Tag Archives: japan

Strawberries Will Save the World

 

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Japanese director Yoko Okumura’s Strawberries Will Save the World is a short and whimsical documentary that takes viewers into the life of Yuko Okumura, an avid strawberry enthusiast and the director’s own mother. Yoko’s main instruction to her production team was to make the film “Make it cute. Make it really really cute! ” Strawberry mugs, strawberry socks, strawberry glasses, strawberry spatula, and even a strawberry-related chatroom – Yuko’s life and home is filled to the brim with anything and everything strawberry related. In Japanese, the word for strawberry is ichigo, which can be dissected into ichi (meaning one) and go (meaning five). As a result, the number 15 is considered to be related to the fruit. And whether it’s checking the time or driving around, Yuko feels like the number 15 shows up everywhere she goes even though she’s not looking for it. This became affirmation that, all along, it wasn’t her searching for strawberries – strawberries are naturally drawn to her.


居住在美国的日本影片制作人 Yoko Okumura拍摄了一部记录短片,讲述了一个草莓疯狂痴恋者的故事,而影片的主人公 ——Yuko Okumura,正是她的妈妈。短片以一种轻松可爱的手法讲述了Yuko女士对草莓的痴狂。拍摄的时候,导演Yoko Okumura给团队的要求就是:“拍得可爱一些,拍的非常非常可爱。” 草莓杯、草莓袜、草莓眼镜和草莓锅铲甚至是草莓聊天室,Yuko女士家中塞满了和草莓相关的一切,或者说,她的生命也是和草莓紧紧关联在一起的。在日语中,草莓的发音与数字“15”的发音一致, Yuko女士说每当她拿起手机或开车的时候,总能自然地看到”15“这个数字,仿佛不是她在找草莓,而是草莓进入了她的生活。

The internet has allowed Yuko to connect with other like-minded strawberry lovers and share her impressive collection with them. She’s now a member of a Japanese association of strawberry enthusiasts and is even brainstorming on how to shoot an entire movie about strawberries. As this simple fruit has brought so much joy to her own life, Yuko feels compelled to spread this same happiness to more people around the world. Watch the documentary above to see how Yuko plans to channel more positivity into the world with the power of strawberries.


现在,Yuko女士是日本一个草莓爱好者协会的成员,她通过网络向和她一样喜欢草莓的朋友们分享她的收藏,甚至还在筹备着一部和草莓相关的电影。Yuko女士一直坚信着一件事——草莓可以拯救世界。草莓为她的生活带来了太多的欢乐,而她正尝试着将这些欢乐传递出去,影响更多的人。观看上方的影片,感受这对母女用草莓向世界传递的童趣和正能量。

Website: yokofilm.com
Vimeo: ~/yokookumura

 

Contributor: Ye Zi


网站yokofilm.com
Vimeo~/yokookumura

 

供稿人: Ye Zi

Passion & Fragility

Friends

Mizuki Nishiyama is a Japanese multimedia artist, painter, and poet based in New York City. Currently a student at the Parsons School of Design, Nishiyama creates abstract expressionist works that examine personal experiences, ideas of the extreme, and the concept of human fragility. Nishiyama tells Neocha more about her artwork below.


Mizuki Nishiyama是来自日本的多媒体艺术家、画家和诗人,现居纽约,就读于帕森设计学院(Parsons School of Design)。Nishiyama以抽象表现主义的作品,探讨自己的人生经历,极端的想法和人类脆弱性的概念。最近,Nishiyama和Neocha分享了她对艺术、文化和创意的一些想法。

Snails In Her Eyes
Gustav
In My Lake of Boulders

Neocha: What first drew you to pursue art?

Nishiyama: My grandma, granduncle, and mother are all painters. Each of them work in different mediums – my grandma uses tennen iwa enogu (powdered minerals) for Nihonga (traditional Japanese art), my granduncle paints with watercolor, and my mother paints with oil. As my family has an artistic background, I presume I’ve been influenced by them. Nevertheless, many of my own personal developments have led me to explore different methods to recreate or make a statement, whether it be through music, dance, or writing. Over time, I’ve realized that painting allows me to create the most accurate representation of what I intend to visualize.


Neocha: 你一开始为什么会对艺术感兴趣?

Nishiyama: 我的祖母、伯祖父和母亲都是画家。他们各自用着不同的媒介来创作。我的祖母用Tennen Iwa Enogu(粉状矿物质)来画日本画(Nihonga,指日本的民族传统绘画),我的伯祖父画水彩画,而我母亲则是画油画。由于我家的艺术背景,我从小就已经受到他们的影响。尽管如此,我个人的很多经历也在促使我去寻求不同的方法来创作或表达,可以是音乐,也可以是舞蹈或写作。慢慢地,我意识到,绘画能最准确表达出我想要可视化的内容。

Rokurokubi

Neocha: Aside from familial influences, how does Japan and its culture influence your artistic process?

Nishiyama: I was fortunate to have been raised in a culturally diverse environment. My father is from Japan and my mother is from Hong Kong, but they spent a big portion of their lives in Italy. Bouncing between five languages at home and attending a Canadian International School in Hong Kong, I’ve never been able to identify concretely with particular heritages. However, I’ve always had a fondness for Japanese history and culture. By visiting Japan ever so often, I’ve been exposed to traditional arts such as bunraku (traditional Japanese puppet theatre), kabuki (classical Japanese dance-dramas), buyō (traditional Japanese performing arts), and ukiyo-e (an art genre that flourished in Japan between the 17th and 19th century), which have all brought my attention and attraction to classical arts. I’m so grateful to have been brought up with multiple cultural values, as I do realize that I unconsciously blend aspects of all those cultures together.


Neocha: 日本文化对你的作品有什么影响?

Nishiyama: 我很幸运可以在一个多元文化的环境中成长。我的父亲来自日本,而我的母亲来自香港,但他们大部分时间都生活在意大利。在家里,我会在五种语言之间来回切换,加上是在香港的加拿大国际学校读书的,所以,对我来说,我从来都没有特别觉得自己属于哪一种文化。不过,我一直都很喜欢日本的历史和文化。我经常去日本,也接触到很多当地传统艺术,例如文乐(Bunraku)、歌舞伎(Kabuki)、舞踊(Buyō)和浮世绘(Ukiyo-e)、而这些艺术又让我开始注意并喜欢上古典艺术。我很感恩,自己能在这种多元文化的环境中成长,因为我发现,自己会不自觉地将这些不同文化融合在一起。

B.D.P.C.
She
Peas and Peaches

Neocha: What are some recurrent themes in your artwork?

