Southern California and Arizona Area Cultural Calendar

2020/7/2

Virtual events available below.
Please note that events may be canceled or postponed and venues closed in coordination with the jurisdictions' official orders as countermeasures against COVID-19.


We continually update this calendar to include Japanese cultural events and activities in our jurisdiction. Please note, however, that events and organizations listed are not necessarily sponsored or endorsed by the Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles. For detailed information about events, please contact the organizer/s directly. If your organization would like an event posted to this calendar, please submit requests to the Japan Information and Culture Center, Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles for consideration.


Tel: (213) 617-6700 ext. 334
Fax: (213) 617-6728
Email
 

  1. Virtual Events
  2. Online Activities
  3. Arizona Area Events
  4. Southern California Area Events
  5. Arizona Area Ongoing Events
  6. Southern California Area Ongoing Events
  7. Special Events & Exhibitions at JICC

Virtual Events

 

Contemporary Dance Performance: Tokyo Dance Express

June-July, 2020
Japan Foundation Los Angeles
(323) 761-7510

During June and July, we will be delivering Japanese contemporary dance performance directly to your room virtually! Yo Nakamura, a marvelous contemporary dancer/choreographer, will be presenting a series of various approaches to your body and mind. In each performance, she will be doing different dances at different locations.

Her stage is full of freedom of expression, including some comical skits, emotional shouting, talking, drawing, and so much more. She boldly mixes her dynamic physical movements with a variety of pop music and other random forms of artwork.

Within her 10 year career, this is going to be her first full performance in front of American audiences! She has been invited to Europe and Asia several times, and once participated in Avril Lavigne’s music video.

We believe this is a rare opportunity for you to see a live performance by a Japanese artist as it has been months since most theaters in this country has been closed and people are unable to travel internationally.

During this challenging time, we are proud to virtually connect you and bring Yo to audiences here in the states. We really wanted to reach out to those who currently live far away from theaters. This is something you don’t want to miss. Please stay tuned!

Virtual Delicious Little Tokyo

Friday, June 26, 2020 - Sunday, July 26, 2020
Go Little Tokyo

Go Little Tokyo’s 5th Annual Delicious Little Tokyo transforms into a month-long virtual series of events for all to experience and celebrate authentic culinary experiences from one of Los Angeles’s most historic, iconic, and favorite foodie neighborhoods in the comfort of their own homes.

The virtual festival features interactive workshops, live chats with community leaders, giveaways and themed weeks with live videos spotlighting Little Tokyo businesses streamed every weekend beginning Friday, June 26 through Sunday, July 26 across Go Little Tokyo’s Instagram and Facebook platforms (@GoLittleTokyo).

Participate from anywhere in the world by attending virtual events, or if local to Los Angeles, ordering takeout or delivery from your favorite Little Tokyo restaurants.

Weekly Schedule:
6/26 - 6/27: Opening Weekend
6/29 - 7/5: Fish Week
7/6 - 7/12: Noodles Week
7/13 - 7/19: Green Week
7/20 - 7/26: Matcha Week

"Bridging the East and the West": House of Suntory Mini Master Class Series

Thursdays, July 2 & 23, August 13, 2020 | 5:00 p.m.
Japan America Society of Southern California

The Japan America Society of Southern California is proud to co-present with Suntory Holdings Limited, a 3-part mini master class series. Each webinar will feature a specific Suntory product and how it has supported Suntory’s mission to cultivate the cultures of Japan in the U.S.

Join us as we explore Suntory’s commitment to crafting their award-winning products. Hear from our experts Taki Nakatani and Jonathan Armstrong as they demonstrate the broad nature of some of Suntory’s most popular brands—the TOKI whisky, ROKU gin, and HAKU vodka.

Session Details
Part 1 - TOKI and the Art of Blending (July 2, 2020) at 5PM (PDT)
Introducing the history of Japanese whisky starting in 1923 to Suntory's latest product TOKI launched in 2016. We will talk about the ‘Art of Blending’ which is the true uniqueness of Suntory whisky and reflects the Japanese craftsmanship of pursuing perfection

Part 2 - ROKU and Seasonality (July 23, 2020) at 5PM (PDT)
ROKU Gin is truly a unique Gin using 6 Japanese Botanicals (Sakura Flower, Sakura Leaf, Sencha Tea, Gyokuro Tea, Yuzu, and Sansho Pepper) We will introduce stories of each of these botanicals.

Part 3 - HAKU and Design (August 13, 2020) at 5PM (PDT)
HAKU Vodka is made from 100% Japanese rice (General vodka are made from wheat or potato). We introduce the unique production process combining the traditional sake brewing method and latest distillation technologies.

Registration Fee
JAS Members - FREE
Non-Members - $25/ session
3 Webinar + JAS Annual Membership Bundle - $75
*Must be 21 years old or over to participate.
Register here.

Automotive Industry: Transformation and COVID-19 impact with briefing on COVID-19 and Economy of Japan

Friday, July 3, 2020 | 2:00 a.m. - 3:00 a.m. (A recorded video will also be provided to registered guests)
Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO)

The COVID-19 pandemic is causing massive disruptions to economies, businesses, and markets across the world. JETRO will therefore hold a series of webinars featuring the economic impacts of COVID-19 on the various sectors and industries of Japan. Join our webinars to stay informed about the current situation in Japan.

The focus of this fifth webinar will be on the status of Japan's automobile industries from both before and during the pandemic, and how the current crisis may impact its future. There will also be a brief discussion on how the general economy of Japan is being affected.
Register here.

Funimation Con 2020

Friday, July 3 - Saturday, July 4, 2020
Funimation

A two-day stream of cosplay meetups, industry panels, Q&A sessions, and more. Virtual attendees can register to attend some events for free! Highlights include airing of the 2019 Sacra Music festival and anime discussion panels about popular series such as Fruits Basket, One Piece, and Fire Force.

