The main pleasure of any extensive ukiyo-e (woodblock print) exhibition, like the "Floating World" show now on at the Mitsubishi Ichigokan Museum, is the evocation of the unique civilization that underlies this particular slab of global modernity.
Among the sleek office buildings of the surrounding Marunouchi district and the retro-modernity of the museum building itself, which replicates a Western-style office building from the Meiji Era (1868-1912), this collection of woodblock prints sounds a note that still resonates with a deeper and more essential Japan.
The show presents almost 600 separate works, sourced from the collection of Fumio Saito and the Kawasaki Isago no Sato Museum, of which Saito is the director. These are presented in three separate installments, with the first batch on display until July 15, so, yes, if you want to see the entire show you will have to make three trips.
A total of 36 people were confirmed dead and seven remain missing on Wednesday after a series of landslides and flooding triggered by torrential rain overnight engulfed residential areas in Hiroshima, western Japan. (Kyodo)
The sports ministry has deemed a proposal to renovate the National Stadium for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics unrealistic, because of a number of drawbacks including insufficient earthquake resistance and building regulations that prohibit the blocking of sunlight from nearby structures. (The Japan News)
East Japan Railway Co., or JR East, announced new plans on Tuesday for three train lines linking Tokyo International Airport at Haneda and key stations in the Japanese capital by building a new underground station and tunnel. (Jiji Press)
The chief suspect in the murder of a wealthy Swiss-based Japanese asset manager and his wife whose bodies were found buried in a vacant lot in Kuki, Saitama Prefecture, in February 2013, pleaded not guilty as his trial opened in Tokyo on Tuesday. (Japan Today)
Local summer festivals in Tokyo were once lined with many street stalls run by organizations with links to organized crime. But festivals have undergone a makeover after a metropolitan government ordinance enacted in October 2011 banned event organizers from allowing gangs from becoming involved. (The Japan News)
A Sapporo assemblyman has drawn fire for posting comments online stating the indigenous Ainu group "no longer exists," and suggesting those who identify as Ainu are motivated by government programs that benefit the ethnic minority. (Japan Times)