Nishiyama: I’m a very emotionally driven person. I’m tempestuous, and my thoughts are impassioned. The images that I paint come from a very sensitive and ardent side of my human experience that I simply want to document.

My work covers unconventional topics about the human experience that are intentionally confrontational. I’m extremely intrigued by the rawness of the human psyche when we are vulnerable to our emotions. These feelings help cultivate my creativity through emotional intimacy between myself and the brush. The themes I’ve expressed thus far have been based on personal experiences and spontaneous social issues, often ignored or instinctively disregarded by society.

I started painting as a response to many situations in my life. This allowed me to take a step back, and analyze these situations through a secondary lens. I consider my paintings as somewhat of a visual diary. By looking back at my work, I’ve learned to understand myself better – emotionally and circumstantially.


Neocha你的作品有哪些常见主题?

Nishiyama我是一个很情绪化的人。我性格暴躁,充满激动的想法。我所创作的画像,灵感就源自于我想要记录的那些极为敏感和激烈的人生经历。

我的作品探讨的都是比较颠覆传统、关于人类经历的主题,充满着故意的对抗性。我尤其热衷研究人类最本质的精神世界,因为那时候的我们很容易受情绪主宰。这些情绪能让我和画笔融为一体,从而提升我的创意。迄今为止,我所表达的主题都是来自于个人的经历和当下的社会问题,尤其是那些常常被社会忽视或本能地忽略的话题。

我一开始画画,是为了对我的生命中很多情况作出回应。通过绘画,我可以让自己退后一步,以另一个角度来分析这些情况。我觉得自己的画作其实算是我的视觉日记。回顾这些作品,可以让我更好地了解自己的情感和身处的环境。

Camellia
Tic Tac Toe
Swing Me From The Cantaloupe I Swear To Beckon This Raisin Day

Neocha: How does color play a role in your art? What does color mean to you?

Nishiyama: Selecting the appropriate colors to provoke emotions and amplify messages are constantly on my mind. Themes surrounding my pieces are often quite impassioned, so I tend to naturally grab darker, more vibrant and vivid shades. I am currently experimenting with mediums. I am familiar working with highly pigmented shades, however, I’ve recently begun incorporating gouache, gloss, thickening mediums, as well as glazing to create a variety of looks.


Neocha: 色彩在你的艺术创作中扮演什么角色?色彩对你来说意味着什么?

Nishiyama: 我总是会去思考如何选择合适的色彩来挑动情绪,突显作品想要传达的信息。我的作品主题往往都十分激烈的情感,所以很自然地,我倾向于使用更鲜活生动的暗色调。我目前在尝试用不同的媒介进行创作。我比较擅长用高饱和度的色彩创作,但是最近我也开始使用水粉、光泽涂料、可以增厚质感的媒介,以及透明画法(glazing)来营造同不的效果。

Sunflowers Dream

Neocha: As both a painter and a poet, how does your creative process differ across these two mediums?

Nishiyama: Literature and painting go hand-in-hand when it comes to being able to show an accurate representation of what I intend to document. I’m a big fan of confessional poetry. I do not intend to create flawless stanzas nor sculptured phrases. I have always treated both my paintings and my poems as representative milestones in my life. The commonality would be the emotional heaviness I convey through both mediums.


Neocha: 你身兼画家和诗人两个身份,那么你在分别创作这两个媒介时,会有什么不同的创作思路吗?

Nishiyama: 文学和绘画都能准确表达出我想要记录的内容,在这一点上,两者是一样的。我特别喜欢自白派诗歌(Confessional Poetry)。我不打算创作出完美无瑕的诗节,也不想精雕细琢所用的词语。一直以来,我创作的画和诗都是记录我生命的里程碑。两者的共性在于我透过这两种媒介传达的沉重情感。

Katherine

Neocha: How has studying in New York City influenced your attitude towards art?

Nishiyama: I became more driven once I started attending the Parsons School of Design, due to constantly being surrounded by highly motivated and creative people. Moving to New York City meant there were going to be a lot of new life changes, and that resulted in many conversational pieces. Nonetheless, Hong Kong, Japan, and New York are all creative, visionary cities to develop one’s art. But I do favor New York simply because it is a new chapter in my life, and there is yet so much more for me to learn and explore.


Neocha: 在纽约学习的经历让你对艺术的态度产生了什么变化?

Nishiyama: 入读美国帕森斯设计学院( Parsons School of Design)后,我变得更有创作的动力,因为身边的人都充满了创作欲望和创意才华的人。搬到纽约后,在生活上自然会发生很多的变化,也因此创作了很多交谈画(Conversational Piece)。虽然香港、日本和纽约都是充满前卫创意的地方,非常适合发展艺术,但我尤其喜欢纽约。原因很简单,它代表着我人生的新篇章,在这座城市有那么多值得我去学习和探索的东西。

Messy Heads

Website: mizukinishiyama.com

 

Contributor: George Zhi Zhao


网站mizukinishiyama.com

 

供稿人: George Zhi Zhao

Turning Rocks into Art

Japanese artist Hirotoshi Ito doesn’t carve the type of statues that most people might expect of traditional sculptors. Coming from a masonry background, Ito creates sculptures that preserves most of the stone’s original form and texture. Despite this, it’s often difficult to believe that Ito’s sculptures are made of solid rock, as his adept manipulation of the rigid medium makes many of his works appear as they were actually created with a much more malleable material. From laughing rocks with human teeth to unzipped rock pouches filled with seashells, Ito’s imaginative works seem to push the boundary of possibilities. See more of his surreal sculptures below.