Anime Expo Lite

Friday, July 3, 2020 - Saturday, July 4, 2020
Anime Expo

Let's celebrate all things anime and Japanese pop culture together from home!
Join us July 3-4, 2020 for Anime Expo Lite - a FREE livestream event!

Music Mondays: Cheer up with "Virtual" Concert

Mondays, July 6, 13, 20, & 27, 2020 | 12:30 p.m. - 12:55 p.m.
Japan Foundation Los Angeles
(323) 761-7510

We want to bring some cheer to your lives by music! JFLA presents live music performances via JFLA Facebook LIVE! Every Monday at 12:30pm, talented performers will play their repertoire dedicated specially to you. Just go to JFLA's Facebook page. You don't need to have a Facebook account. Click the link, and the live video will show up on the main page. If you miss the video, you can still find it on JFLA's Facebook or JFLA's YouTube Channel.

Performer Schedule:
June 29: LAPRETE, formally known as, Aidan James
July 6: Nori Tani and Friends
July 13: Goh Kurosawa
July 20: Kenny Endo
July 27: Yusuke Morita (Live from Japan. Start at 6PM (PT))

View past live performances here.

Japan’s Energy and Sustainability Policy: The Post-Fukushima / Post-Corona Dilemma

Tuesday, July 7, 2020 | 4:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Japan Forum for Innovation and Technology

Japanese policy makers are in a bind: Japan needs affordable and reliable electric power, yet the country is still struggling to adjust to the end of its nuclear energy program. Today, Japan is a leading global emitter of greenhouse gasses. Its fleet of near-zero carbon electric generators are sitting idle, and renewable energy sources are not harnessed at levels seen elsewhere. Can Japan maintain global competitiveness and decarbonize at the same time? And what new threats and opportunities does the COVID pandemic introduce? Join two eminent experts on Japanese energy policy to learn more about the current policy discourse and outlook for Japan. Register here.

Virtual Bilingual Yoga

Wednesday, July 8 & 22, 2020 | 12:30 p.m. - 12:45 p.m.
Japan Foundation Los Angeles
(323) 761-7510

We would like to help during these trying times. Bilingual Yoga will be offered via JFLA Facebook LIVE! No need to change clothes or use a yoga mat; you will be seated in a chair at home and receive an instruction from our instructor in bilingual (English and Japanese). Easy and relaxed! Just go to JFLA's Facebook page. Stretch and refresh yourself with us at home! You don't need to have a Facebook account. The live video will show up on the main page. If you miss the video, you can still find it on our FaceBook or our YouTube channel.

Scholar Spotlight: Dr. Kit Brooks Lecture, Blood of a Nation: Tsukioka Yoshitoshi and History Painting

Thursday, July 9, 2020 | 4:00 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. PST
The Japan Information & Culture Center (JICC), Embassy of Japan in Washington D.C.

Tsukioka Yoshitoshi is most often remembered as an ukiyo-e artist who produced designs of blood, horror, and grotesquerie. And while this characterization does represent a portion of his oeuvre, Yoshitoshi was also engaged in a project to reimagine Japan’s past according to the prerogatives of a rapidly changing society.

Within Yoshitoshi’s lifetime, Japan shifted from a feudal system to one that emulated Western governmental and cultural institutions. At the same time, the last generations of ukiyo-e artists struggled to maintain relevance by reconceptualizing the heroic figures that appear in the popular “warrior prints” of the Edo period (1603–1868) into the new genre of “history paintings” befitting Meiji society (1868–1912).

In this lecture, we will examine how this process is distilled into a remarkable painting by Yoshitoshi, Fujiwara no Yasumasa Playing the Flute by Moonlight, as he sought to balance the models inherited from his teachers with the expectations of his new audiences. To register, click here.

JANM Digital Film Festival: Dodgers: Brotherhood of the Game Q&A

Friday, July 10, 2020 | 6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Japanese American National Museum
100 N Central Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 625-0414 | publicprograms@janm.org

From their original roots in Brooklyn to today’s home in Los Angeles, the Dodgers are trailblazers in the world of sports, on and off the field. The franchise is dedicated to supporting a culture of winning baseball, providing a first-class, family-friendly experience at Dodger Stadium and maintaining strong partnerships in the community.

In 2014, JANM collaborated with the Los Angeles Dodgers and Peter O’Malley and Family to present the Dodgers: Brotherhood of the Game exhibition, which explored the team’s storied past through four players and a Hall of Fame manager, each of whom made history in his own right: Jackie Robinson, Fernando Valenzuela, Chan Ho Park, Hideo Nomo, and Tommy Lasorda.

JANM’s Watase Media Arts Center produced five short documentaries in conjunction with the exhibition. Watch the films at janm.org/dodgers/videos or on JANM’s YouTube channel, then join the exhibition’s co-curators—Dodgers’ team historian Mark Langill and Koji Steven Sakai—for a Q&A moderated by Chris Komai that will be streamed live on JANM’s YouTube channel on Friday, July 10 at 6 p.m. (PDT). They will discuss the impact of Hideo Nomo on Major League Baseball, what it was like for him, and what his success meant in Japan and to Japanese Americans. They will also talk about the enduring legacies of the other featured individuals.

Submit questions in advance using this form. Participants will be able to chat and ask additional questions live (you will need to be logged in to YouTube to participate in the chat).

JANM Digital Film Festival—Join us as we dive into films produced by the Japanese American National Museum’s Frank H. Watase Media Arts Center! Organize a (virtual) screening party with your friends or family or just get cozy and enjoy the JANM Digital Film Festival from the safety of your own home. We will also have Q&A sessions with the filmmakers and others involved in the projects.

