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‘Private Rehearsals’ – A Virtual Reading new
Conjuring A Sense of Movement - Japanese Graphic Designers And Sports Posters new
UK-JAPAN Bridge Together Project
Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk Exhibition at the V&A

‘Private Rehearsals’ – A Virtual Reading   org

The Japan Foundation London in partnership with Fabula Collective presents the virtual reading of ‘Private Rehearsals’ 

‘Private Rehearsals’ is a contemporary, satirical take on the Alexander Dumas fils story, ‘The Lady of The Camellias’, written by TAOSHITA Tetsu and adapted by Oladipo Agboluaje. It is a play about the lies we tell ourselves, how and who we perform them for and the complicated reality of love and art in crisis.

We are inviting you to the first ever rehearsed reading online, which will take place on 3rd of September 3pm BST.

To secure your space please follow the link below.

Date: 3 September 2020 from 3.00pm

For more information, please click here.
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Conjuring A Sense of Movement - Japanese Graphic Designers And Sports Posters   org


Japan has been the birthplace of a significant amount of talent in the field of graphic design. From book covers to product packaging, their high-quality and imaginative designs have kept inspiring the world and, as a result, imprinted many names in design history. This innovative spirit may be particularly noticed in poster design. With fresh and ground-breaking aesthetics, the outcome quite often exceeds a mere tool of communication.

Ahead of the postponed TOKYO2020, the Japan Foundation will hold a special talk focusing on Japanese posters which were created for sports or sporting events since the time of the previous Tokyo Olympics in 1964.

With help from the DNP Foundation for Cultural Promotion which collects numerous graphic treasures, the inhouse curator, KITAZAWA Eishi, will talk about the significance in aesthetics and functionality of sports posters, introducing iconic names such as KAMEKURA Yusaku who played an important role as a post-war graphic designer in Japan, while discussing how such designs reflected the social and artistic developments at the time.

Following his talk there will be a discussion with Dr Sarah Teasley, a specialist in Japanese design and its histories.


About the speakers

KITAZAWA Eishi, born in Nagano prefecture in 1958, graduated from the Faculty of Literature at Keio University and joined Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd in 1980. Since 1991, he has been in charge of the ginza graphic gallery (ggg). In 2008, the activities promoting graphic design and graphic art have been taken over by the DNP Foundation for Cultural Promotion; since that time, as a member of the Foundation, Kitazawa has also been in charge of the kyoto ddd gallery. As a curator, he has planned and held more than 300 exhibitions introducing both domestic and international artists.


Sarah Teasley is a social historian who works at the interface of history and design research, and a specialist in histories of design in modern and contemporary Japan. Most recently, she was Reader in Design History and Theory and Head of Programme for History of Design at the Royal College of Art. She received her PhD from the Department of Interdisciplinary Cultural Studies of the University of Tokyo. She has published extensively on design and making in Japan, including 'Design and Society in Modern Japan', a special issue of the Review of Japanese Culture and Society (2017).


This talk is made possible thanks to the help of the DNP Foundation for Cultural Promotion.


Image credits (left to right):

Victory 1976, Shigeo Fukuda, 1976

World Table Tennis Championships 2015, Yuri Uenishi, 2015


Please note that this session will be hosted on Zoom.


To book your place, please visit:

Date: 2 September 2020 from 12.00pm

For more information, please click here.
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UK-JAPAN Bridge Together Project   org


UK-JAPAN Bridge Together Project: Sakubei Yamamoto Coal Mining Paintings World Tour

As part of the Beyond 2020 programme, the Bridge Together Project is exhibiting the coal mining paintings of Sakubei Yamamoto which have been registered as a UNESCO Memory of the World – the first Japanese artefacts to receive the honour. The exhibition will tour cities around the world in the lead up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympic Games.


Date: 4 October – 15 November 2019

Venue: Embassy of Japan, 101-104 Piccadilly, Mayfair, London W1J 7JT


Date: 14 September 2019 – 30 September 2020

Venue: Big Pit National Coal Museum, Pontypool NP4 9XP, Wales

Sakubei Yamamoto Coal Mining Paintings World Tour

Date: 4 October 2019 - 30 September 2020

For more information, please click here.



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Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk Exhibition at the V&A   JPsupported
Fashionable brocade patterns of the Imperial Palace, woodblock print, made by Utagawa Kunisada, 1847-1852, Japan. Museum no. Circ.636 to Circ. 638– 1962. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London
Fashionable brocade patterns of the Imperial Palace, woodblock print, made by Utagawa Kunisada, 1847-1852, Japan. Museum no. Circ.636 to Circ. 638– 1962. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Stunning 17th-century Japanese garments, international haute couture and costumes from Star Wars come together in a major V&A exhibition on kimono fashion.