日本艺术家伊藤博敏(Hirotoshi Ito)的雕塑作品颠覆了大多数人对传统雕塑家的想法。伊藤博敏本是一名石匠,他所创作的雕塑作品在很大程度上保留了石头本身原来形状和纹理。但是,看到他的雕塑作品,人们难以相信它们竟然是坚硬的岩石。他对这些坚硬材料的熟练处理,使它们看上去像是更软的材料。从笑着露出牙齿的石头,到拉链打开、装满贝壳的“石袋”,伊藤博敏天马行空的作品,似乎在不断突破可能性的极限。下面一起来欣赏他所创作的超现实主义雕塑作品吧。

Website: jiyuseki.com
DeviantArt: jiyuseki.deviantart.com

 

Contributor: David Yen
Images Courtesy of Hirotoshi Ito


网站jiyuseki.com
DeviantArtjiyuseki.deviantart.com

 

供稿人: David Yen
图片由Hirotoshi Ito提供

The Bed & Art Project

 

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The Bed and Art Project (BnA) is a hotel and art initiative founded in 2015 by entrepreneurs Yu “Taz” Tazawa and Yuto Maeda, architect Keigo Fukugaki, and later joined by community liaison and art director Kenji Daikoku. Collaborating with up-and-coming Japanese artists, BnA creates one-of-a-kind livable art spaces that are available for booking by the public.


The Bed and Art Project (BnA)是由企业家Yu “Taz” Tazawa、Yuto Maeda和建筑师Keigo Fukugaki于2015年共同创立的一个酒店和艺术项目,后来社区联络官和艺术策划人Kenji Daikoku也加入了这个项目。BnA携手日本当地崭露头角的艺术家,共同打造一个宜居的艺术空间,并面向公众开放预订。

Samurai by MIZPAM
Deer God by SIMO
Samurai by MIZPAM
Raijin and Fujin by DOPPEL

The project was first implemented via Airbnb, with art apartments in Tokyo’s Ikebukuro neighborhood and Kyoto. The initiative was wildly successful and allowed the team to establish their flagship art hotel, BnA Hotel Koenji, in 2016. The hotel currently features two art rooms designed by local artists, a rooftop, the FRONTDESK cafe bar, and the BACKROOM basement gallery.


项目最初是以Airbnb为平台开始运行的,分别在东京池袋和京都推出艺术公寓。一经推出,便大获成功,团队也因此得以在2016年推出属于他们自己的旗舰艺术酒店——位于高圆寺的BnA酒店。该酒店目前有两间由当地艺术家绘画设计的房间,一个天台,一间FRONTDESK咖啡吧,以及一间BACKROOM 地下画廊。

BnA was founded to address common problems faced by artists and creatives – the lack of resources and financial stability, limited space to showcase and sell artwork, lack of networking opportunities, and a disconnect between creative-minded travelers and local art communities. In response to these issues, BnA developed its business model to empower artists financially, creatively, and professionally.


BnA的成立是为了解决艺术家和创意人才所面临的共同问题——缺乏资源、收入不稳定,没有足够空间来展示和出售自己创作的艺术品,缺乏社交机会以及与创意型游客和当地艺术团体之间的脱节。对此,BnA开发了现在的创新商业模式,从收入、创意和专业方面为艺术家提供帮助。

 

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By implementing a revenue sharing business model, BnA allows artists to receive a percentage of the fee every time their room is booked. In addition, artists are given full creative control to design the rooms according to their visions, with support from architects, textile designers, carpenters, and lighting professionals. BnA Hotel Koenji also provides artists with space to exhibit their personal works, which are made available to the public for purchase.


BnA酒店制订了一个收入分成的商业模式,当有客人入住房间时,艺术家可以享受到房费的分成。此外,艺术家获得了房间设计的全部控制权,让他们可以在建筑师、纺织品设计师、木匠和照明专家的支持下,根据自己的想法设计房间。高圆寺BnA酒店还为艺术家提供展示个人作品的空间,吸引公众前来购买。

Into the Foreign by Yohei Takahashi
Into the Foreign by Yohei Takahashi
Into the Foreign by Yohei Takahashi

The BnA team plans to expand the hotel with two new projects opening in Tokyo and Kyoto in the next year, and thirty to forty more rooms built around the Koenji neighborhood in the next three years. They also plan to take their business model to other cities and countries as a way to connect creative communities and empower artists.


BnA团队计划明年在东京和京都推出两间新酒店,并在未来三年左右,将高圆寺附近的房间数量增加30至40间。他们还计划把业务模式推广到其它城市和国家,以充满创意的方式来连接社区,帮助艺术家。

Artwork by OT29
Artwork by Hideyuki Katsumata
Artwork by Jonjon Green

Address:
2-4-7 Koenjikita
Suginami, Tokyo
Japan

Website: bna-hotel.com
Instagram: @bnahotel

 

Contributor: George Zhi Zhao
Images Courtesy of BnA Hotel
Videos Courtesy of poweredby.tokyo


地址:
日本东京
都杉并区
高圆寺 2-4-7

网站bna-hotel.com
Instagram@bnahotel

 

供稿人: George Zhi Zhao
图片由BnA Hotel提供
视频由poweredby.tokyo提供

“Labyrinth” by Mondo Grosso

 

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Under the moniker Mondo Grosso, renowned Japanese producer Shinichi Osawa recently released his newest album, Nandodemo Atarashiku Umareru (Reborn Again and Always Starting New). The lead single from the album, “Labyrinth,” is a collaboration with vocalist and actress Hikaru Mitsushima who also stars in the accompanying music video. Directed by Takeshi Maruyama and filmed in Hong Kong – a location chosen due to how perfectly the complex and maze-like cityscape mirrored the “midnight paradise” mentioned in the lyrics – the video was edited to look like one continuous take, and in it, viewers follow Mitsushima (who comes from a dance background) as she effortlessly glides and twirls through Quarry Bay, Temple Street, and Sham Shui Po. The dreamy quality of the entire video was only made better by Hong Kong’s rainy season, with the rain-slicked streets reflecting the multitude of colors from Hong Kong’s neon-lit signs. Check out the video in full above.