 

"Virtual" Meditation with Japanese Singing Bowl

Wednesday, July 15, & 29, 2020 | 12:30 p.m. - 12:45 p.m.
Japan Foundation Los Angeles
(323) 761-7510

We would like to help during these trying times. Meditation with Japanese Singing Bowl will be offered via JFLA Facebook LIVE! The singing bowl used for this program harmoniously combines the healing qualities of the Tibetan singing bowl and its Japanese traditional singing bowl. Relax and feel your stress dissipate into thin air as the sounds of the singing bowl lead you into a meditative state.
The singing bowl used in this program is a healing musical instrument that Japanese craftsmen designed with the finest of details. Tibetan meditation bowl (a type of Buddhist instrument) has rich harmonic overtones, Japanese traditional singing bowl (also a type of Buddhist instrument) has a beautiful single tone and long sustain. The singing bowl used in this meditation program is a wonderful healing instrument incorporating both the Tibetan and Japanese qualities. Harmonious waves penetrate quickly and deeply, while harmonic overtones delicately realign the body.

 

Virtual Lecture Series: The Who's Who of Japanese Deities

Thursdays, July 16, 30 & August 13 & 27, 2020 | 7:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Japan Foundation Los Angeles
(323) 761-7510

Did you know that the famous Laughing Buddha is actually not a buddha at all or that the meditative buddha is only one type among a multitude? Did you know that the Buddhist heavens are under constant threat by hordes of demons and must therefore be defended by celestial protectors ?

This virtual lecture series will serve as an introduction not only to the categories of Buddhist deity, but to the iconography which will allow laypeople to identify specific figures. We will consider the sacred hand gestures, the weapons and implements, even the clothing, so that audience members can recognize some of the deities portrayed in or around a Japanese temple.

Each lecture will run for 30 minutes with a five minute Q&A session at the end. There will also be a short poll-based quiz to test your knowledge and site recommendations for notable depictions of the highlighted deities.

Lecture 1: Celestial Beings (July 16)
The celestial beings serve as protectors for the Buddhist cosmos. Often depicted with fearsome faces and war-like postures, many of these deities were once Hindu gods who were ultimately converted to serve the buddhas and bodhisattvas. Some are great commanders of supernatural armies, while others are invoked for more specialized purposes.
Lecture 2: Wisdom Kings (July 30)
Lecture 3: Bodhisattvas (August 13)
Lecture 4: Buddhas (August 27)


Admission is free. Registration is required. Register here.

Japan-U.S. 2020 Innovation Awards Symposium

Tuesday, July 14 - Tuesday, July 21, 2020
Japan Society of Northern California, U.S.-Asia Technology Management Center, Stanford University

Each year the Japan-U.S. Innovation Awards selects five exciting Japanese start-up companies that are incubating innovations with especially noteworthy potential, but that may not yet be well known in the Silicon Valley or U.S. business communities. This year's Innovation Showcase Companies are AC Biode, BionicM Inc., Empath Inc., MUSCA Inc., and QD Laser Inc.

Event Schedule:
Emerging Leader Awards and Panel Discussion
July 14, 2020 – 4:30-6:30PM Pacific Time (US/Canada)

Innovation Showcase Awards and Keynote Speech
July 21, 2020 – 4:30-6:30PM Pacific Time (US/Canada)

Networking “reception”
July 21, 2020 – 6:30-7:30PM Pacific Time (US/Canada)

Each year, two companies (one each from Japan and the U.S.) receive the SunBridge Emerging Leader award for technological innovations deemed to be disrupting their markets. To register, please visit here.

JAPAN CUTS 2020: Festival of New Japanese Film

Friday, July 17, 2020 - Thursday, July 30, 2020
Japan Society New York

In light of the ongoing international situation with COVID-19, Japan Society New York has decided to take their popular annual film event out of its usual form and offer a completely online experience.

This reimagined version of the festival will feature 14 days of unique virtual screening opportunities for Japanese cinema lovers, serving JAPAN CUTS’ dedicated audiences in New York City but also, for the first time, making the festival accessible to viewers throughout the United States.

Set within both recurring sections and new initiatives, the online festival will offer a diverse slate of around 30 feature films and shorts programs. Live-streamed virtual Q&As, panels and greetings from guest filmmakers will serve as opportunities for in-depth interaction.

Festivities kick off July 17 with a live virtual Q&A with Shinichiro Ueda, director of JAPAN CUTS 2020 Opening Film selection Special Actors – the much-anticipated follow-up feature to Ueda’s breakout 2017 indie debut film One Cut of the Dead.

The full lineup of films and events is set to be released in late June.

44th Annual Powell Street Festival 2020 Telethon

Saturday, August 1, 2020 | 2:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Powell Street Fesival Society
june@powellstreetfestival.com

Celebrate Japanese Canadian culture while giving back to your community! Join us for a LIVE online telethon August 1, 2020 from 2pm – 7pm to watch live performances, highlights from previous festivals, appearances from festival vendors, and so much more. Tune in with your family and friends to experience the spirit of the festival right from your home!

The Powell Street Festival Society (PSFS) produces the annual Japanese Canadian (JC) outdoor festival that takes place in the historic JC neighbourhood, Paueru Gai located in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside Side (DTES). The Powell Street Festival is the largest JC festival in the country and the longest running community arts celebration in Vancouver! Our mission is to cultivate Japanese Canadian arts and culture to connect communities. We thrive on and encourage community engagement, collaboration, and accessibility. That is why we offer space to Downtown Eastside Organizations among our community booths at the festival. Outside of our festival, we play an active role throughout the year in uplifting the DTES community. Through our Advocacy and Outreach Committee we help facilitate events such as workshops, free lunches, and artistic collaborations.

Regrettably, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the cancellation of the 44th Annual Powell Street Festival as a physical gathering. But the spirit of the festival lives on in our online Telethon August 1, 2020. The Telethon will be streamed on our website and will feature appearances from local JC artists, vendors and booths, and community stakeholders who are the heart of the festival. In addition, our website will host an online directory to highlight our food/craft/community booths and marketplace vendors.

