No49 [Well-being] The zazen experience

At first glance, sitting with a good posture to meditate looks difficult, but it’s actually quite easy. Just be careful not to doze off. Nothing helps you recharge your batteries like a session of mindfulness meditation. Shinsho-ji is the ideal place to practise it. In recent years, more and more [...]
mohikan comes home, okita shuichi

No48 [Cinema] Japan as you have never seen it

Two worlds collide in Okita Shuichi’s The Mohican Comes Home (Mohikan kokyo ni kaeru, 2016). The Japan Foundation is offering an interesting perspective on Japanese society for its 2017 Touring Film Programme. In Japan, I often get the impression that cinema is on its death bed. It’s not any[...]
Sejima Kazuyo, Hokusai museum

No47 [Exclusive] First visit to the Hokusai museum

The design of the new Tokyo Museum was entrusted to Sejima Kazuyo. Open to the public since November the 22nd, the new Hokusai museum welcomed Zoom Japan for an exclusive visit. The Sumida Hokusai Museum opened its doors on November the 22nd, in a popular neighbourhood of Tokyo. Located close to the[...]

No46 [Encounter] The amazing Kakuta Mitsuyo

Kakuta has written a wide variety of novels and depicted the lives of many different types of women through her characters. Having received a number of literary awards during her career, Kakuta Mitsuyo is now considered as one of the leading authors representing Japan today. Her 2004 work “Woman o[...]
yu miri

No45 [Interview] For those with nowhere to go

The author Yu miri, as someone who had nowhere to go herself, has continued writing for people in the same situation. In 2018, two translations of author Yu Miri’s works will be released in the U.K. Living a mere 23km from the troubled nuclear plant in Fukushima prefecture, what does Miri see now,[...]

No43 [Tradition] Fertility pure and simple

Every spring Kawasaki welcomes thousands of visitors who come to celebrate sexuality. At the Kanayama shrine, a group of around twenty people are gathered in front of an altar upon which rice moulded into the shapes of two penises and vaginas have been placed. These intimate symbols of fertility are[...]

No43 [Music] Very Japanese…?!

These two unique Japanese artists made a great success of their recent performances at London comic con. MCM Comic Con was recently held in London from the 27th to the 29th of May. This event was a great success, seeing over 130,000 visitors, and was also the stage for impassioned performances from [...]

No42 [Trend] Secondhand goods are so good

Secondhand shops are part of life in Japanese cities, and people love to visit them. It’s 4pm in the bohemian district of Shimokitazawa. Here, to the northwest of Tokyo, the streets are full of secondhand shops. People come here to look for a bargain with a touch of style that won’t break the ba[...]

No41 [Interview] In the shadow of the superheroes

after playing the key character in Ultraman’s first series, kurobe Susumu still remains very popular 50 years later. Since the beginning of the Ultraman saga 50 years ago, many actors have played Ultraman’s human alter ego, but few people can compete in popularity with Kurobe Susumu, aka the[...]

No41 [Cinema] Iwai Shunji, multi-talented genius

On the release his new picture; The Murder Case of Hana & Alice, the filmmaker reveals what motivates his work. Ten years after Hana & Alice (the 2004 film that consolidated his fame as one of Japan’s top directors), Iwai Shunji has finally managed to fulfil his dream of making another w[...]