《ラビリンス》(迷宮)是日本音乐人大沢伸一领衔的组合Mondo Grosso最新唱片《何度でも新しく生まれる》(无数次新生)中的主打单曲,由日本人气女星满岛光演唱。早前,摄制团队来到香港为MV取景,这座城市神秘复杂的夜色正符合了这首歌游荡于午夜迷宫的主题。曾是舞蹈组合成员的满岛光,在MV中大展舞技。导演丸山健志利用一镜到底的拍摄手法,让观众跟随着满岛光的舞步,穿梭于夜色下的鲗鱼涌、佐敦庙街和深水埗。MV于香港的雨季拍摄,雨后潮湿的地面反射出街道两旁霓虹灯的色彩,为画面增添几分迷幻的色调。点击观看上方视频,进入Mondo Grosso营造的梦幻迷城。

Website: mondogrosso.com
Instagram: @mondo_grosso
iTunes: ~/mondo-grosso

 

Contributor: Ye Zi


网站mondogrosso.com
Instagram@mondo_grosso
iTunes~/mondo-grosso

 

供稿人: Ye Zi

Hotel Okinawa

Greg Girard is a Canadian photographer who has spent the larger part of his career in Asia. His latest book, Hotel Okinawa, is a snapshot of Okinawan history and the legacy of U.S. military power, with photographs taken on U.S. military bases and their surroundings from 2008 to 2016. Supplemented by archival photographs, periodicals, and other historical materials, the book examines the changing social, historical, and physical landscape of a multilayered and complex region. In an excerpt from Hotel Okinawa below, Girard tells us more about the project.


加拿大摄影师Greg Girard在亚洲度过了他职业生涯的大部分时间。他最新出版的作品《Hotel Okinawa》(冲绳酒店),记录了日本冲绳的历史,以及美国在当地遗留下来的军事影响。书中主要包括了他在2008年至2016年期间在美军基地及其周围拍摄的照片,并辅以一些文献档案照片、期刊和其它史料。本书探讨了这个多层化的复杂地区中,不断变化的社会,历史和地理景观。在《Hotel Okinawa》中,Girard向我们介绍了这个项目。

Hazard to Aviation Checkerboard, Naha, 2008
Audrey Poster, 2008
A&W Drive-In, Route 58, 2016
Ginowan Overview, Dusk, 2009

“My first sighting of Okinawa came from the deck of a ferry, approaching the port of Naha after a 52-hour sailing from Tokyo. It was December 1982, and the tropical-ness I had looked forward to was nowhere to be found. I remember grey skies, rain, and cool temperatures. But I had long wanted to visit, hoping to see for myself what this Japanese honeymoon destination and U.S. military garrison island looked like.”


“我第一次看到冲绳是在一艘渡轮的甲板上,那是一艘从东京开往那霸港的渡轮,航程总共52小时。当时是1982年12月,我并没有看到预期中的热带景象。我只记得当时天空是灰暗的,下着雨,气温很凉爽。但我早就想来冲绳,希望能亲眼看看这个日本人蜜月胜地和美军驻军的岛屿到底是怎样的。”

USMC Camp Foster Base Housing, 2008
F-15 and AWAC Plane, 2008
Grady, Chatan, 2016

“Living in Tokyo in the 1970s, I unexpectedly encountered this vast network of U.S. overseas bases, of which Okinawa was, and remains, a part, via late night broadcasts of American Forces radio. Around this time, I also discovered Ryu Murakami’s first novel, Almost Transparent Blue, set in a town near a big U.S. air base west of Tokyo. He described a world where aimless young Japanese and young American servicemen partied, slept together, hung out, fought, and drifted apart, though not necessarily in that order.”


“上世纪70年代,我在东京生活时,意外在美军广播电台一档深夜节目中知道了美国的庞大海外军事基地网络,而冲绳正是其中的一个部分。大约也是在那个时候,我还发现了村上龙(Ryu Murakami)的第一部小说《接近无限透明的蓝色》正是以东京以西的美国空军基地附近的小镇为背景创作的。他在小说中,描述了漫无目的的日本年轻人和年轻的美国军人一起举办派对,一起玩,又互相战斗,然后慢慢疏远,大概是这样的故事。”

Man in Corvette reading "Star and Stripes", Okinawa, 2008
Family Housing, USMC Camp Foster, 2008
Watching Softball Game at Futenma Marine Corps Air Station, 2008

“But on that first short Okinawa visit, dodging the rain in the streets of the capital, Naha, I didn’t see much evidence of a local version of the scene Murakami had described. It was there, however. It was further up the highway in base towns north of the capital and being photographed, as I would later discover, by Japanese – including Okinawan – photographers. For myself, as far as these base towns went, I had been luckier in earlier years, making pictures closer to Tokyo, in Yokosuka, where the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet was (and still is) based. After a few sunless days, I left Okinawa on the twice-weekly JAL flight to Hong Kong; on board were a number of American military families, off to the British territory for Christmas vacation. My own Hong Kong visit ended up stretching into New Year, then the Lunar New Year and beyond, eventually making the city my home for the next fifteen years.”


“但是,第一次到冲绳短期旅游时,我在首府那霸的街头忙着避雨,也没有看到村上龙在书中曾描述的那种场景。然而,我后来发现,在那里沿公路往上走就是了,在那霸以北的小镇里,也是美军的驻扎地。曾有许多日本摄影师,包括冲绳本地的摄影师,到那里去拍摄。至于我自己,我在早些年挺幸运的,正巧在近东京的横须贺进行过拍摄,那里是美国海军第7舰队的基地(现在仍然是)。在度过了几天阴天之后,我乘坐每周两班的日航离开冲绳岛,飞往香港;在飞机上,有一些美国军人的家属,他们正要前往当时英国占领的香港过圣诞假期。我原本计划在香港的短期行程,后来一直延期到了新年,然后又过了中国的春节,最终,我在这座城市一直生活了十五年。”

Osprey and Marines, Camp Hansen, 2015
Protest House, Naha, 2012
Road Above Camp Lester, 2008

“I knew I wanted to return to Okinawa, but other decisions, other distractions, kept me occupied, and it would take more than 20 years before I was able to make pictures there again. During this period, a drawdown of US engagement in the region was taking place. Alliances were shifting or completely unraveling. The U.S. closed its bases in Vietnam and the last troops were withdrawn in 1973. Soon after, in 1975, the U.S.-backed South Vietnamese government collapsed. By 1976, the U.S. was forced to vacate bases in Thailand from where they had operated for more than a decade in support of the war in Vietnam. In 1979, following diplomatic recognition of Beijing, the U.S. closed its bases in Taiwan. Elsewhere in Asia, the U.S. had long operated a number of key facilities in the Philippines: Clark Air Base and Subic Bay Naval Base, in their day, were among the largest U.S. bases overseas. By 1992, those too were closed.”