Online Activities

LEARN JAPANESE

Embassy of Japan JICC Educational Resources and Activities

Japan Information & Culture Center (JICC), Embassy of Japan in Washington D.C.

The Japan Information & Culture Center at the Embassy of Japan in Washington D.C. has prepared their own educational resources for parents, educators, and those studying Japanese during this time. This page will get updated regularly with new information. View their free coloring book and other resources here!

Japan Foundation Learning Materials

Japan Foundation

The Japan Foundation has prepared their own educational resources for parents, educators, and those studying Japanese during this time.

MARUGOTO Plus Japanese Learning

The Japan Foundation

MARUGOTO+ (MARUGOTO Plus) is a website where users can learn about Japanese language and culture based on the contents of the "MARUGOTO: Japanese Language and Culture", the official coursebook of the Japan Foundation, which complies to the JF Standard for Japanese-Language Education.

"KC Yom Yom" for Easy Stories in Japanese

The Japan Foundation Japanese-Language Institute, Kansai

"KC Yom Yom," created by the Japan Foundation Japanese-Language Institute, Kansai, offers free Japanese stories based on the "tadoku" method of learning foreign languages by reading easy books. "Ta (多)" means "a lot" and "doku (読)" means "reading" in Japanese, so tadoku (多読) literally means "read a lot." You can find stories according to your level and listen to each story to improve your listening skills. "NPO Tadoku Supporters" also offers a variety of stories on it website here.



VIRTUAL MUSEUMS

IJC Museum: Online Art Museum

IJC Museum

The IJC Museum is a virtual museum in the cloud that exhibits the works of remarkable artists representing the Japanese modern art scene. You can view works from all directions with 360-degree freedom and get so close that you can see the subtlest details and even feel the presence of the artists. Artists include Yayoi Kusama, Nerhol, Manabu Ikeda, Tabaimo, Taku Obata, Kohei Nawa, and Hisashi Tenmyouya.

Ghibli Museum

Ghibli Museum, Mitaka

The Studio Ghibli museum has temporarily closed in the efforts of mitigating the spread of COVID-19 in Japan. The museum has released video footage on their YouTube channel of popular rooms in the building such as the prop room used for many of the Ghibli films. Normally, the Ghibli museum does not allow photos or videos to be taken inside the building, so it is the perfect chance to get a look into the museum.

Boro Textiles: Sustainable Aesthetics

Japan Society
Boro (“rags” or “tatters”) are patchwork textiles hand-pieced by peasants in Japan in the 19th and early 20th centuries. The inability to cultivate cotton in the northern climate of Tohoku necessitated the practice of stitching remnants of used fabric into utilitarian items, including blankets, coats and mittens. These hard-used garments – reworked over generations – express essential principles of Japanese ethics and aesthetics, such as an appreciation for distinguished imperfections and the avoidance of waste. For the first time in the U.S., this exhibition assembles over 50 archival pieces from the personal collection of folklorist and cultural anthropologist Chuzaburo Tanaka (1933–2013) presented alongside new portraits by editor-photographer Kyoichi Tsuzuki, designs by pioneers of Japanese avant-garde fashion Rei Kawakubo, Issey Miyake, Yohji Yamamoto, and textile-based works by Susan Cianciolo and Christina Kim – part of a generation of contemporary artists influenced by the aesthetics and ethics of mending, patchwork, and re-use. The installation, designed by New York architecture firm SO–IL, rediscovers this traditional handicraft, its history of survival and ingenuity, and its continued legacy within creative practices today. While our doors are closed, please enjoy a Virtual Video Tour of Boro Textiles: Sustainable Aesthetics, narrated by Director Yukie Kamiya and Assistant Curator Tiffany Lambert of Japan Society Gallery.

The Art of Impermanence: Japanese Works from the John C. Weber Collection and Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd Collection

Asia Society New York

Asia Society's gallery is currently closed, but you can still learn more about the exhibition and explore the works on Asia Society's website. Find images from the exhibition, as well as related podcasts and recordings of lectures. This exhibition is supported through the Exhibitions Abroad Support Program.
Impermanence is a pervasive subject in Japanese thought and art. Through masterpieces of calligraphy, painting, sculpture, ceramics, lacquers, and textiles drawn from two of America’s greatest Japanese art collections, this exhibition examines Japan's unique and nuanced references to transience. Objects span from the Jōmon period to the twentieth century. From images that depict the cycle of the four seasons and red Negoro lacquer worn so it reveals the black lacquer beneath, to the gentle sadness evoked in the words of wistfully written poems, the exhibition demonstrates that much of Japan's greatest art alludes directly or indirectly to the transient nature of life.

Painting Edo: Japanese Art from the Feinberg Collection

Harvard Art Museums

Painting Edo at the Harvard Art Museums is a great exhibition that you should not miss. Learn more about the exhibition in their series of videos. The museums have also been active on Facebook and Instagram. This exhibition is supported through the Exhibitions Abroad Support Program.

The Tale of Genji: A Japanese Classic Illuminated

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

This groundbreaking exhibition was part of our Japan 2019 project. You can still learn about this show and view all the exhibition objects on the museum's website. The exhibition catalogue is also available online for free.

The National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) - Japanese Modernism

This gallery located in Melbourne, Australia is offering online and downloadable exhibition resources for student learning experiences about Japanese Modernism in art. They also have virtual tours for other exhibitions in their current collection and video highlights from guest artists!

Digital Exhibition - Yōkai Senjafuda

The University of Oregon’s collection of senjafuda (千社札) is one of the largest in the world! Their digital exhibition focuses on tiny slips of paper that depict Japanese ghosts and monsters known as yōkai (妖怪).

e-Museum: National Treasures & Important Cultural Properties of National Museum, Japan

This website provides high definition images of National Treasures and Important Cultural Properties of Japan, owned by four national museums (Tokyo National Museum, Kyoto National Museum, Nara National Museum and Kyushu National Museum) belonging to the National Institutes for Cultural Heritage.

