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Takashi Murakami is Getting into the Sake Business

Contemporary artist Takashi Murakami is one of Japan’s most commercially successful artists. He’s also the proprietor of his own gallery and bar, where’s he’s free to exercise some of his other interests.

New Cut Paper Book Sculptures by Noriko Ambe

Noriko Ambe’s Man and the Sea, cut on a book of the same name and completed in 2016 Noriko Ambe is a longtime Japanese transplant in the New York creative scene, who hand-slices thousands of paper sheets into remarkable sculptures. Ambe is exhibiting a new body of work at her solo show “Continuous Cutting Altered Daily” at the newly established Maho Kubota Gallery in Tokyo’s Shibuya district.

A New Kindergarten Made From Shipping Containers Teaches Kids to Value Resources

Photography by Studio Bauhaus, Ryuji Inoue For its 50th anniversary, Ogura Asahi Kindergarten in Saitama, Japan upcycled stacked shipping containers into an earthquake-resistant and environmentally friendly kindergarten. These alternative structures were completed in a relatively short amount of time in 2016 by Hibinosekkei + Youji No Shiro, architects who specialize in the construction of children’s facilities.

Sukima Atelier: a home in Tokyo that’s like a stroll through the city

Welcome to Sukima Atelier, a structure which captures the vibe of the Tokyo cityscape in a single residential home.

Wagashi Shop in Tokyo Sells Seppuku-Themed Dessert

Just South of Central Tokyo, in the district of Shinbashi, is a 104-year old wagashi shop that’s been family-run for 3 generations.

MUJI’s New Tatazumai Collection of Artisan Crafts

Teapot by Keisuke Iwata If there’s any major retailer that can authentically make the claim of an “artisan craft collection,” it’s the Japanese minimal lifestyle retailer MUJI.

Wooden Work Stations and Benches Added to Subway Stations Along the Tokyo Metro

The Tokyo Metro opened Japan’s first Subway, the Ginza Line, in 1927. Almost 90 years have passed and underground network of trains has grown to become one of the world’s most complex yet well-working subterranean infrastructure.

Miniature Collages Inspired by the Sea, Made From Newspaper Clippings and Nihonga Materials

“Great Wave 2.” Mineral pigments (pearl, copper, brass), newspaper, magazine clippings, hemp paper board.

Miyagawa Bagel: a New York Staple Meets Local Japanese Ingredients

Call it the land of the rising bagel. Thanks to their close association to New York, an eternal fashion icon for Japan, the unassuming bagel has seen a surge in popularity over the last couple years.

Shin Yoshiwara: A New Risqué Souvenir Shop in Tokyo Inspired by the City’s Red Light District

The district of Yoshiwara in Tokyo has a 400-year history of catering to our carnal cravings. In order to reign in widespread male and female prostitution, in 1617 the government restricted prostitution only to this area, located just North of Asakusa.

Portraits of Tokyo’s Stray Cats by Masayuki Oki

When Masayuki Oki calls the cats he photographs busanyan, he means it in the most affectionate way. Literally “ugly cat,” Oki is a master at catching the stray cats of Tokyo making funny faces, napping and even sometimes fighting.

New Metallic Paintings by Miya Ando (plus a giveaway)

For hundreds of years the alchemists toiled away in their secret labs concocting chemicals and pigments they hoped would turn metal to gold.

Broken Ceramics Washed Up Onto the Shore, Turned Into Chopstick Rests Using Kintsugi

“As every Japanese has realized, the waves can take away a great deal from us,” says artist Tomomi Kamoshita.

Explore the Street Art and Murals of Tokyo’s Tennozu Aisle

Tennozu Aisle is a small island in Tokyo Bay that was built over a period of 14 years in the early 1900s by dredging sand and sediment from the bottom of the bay.

Reflective Paintings of Water and Ripples by Yoshihito Kawase

“Water” Mineral pigments, sumi ink, gold-leafed on paper The quietude that seems almost deafening after a violent storm.

Japan’s First Museum Dedicated to Miniature Architecture Models

Architectural models are an essential part of architecture and the city planning process – a concrete means by which the architect communicates and visualizes a plan before it is built and, effectively, becomes permanent.

Music Monday: Charan Po Rantan

Klezmer funk meets circus Chic. At least, that’s how we would describe the music of Charan Po Rantan in 5 words or less.

Andy Warhol Randoseru

One of the rites of passage for Japanese kids entering elementary school is the randoseru. Parents will typically spend several hundred dollars on these leather backpacks, which are pricey but used throughout all 6 years of elementary school.

A Real Estate Company Created New Homes for Hermit Crabs

hermit crabs professionally seek out better homes their entire lives There’s a shortage of housing among a large community of house hunters.

Cobuke Coffee: An Industrial Warehouse in Chiba Converted to a Coffee Shop

all photos by Yoichi Onoda It’s an odd location for a coffee shop. But last month, on May 1, a stylish cafe opened its doors in the small Kobuke district of Chiba.