“我一直都想重回冲绳,但是总会因为其它决定和事情而未能成行。20多年之后,我才有机会再次去那里拍照。在此期间,美国开始回撤在当地的军事力量。联军的关系在变化,或者说已经完全崩溃。美军关闭了在越南的基地,并在1973年撤回了最后的部队。不久之后,在1975年,美国支持的南越政府垮台。到1976年,美国被迫撤出在泰国的军事基地,在之前十多年间,他们在这里驻扎,以支持越南战争。1979年,美国与中国建交,美国又关闭了在台湾的基地。至于亚洲其它地区,美国曾长期在菲律宾经营多个重要基地:克拉克空军基地和苏比克湾海军基地,在当时,它们是美国其中两个最大的海外基地。到1992年,这两个军事基地也被关闭。”

Bar Interior, Okinawa City, 2008
Customers in Bar, 2016
Bar Interior, Sakura-zaka, Naha, 2016

“And so, in 2008, when I was finally able to undertake a project on ‘the bases’, their number was much reduced. The U.S. military presence in the region was now concentrated on bases in Japan and Korea, and on the U.S. territory of Guam in the western Pacific. The first step was to make formal requests (to the Pentagon and to individual bases). At last, in March 2008, with permissions in place, I was able to begin photographing. Within two years, I had photographed more than 20 separate bases, some numerous times.”


“因此,当2008年我终于接到一个有关这些美军‘基地’的项目时,这些基地的数量已经大大减少。现在,美国军事基地主要集中在日本和韩国,以及西太平洋地区,美国境内的关岛。我要做的第一步是(向美国五角大楼和相应的军事基地)提出正式请求。最后,在2008年3月,在获得这些地方的批准后,我终于可以开始拍摄了。在两年之内,我拍摄了超过20个美军基地,其中一些我还探访了好几次。”

Teishoku Marunaka, Okinawa City, 2016
Mt. Blanc Hotel, Okinawa City, 2016
Wooden Building, Naha, 2009

Previous publications by Girard include City of Darkness and City of Darkness Revisited, documenting Hong Kong’s infamous Kowloon Walled City, and monographs Phantom Shanghai and Hanoi CallingHotel Okinawa will be available for purchase from The Velvet Cell on August 15th.


Girard之前出版的作品包括记录香港臭名昭著的九龙寨城的《City of Darkness》和《City of Darkness Revisited》,以及《Phantom Shanghai》和《Hanoi Calling》。 《Hotel Okinawa》8月15将在The Velvet Cell发售。

"Home Base" Oden Restaurant, 2008
Grass/Plants/Neon, Chatan, 2016
Marine with Companion at USMC Birthday Ball, Okinawa, 2008

Websitegreggirard.com
Instagram: @gregforaday

 

Contributor: George Zhi Zhao


网站greggirard.com
Instagram@gregforaday

 

供稿人: George Zhi Zhao

Masayoshi Matsumoto’s Inflatable Art

Masayoshi Matsumoto is a 27-year-old artist who makes works of art out of a rather unexpected material; from hornets and caterpillars to walruses and buffalos, the Japanese artist uses nothing but multicolored balloons and his own two hands to create a variety of detailed insect and animal life that are as playful as they are inventive. By taking something that children love and applying his creative touch and imagination, he creates intricate masterpieces that adults can easily appreciate. His work shows that balloon twisting isn’t just merely a cheap party trick, proving that creative expression can – quite literally in Matsumoto’s case – come in any shape or form. See more of his work below.


27 岁的日本艺术家Masayoshi Matsumoto 用非传统的材料,创作出人意料的艺术作品。他只用了彩色气球和自己的双手,就塑造出栩栩如生的昆虫和动物“气球雕塑”,如黄蜂、蝴蝶幼虫,海象和水牛等。他发挥自己的创意和想像,将儿童最爱的气球运变成精致复杂的作品, 即使是成年观众也能欣赏得来。他的作品表明,扭气球不只是一种普通的把戏,创意的表达可以是多种形式的,正如他的作品那样,呈现也丰富的形态。下面一起来欣赏他的更多作品吧。

Tumblr: isopresso.tumblr.com
Instagram@isopresso_balloon
Twitter: ~/isopresso

 

Contributor: David Yen


Tumblr: isopresso.tumblr.com
Instagram: @isopresso_balloon
Twitter: ~/isopresso

 

供稿人: David Yen

New Japan Rising

Hulk Hogan. Stone Cold Steve Austin. The Rock. John Cena. These are the names that most people associate with professional wrestling, but that’s all about to change. Soon, there’s a good chance that names like Kazuchika Okada, Kenny Omega, and Tetsuya Naito will be first on everyone’s lips. Over the past decade, New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW) has risen from its lowest point like a phoenix from the ashes. Having re-conquered Japan, after a disastrous spell of mismanagement, NJPW dared to venture where no Japanese wrestling promotion ever has – the American market, long dominated by the multibillion-dollar monopoly World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE).


一说到职业摔角,大多数人可能会首先想到胡克·霍根,“冷石”史蒂夫·奥斯丁、“巨石”道恩·强森、约翰·塞纳这些名字。但他们称霸职业摔角的情况即将被改写,可能用不了多久,Kazuchika Okada, Kenny Omega和Tetsuya Naito这些名字就会取代他们的位置。在过去十年里,NJPW(新日本摔角联盟)如凤凰涅槃般,从低谷中重回巅峰,并大胆进军日本摔角之前未曾进入过的空白市场——美国。在美国,价值数亿美元的WWE一直垄断了美国市场。

Last year, Takaaki Kidani, who bought NJPW in 2012, made a statement of intent: “We are entering a phase where you are either with WWE or against them. WWE has a lot of weaknesses and time is not on their side.” Even if this assertion was slightly premature, New Japan’s G1 Special in USA this month was long overdue. The occasion marked the company’s first-ever independent tour of the US and the launch of its new United States Heavyweight Championship. Tickets sold out within hours, and the show boasted a rare champion versus champion bout, with the Ring of Honor World Champion, Cody Rhodes, taking on New Japan’s IWGP Heavyweight Champion, Kazuchika Okada. Rhodes believes the event, televised live on the American AXS TV network, will have “massive ramifications” for the entire industry. He says a “boom” is underway, but unlike the booms of the 80s and 90s, driven by the WWE and now-defunct WCW. “It’s happening elsewhere – it’s happened in these independents.”