Enjoy Mori Art Museum @ Home!

The Mori Art Museum is one of the leading contemporary art museums in Tokyo. The museum offers a wide variety of their content online including official photos of installations to past exhibitions.

Renwick Gallery - Chiura Obata: American Modern

Chiura Obata (1885–1975) ranks among the most significant California-based artists and Japanese American cultural leaders of the last century. Check out the online gallery of his artwork on their website!

Google Arts & Culture

Explore museums all over Tokyo virtually through Google. Some collections include online exhibits, panoramic tours, video clips, and more. There is also an Art Camera available which will allow you to zoom into famous works of art. Washington DC's very own Freer and Sackler Gallery at the National Museum of Asian Art has its own online collection here too!

Adachi Museum of Art: The Adachi Museum of Art houses a collection of modern Japanese art. This museum is known for its magnificent Japanese garden.
Chihiro Art Museum: The Chihiro Art Museum Tokyo is a small gallery in Tokyo’s Nerima Ward dedicated to illustrator Chihiro Iwasaki (1918-1974), a Japanese artist renowned for her paintings and illustrations of flowers and children. Chihiro Art Museum’s virtual tour features three exhibitions, including some of Iwasaki’s most famous works.
Fukuoka Art Museum: From traditional Japanese screens to modern art, the Fukuoka Art Museum has a wide collection of approximately 16,000 works from ancient to contemporary. Enjoy Dali, Miro, Chagall, Tomita Kaisen’s scroll paintings and more.
Fukuoka Asian Art Museum: The Fukuoka Asian Art Museum is the only museum in the world that systematically collects and exhibits Asian modern and contemporary art.
Fukuoka City Museum: The Fukuoka City Museum displays the history of Fukuoka and the lifestyle of the people of the area. The museum’s collection includes a variety of sculptures, masks, and ukiyo-e.
Keio University Library: The Keio University Library has a few unique online ukiyo-e exhibitions, including "Give Me Back My Bonito!" and “Discover Tokyo Through Funny Food Ukiyo-e.”
Kioi Art Gallery, Edo Ise-Katagami Kimono Museum: Ise-katagami is the Japanese craft of making paper stencils for dyeing textiles. This museum boasts over 5,000 stencils from the Edo to the Showa periods.
Kobe City Museum: The Kobe City Museum owns nearly 70,000 objects, including a National Treasure comprising 21 items and 6 important Cultural Assets comprising 74 items. The museum includes textiles, silks and screens from the Edo period.
Kobe Fashion Museum: This is the first museum in Japan to specialize in fashion. Enjoy haute couture, textiles, costumes, and other fashion styles from European and Japanese fashion history.
Kyoto National Museum: The Kyoto National Museum is one of Japan's oldest and most distinguished museums. The museum's main focus is pre-modern Japanese art.
Kyoto Prefectural Domoto-Insho Museum of Fine Arts: The works of Insho Domoto (1891-1975), the great Nihonga painter, are preserved and displayed in the museum. The museum is dedicated to his work and features his traditional Japanese paintings to abstract paintings.
Mie Prefectural Art Museum: The Mie Prefectural Art Museum showcases are from the Edo period onward by artists who were either natives of Mie or had a close relationship with Mie, paintings from the Meiji period onward that show the development of modern oil paintings in Japan, or paintings by foreign artists who exerted a strong influence over modern Japanese art, and sketches, studies, watercolors, and other documents that give insight into the creative undertakings of key artists. After Mie Prefecture and Valencia, Spain became sister cities in 1992, the museum also began collecting works by important Spain artists.
MOA Museum of Art: The Mokichi Okada Association Museum of Art promotes a wide range of art and cultural activities. This museum in particular focuses on Rinpa, one of the major historical schools of Japanese paintings.
Museum of the Sakitama Ancient Burial Mounds: This museum has been actively involved in the preservation and maintenance of the Sakitama Kofun Cluster, a nationally designated historical site consisting of ancient burial bounds. View the burial accessories that were discovered at the burial mound of the Inariyama Kofun as well as earthenware called haniwa.
Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum: At 11:02 a.m. on August 9, 1945, the sky above Nagasaki was filled by a white flash, and all the clocks stopped. A gigantic mushroom-shaped cloud soared up towards the blue sky. The Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum displays a collection of photographs documenting the damage from the bombing.
National Museum of Nature and Science: Enjoy exhibits on anthropology and natural history including the dinosaur evolution, mining, and medicine in Japan.
The Kyoto Costume Institute: The Kyoto Costume Institute collects and preserves outstanding examples of western clothing through the centuries, as well as the historical items related to this area of study. Enjoy seeing different fashion pieces throughout the centuries.
The Museum of Modern Art, Gunma: This museum features ancient Japanese and Chinese art, and a group of works by artists born in Gunma, including Fukuzawa Ichiro, Yamaguchi Kaoru, and Tsuruoka Masao. It also contains a wide range of modern Japanese and modern Western art, contemporary art and textile.
The Museum of Modern Art, Saitama: This museum is the first art museum the architect Kurokawa Kisho designed. It displays a collection of fine artworks from modern Western masters to contemporary Japanese artists.
The Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka: This ceramics museum commemorates the donation of the world-renowned "Ataka Collection" by the 21 companies of the Sumitomo Group. There are various ceramics from around the world located here.
The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo: The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo is the foremost museum collecting and exhibiting modern Japanese art.
The National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo: The National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo was built to house the Matsukata Collection, which includes many Impressionist paintings and Rodin's sculptures.
Sagawa Art Museum: The Sagawa Art Museum is home to Raku ware, a type of Japanese pottery traditionally used during tea ceremonies. The collection includes pottery, clay, ceramic and rock pieces.
Sankeien Garden: The Sankeien Garden is a spacious Japanese garden created by Sankei Hara, a successful Yokohama businessman who had built a fortune through his silk business. Enjoy cultural artifacts as well as taking a stroll through the Japanese garden.
Sekido Museum of Art: Sekido Museum of Art was founded in April 2006 to promote international cultural exchange and mutual understanding through artcraft and to enhance Japanese culture. The museum's collection is built upon a group of works collected by Senju Satoh and features clay and ceramic pieces with intricate patterns.
Shizuoka City Tokaido Hiroshige Museum of Art: The Shizuoka City Tokaido Hiroshige Museum of Art focuses on the works of Edo Ukiyo-e artist, Utagawa Hiroshige. Some of Hiroshige's masterpieces include Fifty-Three Stations of the Tokaido, Sixty-Nine Stations of the Kisokaido and One Hundred Famous Views of Edo. Enjoy the internationally loved Ukiyo-e works from Edo to the present here.
Shizuoka Prefectural Museum of Art: The Shizuoka Prefectural Museum of Art displays various paintings to Mount Fuji as well as screen, canvas, and sculpture pieces.
Tachibana Museum: The Tachibana Museum houses cultural properties passed down to the Tachibana family that controlled the Yanagawa clan throughout the Edo Period. The museum displays items that convey the history of the Tachibana family: from a suit of armor that once belonged to family ancestor and first feudal lord of Yanagawa, Muneshige Tachibana, to gold and silver lacquer dispatch boxes, cosmetic utensils and Noh theater costumes.
Tokyo Fuji Art Museum: The Tokyo Fuji Art Museum collection is comprised of some 30,000 Japanese, Eastern and Western artworks, ranging from paintings, prints, photograpy, sculptures, ceramics and lacquer ware to armor, swords and medallions of various periods and cultures.
Tokyo National Museum: The Tokyo National Museum is perhaps the oldest and largest art museum in Japan. This museum collects, houses, and displays a comprehensive collection of art works and antiquities from Japan as well as other Asian countries.
Yamatane Museum of Art: The Yamatane Museum of Art is Japan's first museum dedicated to Nihonga (Japanese-style paintings).

