

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Furuhashi Teiji and Dumb Type

August 15, 2011

“It’s more difficult to do creative theater in Tokyo. There is less pressure in Kyoto so we can be more free, more adventurous. Kyoto people are more open to something experimental…”

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Katsura Kan: Butoh Dancer

August 13, 2011

At 36, Kyoto-born butoh dancer and choreographer Katsura Kan has survived as an independent dancer, working outside the established butoh companies…

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Sano Toemon: Gardener

August 11, 2011

In the center of Maruyama Park there is a very large cherry tree… It was cultivated by the grandfather of Sano Tōemon, the sixteenth generation of a line of Sagano gardeners.

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Nishikawa Senrei: Nihon Buyo

July 26, 2011

“You have to tear down the old completely sometimes to build the new in the spirit of the old. When I revive a piece, everything changes. Even if the performers are all the same, we’ve grown, so through repetition the piece will change.”

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Nishijin Harmonies

July 8, 2011

“I’ve always been intrigued by mastery on every level — mastery of one’s skills to use as a focus to purify oneself and to live well, to live happily, and to feel that one is living in a congruent and meaningful form.”

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Parabolic Paintings at Kiyomizudera

June 25, 2011

ART
BY BRIAN WILLIAMS

A World Heritage site, Kiyomizu is the most visited destination in Japan… It was at this matchless and uniquely sited treasure that, on May 14th, 2011, I was given the literally unprecedented privilege of exhibiting my art — debuting my new genre of painting which I call “parabolic painting,” to a one-evening-only gathering of well over two thousand people…

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Behind the Brocade Curtain

June 24, 2011

In the early 1990s I unwittingly moved into a Gion Festival neighborhood…One day I literally stumbled upon the festival’s gigantic floats, some as high as downtown buildings, and marveled at their exquisite adornments of exotic textiles and carvings. I didn’t know what I was looking at, but it blew my mind.

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On Genji Monogatari: A Conversation with Setouchi Jakucho

April 16, 2011

“I started translating The Tale of Genji after turning seventy, though I had well prepared to start for many years by then…”

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The Path to Honen-in

April 15, 2011

For a man who wears so many caps, the shaven-headed priest exudes a genial calm. He talks openly and from the heart; here is none of the closed manner for which Kyoto is famous.

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

KJ 92: Devotion