2012 年,Takaaki Kidani买下了NJPW。而在去年,他曾经说过:”我们现在的处境是,你要么是站在WWE一方,要么就是他们的对手。WWE 存在很多问题,随着时间推移,情况也越来越糟糕。“ 即使这种说法有点太早下定论,但经过漫长的等待,NJPW的G1 Special in USA大赛也总算正式举办了。这场比赛标志着该公司第一次独立进军美国,是他们推出自己在美国的新重量级冠军的尝试。数小时内,门票就卖光了。这是一场很少有的冠军和冠军之间的比赛——由荣誉之戒(Ring of Honor)的世界冠军Cody Rhodes对阵NJPW IWGP重量级冠军 Kazuchika Okada。Cody 认为,这场由美国 AXS 电视网络实况转播的比赛,可能会对整个行业产生”巨大影响”。他说,新的摔角”热潮”正酝酿着爆发,但这与 WWE 和现已解散的 WCW 在80 年代和 90 年代推动的“热潮”不同,“这一次会发生在其它地方,由那些独立的摔角团体推动。”

In recent years, struggling to produce its own home-grown superstars, WWE has used its unparalleled revenue and exposure to poach talent from smaller promotions. While it succeeded in luring two of NJPW’s biggest stars, Shinsuke Nakamura and AJ Styles, there was one it could not seduce: the newly crowned United States Heavyweight Champion, Kenny Omega. Over the past two years, the Canadian has transformed himself from goofy anime character to international superstar, becoming the first foreigner to win the company’s annual month-long G1 Climax tournament, earning himself a shot at the prodigal Kazuchika Okada’s IWGP Heavyweight Championship. In January, he presented Okada’s greatest threat yet, on NJPW’s largest stage – the annual Wrestle Kingdom show – at the auspicious Tokyo Dome. The pair produced a 47-minute master class of technical wrestling and storytelling, seemingly beating each other half to death. Dave Meltzer, author of the weekly Wrestling Observer Newsletter, rated the match six out of five stars, adding: “Omega and Okada may have put on the greatest match in wrestling history.”


近年来,为了努力培养出自己的本土摔角巨星,WWE 利用自己令人难以企及的收入和知名度,从其它较小的机构中挖掘人才。它成功地将两名 NJPW 中最耀眼的摔角明星Shinsuke Nakamurat 和AJ Styles收揽旗下,但还有一名摔角明星拒绝了他们,他就是新任的美国重量级冠军Kenny Omega。在过去的两年间,这名来自加拿大的摔角选手完成了从搞笑的动漫人物到国际巨星的转变,成为这家公司中,第一个在为期一个月的年度G1 Climax 锦标赛赢得冠军的外国选手,获得与 Kazuchika Okada 争夺 IWGP 重量级冠军的机会。今年 1 月,在NJPW最大的舞台——在Tokyo Dome 举办的一年一度的 Wrestle Kingdom 比赛上,他成为了Kazuchika Okada 目前最大的威胁。在这场47分钟的比赛中,两位摔角选手给观众展示了一场大师级的激烈比赛,双方几乎要对手打到半死。资深的《摔角观察家周刊》(Wrestling Observer Newsletter)作者Dave Meltzer为这场比赛给出了 5 颗星的评分(满分6颗星),并写道:“Omega和Okada的这场比赛可能是摔角历史上最伟大的一场比赛。

What’s unique about NJPW is its “strong style” philosophy. Inoki, who founded the company in 1972, identified “strong style” as a combination of hard-hitting attacks, athletic prowess, and grappling. He declared the NJPW to be the “king of sports” and contended against athletes from different disciplines – even taking on Muhammad Ali, in a sensational, though farcical, MMA bout. In the ensuing decades, he was the chief architect of both NJPW’s success and its demise. As MMA was popularized in Japan, Inoki became obsessed with it, hiring cage fighters like Bas Rutten to compete in NJPW, and forcing New Japan talents to compete in MMA bouts. Wrestlers like Yuji Nagata, who won the 2001 G1 Climax tournament, were knocked out in seconds, humiliating and undermining not just them, but pro wrestling as a whole. 


NJPW独特之处在于它“强烈风格”(strong style)的理念。1972 年,Inoki 创立NJPW公司,并将“强烈风格”定义为有力的攻击、运动员般的身手和格斗技巧的组合。他宣称 NJPW 是“体育界的王者”,对不同领域的运动员发起挑战,甚至包括拳王阿里(Muhammad Ali),虽然那场比赛有点滑稽,但仍然是轰动一时的一场MMA比赛。在随后的几十年里,他既成就了 NJPW 的成功,也一手让它陷入低谷。随着MMA在日本推广开来,Inoki越来越痴迷于它,找来像 Bas Rutten 这样的笼斗战士(cage fighter)加入 NJPW比赛,并强迫NJPW的摔角手参加 MMA 比赛。但是,即使是像Yuji Nagata这样赢得过 2001 年G1 Climax 锦标赛的选手,也在几秒钟内就被淘汰,那不仅是选手,更是对整个职业摔角界的侮辱和伤害。

By 2004, Meltzer had branded NJPW the worst promotion in the world. Live attendances had halved, stars had deserted and the company was haemorrhaging money. In 2005, Japanese game developer Yuke’s bought up Inoki’s controlling interest and pushed him out of the company. The mantle then fell to wrestler Hiroshi Tanahashi, who, together with the company’s new bookers Gedo and Jado, threw MMA out the window and began developing stronger characters and stories, complete with compelling wrestling. In 2012, a cocky, 24-year-old Okada emerged from nowhere and challenged the now-legendary Tanahashi. The two battled for four years, before Okada emerged the new, beloved “Ace” – the number one. While today Okada embodies the ideal “strong style” wrestler, New Japan boasts a variety of other strong performers – from technical wizard Zack Sabre Jr. to high-flyers like Will Ospreay and Ricochet.