  

EXPERIENCE JAPAN

Learning Daifuku/Sashiko Embroidery with the JICC, Embassy of Japan

Nowadays, the Japanese word boro is as common as wabi-sabi among the textile and fashion cognoscenti. Textile museums around the world have highlighted this unique Japanese patchwork technique originating from the Tōhoku region, establishing it as part of world textile history. Today, contemporary designers like Nakazato Yuima are drawing inspiration from boro in how they approach the construction of their cutting-edge garments.
In her book, Boro: Rags and Tatters from the Far North of Japan, Koide Yukiko explains that originally, boro was born out of necessity in the extreme north of Japan, where cotton cannot grow. Cotton fabric was such a precious commodity that every piece of it was saved for repurposing. It was even passed down through generations as a full garment or even as remnants.
Sashiko is an embroidery technique used on boro items to simultaneously decorate and reinforce the fabric. The story of the Tōhoku region’s former hardship can be found in the beautiful boro patchworks of treasured fabric pieces and their multi-purpose sashiko designs.
Recently, sashiko has gained popularity alongside boro, and it is enjoyed all over the world as a stylish and sustainable approach to fashion and repurposing household items.
Check out #sashiko on Instagram and find more stunning examples!

Free Coloring Activity: Yoroshiku-Girl by Yoshitomo Nara

Japan Society
Download the drawing here (Printable PDF)
Yoroshiku-Girl is feeling colorless - at home, away from her friends, her favorite stores and museums (and Japan Society). Bring her to life with lines, shapes and lots of color!
We are happy to offer Yoroshiku-Girl, a drawing by Yoshitomo Nara for your coloring enjoyment at home. With the artist’s support, we invite you to participate in this creative project for people of all ages. Share your artwork with us online using #JSFromHome for a chance to be featured on the Japan Society social media channels!

Free Coloring Books from Hanshin Railway

Hanshin Electric Railway

The Hanshin Electric Railway has collaborated with MofuMofuDo illustrators to create coloring books featuring iconic locations in Osaka and Kobe. Currently, there are 10 free coloring books available for download!

Travel through Japan with these VR videos: Tokyo, Kyoto, Nagasaki and more

Itching to visit Japan? Unfortunately, due to the Covid-19 coronavirus, we're all staying put indoors. However, with these 360-degree virtual-reality YouTube videos from Simbosi, you can 'travel' through Japan without a plane ticket. Each video puts you in a different destination in Japan – go from the hustle and bustle of Tokyo to Kyushu down south, then follow up with a trip to Japan's traditional crown jewel, Kyoto. Keep an eye out for historical facts in some of the videos – it's like having your own virtual tour guide.

Virtual Tours - Cherry Blossoms Around the World

Explore street views of some of the world's most scenic sakura spots as recommended by local reviewers on Google Maps. Each spot has descriptions and personal quotes from local guides.

Virtual Cherry Blossom Festival

National Cherry Blossom Festival
Like the spirit of Japan-U.S. friendship, the gift of cherry blossoms lives on. This year's National Cherry Blossom Festival is being held as a Virtual Festival, with countless videos and activities that bring the festivities to you. Take a tour of the Tidal Basin during peak bloom or explore activities for kids. As a special treat, the festival includes personally recorded videos by Japanese performers, including Naotaro Moriyama, Anna Sato x Toshiyuki Sasaki, and White Out Tokyo!



VIDEO & AUDIO CLIPS

Gold Hill Samurai... The Story of the First Japanese Colony On U.S. Soil

Sierra Community Access Television

The full play GOLD HILL SAMURAI is now showing on the Sierra Community Access Television YouTube Channel. (140 minutes) This original play written by Placerville's Jamie Van Sant was performed at American River Conservancy WakamatsuFest150 one year ago. This is the story of the first settlement in America by Japanese immigrants in 1869. This video also headlines the SCA-TV2 YT Wakamatsu/American River Conservancy Playlist which includes SCA-TV2 videos of prior year events at the Wakamatsu Tea and Silk Farm Colony, El Dorado County, CA.