The V&A has created Europe’s first major exhibition on kimono. The ultimate symbol of Japan, the kimono is often perceived as traditional, timeless and unchanging. Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk will counter this conception, presenting the garment as a dynamic and constantly evolving icon of fashion.

The exhibition will reveal the sartorial and social significance of the kimono from the 1660s to the present day, both in Japan and in the rest of the world. Rare 17th and 18thcentury kimono will be displayed for the first time in the UK, together with fashions by major designers and iconic film and performance costumes. The kimono’s recent reinvention on the streets of Japan will also be explored through work by an exciting new wave of contemporary designers and stylists.

Highlights of the exhibition include a kimono created by Living National Treasure Kunihiko Moriguchi, the dress designed for Björk by Alexander McQueen and worn on the album cover Homogenic, and original Star Wars costumes modelled on kimono by John Mollo and Trisha Biggar. Designs by Yves Saint Laurent, Rei Kawakubo and John Galliano will reveal the kimono’s role as a constant source of inspiration for fashion designers. Paintings, prints, film, dress accessories and other objects will feature throughout the exhibition, providing additional context to the fascinating story of the style, appeal and influence of the kimono. Over 315 works will be featured, including kimono especially made for the show, half drawn from the V&A’s superlative collections and the rest generously lent by museums and private collections in Britain, Europe, America and Japan.

Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk begins in the mid-17th century when a vibrant fashion culture emerged in Japan. The increasingly wealthy merchant classes demanded the latest styles to express their affluence, confidence and taste, while leading actors and famous courtesans were the trend-setters of the day. The simple structure of the kimono focussed attention on the surface, allowing for the creation of sumptuous patterns using sophisticated techniques. The first section of the exhibition will explore these designs and shine a light on a fashion-conscious society not dissimilar to today’s, in which desire for the latest look was fed by a cult of celebrity and encouraged by makers, sellers and publishers.

Kimono were first exported to Europe in the mid-17th century, where they had an immediate impact on clothing styles. Foreign fabrics were also brought to Japan and incorporated into kimono. Rare survivors from this early period of cultural exchange, including garments made in Japan for the Dutch and kimono tailored from French brocade and Indian chintz, will be displayed to reveal the fluid fashion relationship between East and West that resulted from the global trade network.

The late 19th century saw a world-wide craze for Japanese art and design. Kimono bought from department stores such as Liberty & Co. in London were worn by those wishing to express their artistic flair. Japan responded by making boldly embroidered ‘kimono for foreigners’, while the domestic market was transformed by the use of European textile technology and chemical dyes. The kimono’s biggest impact on western fashion came in the early 20th century, when designers such as Paul Poiret, Mariano Fortuny and Madeleine Vionnet abandoned tightly-corseted styles in favour of loose layers of fabric that draped the body.

The final section of the exhibition will show how the kimono has continued to inspire fashion designers around the world. The potential of the garment to be translated and transformed is seen in designs by Thom Browne, Duro Olowu and Yohji Yamamoto. The kimono’s timeless, universal quality has also made it the ideal costume for film and performance. The display will include the outfit worn by Toshirō Mifune in Sanjūrō, Oscar-winning costumes from Memoirs of a Geisha, and the Jean Paul Gautier ensemble worn by Madonna in her video Nothing Really Matters. Japan itself is currently witnessing a resurgence of interest in kimono. Jōtarō Saitō designs kimono couture for the catwalk, Hiroko Takahashi seeks to bridge the divide between art and fashion, and more casual styles are created by small, independent studios such as Rumi Rock and Modern Antenna.

Anna Jackson, curator of Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk at the V&A, said: ‘From the sophisticated culture of 17th -century Kyoto to the creativity of the contemporary catwalk, the kimono is unique in its aesthetic importance and cultural impact giving it a fascinating place within the story of fashion.’


Captured just before the V&A museum closed it's doors for lockdown, follow the Japan Foundation supported exhibition Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk as its curator Anna Jackson leads an intimate 5-part tour through the exhibition spaces, providing a behind the scene look at the show, star exhibits and the history of the kimono.

Take a deeper look at all five parts by following the links below:

Part 1    Part 2    Part 3    Part 4    Part 5

Date: 27 August 2020 - 25 October 2020

For more information, please click here.
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