到 2004 年,Meltzer将 NJPW 品牌评为世界上最糟糕的摔角公司。观众减少了一半,摔角明星纷纷离开,公司资金大量流失。2005 年,日本游戏开发商Yuke’s买下了Inoki的控股权,并将他赶出了公司。公司的权力落到了摔角手Hiroshi Tanahashi手上,他和公司两位新“登记人”(booker)Gedo和Jado一起管理公司,他们放弃了 MMA比赛,开始发展更强大的人物和故事,招用更有说服力的摔角手。2012 年,骄傲自大的 24 岁Okada 突然冒了出来,挑战传奇选手Tanahashi。这两位选手苦战了四年,最终Okada获得胜利,成为最受欢迎的“Ace”选手。虽然今天的Okada也体现了理想的“强烈风格”的摔角手,但NJPW还拥有各种各样风格的选手,譬如拥有过人技术的 Zack Sabre Jr ,以及像Will Ospreay和Ricochet那样的高飞型摔角手(high-flyers)。

Despite their stylistic differences, many talented wrestlers have found a home in New Japan, where the craft is king. There are no gimmicks, no screwy finishes, no reality TV melodrama – just pure wrestling. Where WWE is blockbuster, NJPW is arthouse. NJPW’s promos feel more like boxing promos than soap opera segments, with few cuts to backstage or interference in matches. Japanese fans don’t respond well to the unfair finishes popular in WWE. They like to see which warrior is stronger, and, more importantly, who has the greatest “fighting spirit,” a nod to historic Samurai values. It’s a sentiment echoed by Omega, who calls the IWGP Heavyweight Championship “the most prestigious wrestling prize in all of professional wrestling.” On the contrary, he says WWE’s belt means nothing to him. “They pass around that belt like a hot potato. I probably have a neighbor on my block who held that belt at one point. There is no prestige to that belt whatsoever.”


尽管他们的风格各不相同,但他们都在NJPW找到自己的落脚点,在这里,技术是最重要的。没有噱头,没有奇怪的结局,没有真人秀那样的电视情节剧,只是纯粹的摔角运动。如果说WWE是商业大片,那么NJPW 就是一部艺术片。NJPW 的比赛更像是拳击比赛,而不是肥皂剧,很少会有后台镜头,也很少会在比赛期间出意外。日本观众不太喜欢 WWE 那种不公平的比赛结果。他们喜欢看到底哪个摔角手更强大,以及更重要的是,谁更有“战斗精神”,这一点受到了由来已久的日本武士价值观。Omega对这种观念深表赞同,他将 IWGP 重量级冠军称为“所有职业摔角比赛中最负盛名的奖项”。与此相反,他说 WWE 的冠军腰带对他毫无意义。“他们把那冠军腰带传来传去,仿佛那是烫手山芋一样。说不定,在我家附近的某位邻居曾经也拿到过这条冠军腰带。那条腰带现在已经没有任何威望。”

In the past six years, only four people have held the IWGP Heavyweight title. Rhodes, who failed in his attempt to take the belt from Okada, says it has the aura of “a Stanley Cup”. The title is only as strong as its holder, and Okada has held it for over a year, defeating all the company’s top talents, in varied and brilliant matches. While New Japan’s belts become more prestigious by the day, WWE CEO Vince McMahon seems to have gone the way of Inoki and lost touch with his audience. Belts and storylines are dropped on a whim with little regard for narrative. One such example is Jinder Mahal, who was considered a “jobber”’ – someone who loses all their matches – before he unexpectedly nabbed the WWE Championship. Widely seen as an attempt to appeal to the Indian market, the storyline left most viewers alienated. Meanwhile, WWE’s Brock Lesnar has yet to defend the Universal Championship title he secured in April. Okada, on the other hand, has fought to defend his title four times since then. In May, WWE’s flagship show, Raw, had its second-lowest rating ever and its biggest stars are starting to speak out. Veteran wrestler Big Show recently stated: “You sit around all day for some frickin’ idea that absolutely sucks.”


在过去的六年中,只有四人曾获得过 IWGP 重量级冠军的头衔。Rhodes曾试图从Okada争夺 IWGP 重量级冠军,但失败了,他认为这个冠军头衔相当于国家冰球联盟的最高奖项——史丹利盃(Stanley Cup)。这个冠军头衔和它的获得者的能力一样有份量,Okada保持 IWGP 重量级冠军的头衔已经一年多,在多场精彩比赛中,击败了公司里的其它顶尖人才。当NJPW的冠军头衔变得越来越有威望时,WWE 总裁Vince McMahon却似乎在重蹈Inoki当年的覆辙,并且离他的观众越来越远。冠军腰带的获得者和比赛的故事似乎都是心血来潮的决定,几乎不会考虑故事情节是否合理。譬如,Jinder Mahal之前一直被认为是“jobber”(指那结输掉所有比赛的人),但是他竟然突然就抢到 WWE 的冠军。大多数人认为这个结果是在讨好印度市场,但却让大多数观众感到难以理解。此外,WWE 的 Brock Lesnar 还没有进行过比赛,去捍卫他在 4 月夺得的环球冠军赛(Universal Championship)的冠军头衔。而另一方面,Okada 已经打了四场比赛,来捍卫他的冠军头衔。今年五月,WWE的主打节目《Raw》 获得了史上倒数第二低的评分,其最大的明星也开始抱怨。摔角手Big Show最近指出:“你整天坐在那里,就只想了一些糟透了的想法。”

New Japan may still have some way to go before reaching the 60,000-plus attendance and sold-out shows of its early-90s heyday, but its popularity is rising and its commercial appeal is broadening. This year, Wrestle Kingdom drew 26,000 people, a steady improvement on the 2007 low point of 18,000. Since 2012, revenue has quadrupled, and it is once again Japan’s largest promotion. Few would have imagined that New Japan’s first independent foray into the US, which sold more than 4,500 tickets, would become a social media sensation, trending first in both the US and UK. AXS TV, which broadcast the special live, first began airing replays of the Okada-Tanahashi rivalry in 2015 to test the waters. NJPW claims these shows were watched by 200,000 people, which would make it the second-most watched wrestling promotion in the US. AXS ordered more episodes in the lead up to this month’s live broadcast. With New Japan expecting to pull in $40 million next year, it seems that by rebuilding from the bottom up, the company has found itself in its most stable position ever. With increased income and exposure, the company will be better able to retain its talent going forward – especially if, like Rhodes, they prosper far more outside the WWE – financially or artistically. Though it would be best to avoid a head-on collision, NJPW may soon find itself the go-to promotion not just for talent who are fed up with WWE, but fans too. It might not win over everybody, but with the most prestigious belt, a gritty edge, and the best matches in the world, it won’t be long before hardcore wrestling fans flock over. Strong style is back, and it’s here to stay.