NHK & Tokyo National Museum - The Magic of Japanese Masterpieces

Tokyo National Museum

NHK has partnered up with the Tokyo National Museum's to produce a radio series that delves into the history of Japanese relics and artifacts. You can listen to detailed descriptions and the origin of each art piece while looking at their online gallery.

New Japan Philharmonic Orchestra - Teleworking Performance

New Japan Philharmonic Orchestra

The New Japan Philharmonic Orchestra is a symphony orchestra founded in 1972 and based in Tokyo. They are known for their collaborations with video games such as Super Smash Bros. Melee, Kingdom Hearts, and the Resident Evil series. They also worked on Studio Ghibli soundtrack productions with Joe Hisaishi like Spirited Away and Howl's Moving Castle!

Podcasts to Learn about Japan

Time Out Tokyo

Discover Japanese daily life, food, history, sake and even ghost stories through these engaging podcasts. Featured podcasts include Japan Eats, Uncanny Japan, History of Japan, Voices in Japan, and Sake on Air.

What Bonsai Can Teach Us About Patience

The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens

Ted Matson, curator of The Huntington’s bonsai collections, used to be a writer. Whenever he felt writer’s block coming on, he would visit his personal collection of bonsai trees, do a little pruning and pinching and enter a “flow state."

Inevitably, the solution he was seeking would pop into his head. To help us grapple with the frustrations of coronavirus stay-at-home orders, host Giovana Romano Sanchez escorts us deep into the practice of bonsai for a lesson in patience, the concept of time, and respect for the pace of nature in this inaugural episode of the Hear and Now at The Huntington podcast.

 

The Sound of Tea

The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens

Enjoy the contemplative nature of a Japanese tea ceremony through sound as Robert Hori, gardens cultural curator, performs the traditional ritual and discusses the intricacies of this venerable art form.

 

STORIES

Haruki Murakami - Free Short Stories to Read

For a limited time only, the New Yorker has made several short stories penned by Haruki Murakami free to read! You can also view another translated short story of his here.



ONLINE COURSES

Japanese-inspired Food Education Course for Students of All Ages

Table for Two

Table for Two has partnered up with Wa-Shokuiku to offer a free a online course! You can learn the principles of Japanese cuisine and food culture, and gain the skills to prepare healthy, nutritious foods to strengthen your bodies and minds.

Free Online Course from Harvard University - Japanese Books: From Manuscript to Print

Harvard Faculty of Arts & Sciences

Take a free course on Japanese Books with materials being drawn from Harvard University's extensive collections. Topics include notable Japanese books and scrolls, binding techniques, and visual storytelling in premodern Japan.

Local Upcoming Events

Arizona Area Events

 

Southern California Area Events

(TEMPORARILY CLOSED) Yoshitomo Nara

Sunday, April 5 - Sunday, August 23, 2020 | Mon-Thurs 11:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Fri 11:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m., Sat-Sun 10:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m., Closed Wed
Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)
5905 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036

Yoshitomo Nara is among the most beloved Japanese artists of his generation. His widely recognizable portraits of menacing figures reflect the artist’s raw encounters with his inner self. A peripatetic traveler, Nara’s oeuvre takes inspiration from a wide range of resources—memories of his childhood, music, literature, studying and living in Germany (1988–2000), exploring his roots in Japan, Sakhalin, and Asia, and modern art from Europe and Japan. Spanning over 30 years from 1987 to 2020, Yoshitomo Nara views the artist’s work through the lens of his longtime passion—music. Featuring album covers Nara began collecting as an adolescent, paintings, drawings, sculpture, ceramics, an installation that recreates his drawing studio, and never-before-exhibited idea sketches that reflect the artist’s empathic eye, this exhibition shines a light on Nara’s conceptual process. One of the main highlights will be Miss Forest, a 26-foot outdoor painted bronze sculpture that will grace Wilshire Boulevard.

2020 Annual Gala Dinner

Sunday, September 20, 2020
Asia Society Southern California

In support of Asia Society's mission to build bridges of understanding between Asia and the world, our annual Gala Dinner honors extraordinary leaders, whose contributions to business, culture, sports and philanthropy have enlivened Los Angeles, enhanced its global standing and generated goodwill on both sides of the Pacific. Join us on September 20, 2020!

Honorees:
•International Business Visionary: Stephen Riady - Executive Chairman & Group CEO, OUE Limited and Asia Society Trustee
•Urban Visionary: Jaime Lee - Chief Executive Officer, Jamison Realty, Inc.
•Japanese Olympic Movement and Bridge-Building Visionary: Tokyo Organizing Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic Games

 

Local Ongoing Events

Arizona Area Ongoing Events

First Friday Extended Hours

First Fridays | All Day
Japanese Friendship Garden of Phoenix
1125 N 3rd Ave, Phoenix, Arizona 85003
(602) 274-8700 | info@jfgphx.org

Free admission to the garden. Unique entertainment and Japanese Happy Hour bar every month.

Phoenix First Fridays

First Fridays | Evenings
Fushicho Daiko Dojo
925 Grand Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85007
(602) 350-0343 | info@taikoaz.com

During the evening of the first Friday of every month the dojo opens its doors to the public to come visit and watch our classes and performers and to try some taiko themselves! Come visit us at our dojo at 925 N.W. Grand Avenue in downtown Phoenix. You can’t miss the building as it has a large red mitsudomoe (pictured) on the south wall.

Public Tea Ceremony

Third or Fourth Saturday | Various Times
Japanese Friendship Garden of Phoenix
1125 N 3rd Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85003
(602) 274-8700 | info@jfgphx.org

Authentic tea ceremonies for the public are held on the third Saturday of each month October through June. The ceremonies are presented by Tanko Kai tea group, wearing beautiful kimonos in our Musoan tea house. Guests are met at the entry gate and conducted to the tea house by a docent who explains features in the tea garden and other interesting facts about the tea house itself. *Tea ceremonies require complete silence for a duration of 30 minutes. Guests must be age 12 years or older, as the seating may have other guests apart from your group.

 

Southern California Area Ongoing Events

First Friday Origami Club

First Fridays | 12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Storrier Stearns Japanese Garden
270 Arlington Dr, Pasadena, CA 91105
(626) 399-1721 | info@japanesegardenpasadena.com

Origami is one of Japan’s most exciting contributions to world culture and is now practiced by children, adults, artists and scientists all around the world. Join the Origami Club on First Fridays of every month and learn from local origami enthusiast and skilled folder, Nick Cavallo. We will provide origami paper and the spectacular natural setting of our garden to inspire the creation of flowers, fish, birds and other natural wonders ? all folded from paper.

Gardena Bonsai Society

First Fridays | 7:00 p.m.
Nakaoka Community Center
1670 W 162nd St, Gardena, CA 90247
(310) 217-9537

The Gardena Bonsai Society meets regularly at the Nakaoka Community Center on the first Friday of the month at 7 p.m. The Society is a group for the novice and the experienced bonsai artist, with each meeting being highlighted by demonstrations and lectures. Lessons are also available on Wednesday nights. The Annual Bonsai Show is held on the first weekend of May.

Gardena Kawai Sumi-e Club

Tuesdays | 5:30 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Nakaoka Community Center
1670 W 162nd St, Gardena, CA 90247
(310) 217-9537

The Kawai Sumi-e Club meets every Tuesday evening from 5:30 p.m. - 9 p.m. at the Nakaoka Community Center. Sumi-e is the Japanese art of black and white painting.

(TEMPORARILY CLOSED) Japanese Book Club

Fourth Saturdays | 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Little Tokyo Branch Library
203 S Los Angeles St, Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 612-0525

Enjoy a discussion in Japanese about the books you've read or share the latest articles that you've found interesting.

(TEMPORARILY CLOSED) Japanese Storytime

First Saturdays | 11:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Little Tokyo Branch Library
203 S Los Angeles St, Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 612-0525

Children, parents, and caregivers, join us for our fun and lively Japanese storytime. Listen to exciting and entertaining stories told in Japanese by our STAR reader.

Japanese Teahouse Tours

Second Tuesdays | 11:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens
1151 Oxford Rd, San Marino, CA 91108
(626) 405-2100

Learn about the history of Japanese Garden's ceremonial teahouse and the traditions behind its use. Informal tours are offered at 20-minute intervals on the second Monday of every month. General admission; no reservations required.

(TEMPORARILY CLOSED) Origami Club

Fourth Saturdays | 1:00 p.m.
Palisades Branch Library
861 Alma Real Dr, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272
(310) 459-2754

Come join us as Travis Taft, origami folder extraordinaire, will teach the basics of this stress-busting art. Learn some, craft some, and have a great time!

(TEMPORARILY CLOSED) Origami Club

Second Thursdays | 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
John C. Fremont Branch Library
6121 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038
(323) 962-3521

Master Folder Travis Taft teaches the Japanese art of origami to students of all ages (above 7) and all levels. Travis will host Origami Club the second Thursday of each month at 4:00 p.m.

(TEMPORARILY CLOSED) Origami for Teens & Young at Heart

First Thursdays | 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Little Tokyo Branch Library
203 S Los Angeles St, Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 612-0525

Join us for a workshop to make origami. Participants will learn about the history of this craft and then make their own origami creations. All supplies will be provided.

Oshaberi Tuesday! おしゃべり火曜!

Tuesdays | 6:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Tea N More
7380 Clairemont Mesa Blvd, #111, San Diego, CA 92111
(858) 571-2926 | https://www.meetup.com/SanDiegoJapanese/

Every week, we get together for an informal session, where you can come to practice English or Japanese, socialize about culture, study, or just sit back and relax. All skill levels are welcome! New people show up every week, and we all have a great time. Please be sure to order some food and/or drink so we will continue to be welcomed there. Tell the cashier you are with Japanese Meetup and you'll receive 10% off your order. You can accrue even more savings by using the Fivestars rewards program.

Second Sunday Open Day (Tea Ceremony)

Second Sundays | 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Storrier Stearns Japanese Garden
270 Arlington Dr, Pasadena, CA 91105
(626) 399-1721 | info@japanesegardenpasadena.com

Even though the Storrier Stearns garden is a perfect backdrop for cultural events, festivals and celebrations, Japanese gardens are designed primarily for quiet contemplation and introspection. Our Second Sundays will offer visitors the serenity that has characterized Japanese gardens for centuries, a respite from a hectic world. Chairs and benches will be scattered around the garden and tables will be available for picnics and conversation. Highlighting the day will be tea ceremonies in the Niko-an Teahouse (reserved separately.)

South Coast Bonsai Association Meeting

Fourth Sundays (with exceptions for August, November & December) | 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
South Coast Botanic Garden
26300 Crenshaw Blvd, Palos Verdes Peninsula, CA 90274
Palos Verdes Peninsula, CA 90274 | uedak@sbcglobal.net

The South Coast Bonsai Association meets the fourth Sunday of most months at South Coast Botanic Garden. For additional information contact Ken Ueda.

The Garden's ShinKanAn Teahouse and Garden

Second Saturdays | 11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Santa Barbara Botanical Garden
1212 Mission Canyon Rd, Santa Barbara, CA 93105
(805) 682-4726 | sbteahouse@gmail.com

The Teahouse is open every second Saturday of the month from 11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Visitors and members are welcome to experience our ShinKanAn Teahouse and Garden. Trained Teahouse volunteers will be available to share their skills and answer questions about the rich traditions of the Japanese tea ceremony.