如果NJPW想要重回 90 年代全盛时期6 万多张门票的巅峰,可能还有一些路要走,但其受欢迎程度正在不断上升,它的商业吸引力也越来越大。今年,Wrestle Kingdom 吸引了 26000 名观众,对比于2007年的低谷 18000名观众已经在稳步提高。2012 年以来,这家公司的收入翻了两番,并再一次成为了日本最大的摔角组织。很少有人会想象NJPW首次独立进军美国会成为媒体的焦点,这场比赛卖出了超过 4500 张门票,快要成为美国和英国的第一名。直播这场比赛的AXS 电视台先是重播了2015年 Okada对阵Tanahashi的比赛,看看观众的反应。NJPW 宣称这场比赛吸引了20万人观看,这意味着它成为了美国排名第二吸引最多观众收看的摔角比赛。这个月的比赛直播之前,AXS计划重播放更多场比赛。NJPW 预计明年可以获得4000 万美元的收入。从低谷中逐步回升,可以说,现在这家公司已经到达了其历史上发展最为稳定的阶段。随着收入和曝光的增加,这家公司在将来应该能够更好地留住人才,特别是像Rhodes这样的选手,无论是在财政上或专业上,他们在WWE 之外都会有更好的发展。虽然最好能避免正面竞争,但NJPW可能很快吸引的就不仅是那些受够了WWE的摔角选手,还有观众。虽然它不太可能抢走所有的观众,但是凭借最负盛名的冠军腰带、激烈的风格以及世界上最精彩的比赛,过不了多久,那些铁杆摔角迷就会蜂拥而来。NJPW 的“强烈风格”会再次回归,并将获得成功。

Website: njpw1972.com
Facebook: ~/newjapaneng
Instagram: @njpw1972

 

Contributor: Hareth Al Bustani
Images Courtesy of New Japan Pro-Wrestling


网站njpw1972.com
脸书~/newjapaneng
Instagram@njpw1972

 

供稿人: Hareth Al Bustani
图片由New Japan Pro-Wrestling提供

What Makes a Selfie “Good”?

No camera angle magic, no flawless porcelain-like skin, and not even a hint of a smile – the selfies that Izumi Miyazaki takes often shows her looking unflatteringly solemn or completely emotionless. It’s clear that her rise to internet fame wasn’t the result of crafting a facade of beauty and perfection like the typical female internet celebrity. Instead, her devoted online following and feature in TIME magazine are the results of the absurdly and delightfully surreal self-portraits that she regularly uploads. Born in 1994, the Musashino Art University graduate uses Photoshop to expand on and exaggerate the possibilities of reality, creating a quirky and outlandish world of black humor where she touches on the heavy subjects of death, loneliness, and identity. “The tomato sauce coming out of my decapitated head represent my feelings towards mortality,” Miyazaki explains of the above image. “The imagery is meant to present a positive attitude towards death. It’s the same with the photo of my head being cut in half with a fish, I wanted to share my feelings in a comical way.” Scroll down to check out some more of Miyazaki’s self-portraits.


没有黄金45度仰拍,没有无暇的蛋壳肌,甚至连一丝笑容都没有,总以一副严肃甚至有点呆滞的表情出现在镜头前。日本少女Izumi Miyazaki就是以她与众不同的超现实自拍照走红于网络,甚至登上了美国《时代周刊》。Izumi Miyazaki1994年出生于日本山梨县,就读于武藏野美术大学。她利用Photoshop放大了现实世界的可能性,营造出古怪荒诞的个人世界,用冷幽默的画面去传达她对孤独、死亡和身份认同等话题的理解。“脑袋里流出的番茄酱是我对于死亡的态度,这种意象有点乐观又有点滑稽。”在介绍自己作品的时候Izumi Miyazaki这样讲到,“被劈开的生鱼和脑袋也是这样,我想用喜剧的方式去呈现死亡。” 下面一起看看Izumi Miyazaki的更多“迷之自拍“。

Website: izumimiyazaki.tumblr.com

 

Contributor: Ye Zi


网站: izumimiyazaki.tumblr.com

 

供稿人: Ye Zi

Cities & Places with Ryota Unno

Shibuya
(1400 x 2800 mm)

Ryota Unno is a Japanese artist whose work brings a playful and contemporary twist to traditional Japanese scroll painting. A graduate of the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Japanese Painting, Unno is influenced by the art of the Edo period and employs traditional techniques in his creative process. Using traditional materials, such as iwaenogu (mineral pigments) and gold foil, on Japanese paper, Unno tells colorful stories about life in modern society set in cities across the world. His work has been exhibited in Japan, as well as internationally in the U.S., Hong Kong, Brazil, Italy, Taiwan, and Singapore. See below for more of the artist’s work.


日本艺术家Ryota Unno 以现代和俏皮的风格重新演绎了日本的传统卷轴画。Unno毕业于东京艺术大学,并获得了日本绘画美术的学士学位。他深受江户时代艺术的影响,喜欢运用传统绘画技巧来进行创作。Unno在日本纸上使用“岩绘具”iwaenogu(一种天然矿物颜料)和金箔等传统材料,以色彩丰富的画面展现出世界各地城市现代社会生活的故事。他的作品曾在日本,以及美国、香港、巴西、意大利、台湾、新加坡等地展出。下面一起来欣赏一下这名艺术家的更多作品吧。

A Mafia Loves Hot Springs
(600 x 720 mm)
Washington, D.C.
(1400 x 1400 mm)
Washington Park
(800 x 400 mm)
Central Park
(1400 x 700 mm)
Miami
(1400 x 2100 mm)
Chinzanso
(1400 x 2800 mm)
Tower Life
(1400 x 1400 mm)
Chelsea Market
(800 x 560 mm)

Website: unnoryota.jimdo.com

 

Contributor: George Zhi Zhao


网站unnoryota.jimdo.com

 

供稿人: George Zhi Zhao