July.08

MA-GO-WA-YA-SA-SHI-I

Newest Posts

July.08

MA-GO-WA-YA-SA-SHI-I

July.08

MA-GO-WA-YA-SA-SHI-I (Grandchildren are kind) This acronym helps speakers of Japanese remember the names of food groups that support a healthy diet. Each of the seven sounds represents a food group, while the total spells out a lovely adage (lauding the kindness of grandchildren). MA refers to mamé (beans), GO refers to goma (sesame… and other…

June.17

Junsai, a summertime delicacy

June.17

JUNSAI (water shield; Brasenia schreberi) grows naturally in lakes, ponds and slow streams in many parts of the world but only Japan and China have a long history of cultivating the plant as a food. The Japanese especially love foods with a tsuru tsuru (slippery, slithery) texture and young, unfurled junsai sprouts covered in a…

Apr.26

HIROSHIMA: CITY OF CRAFTSMANSHIP by Mazda’s Zoom-Zoom and Steve Beimel

Apr.26

Zoom-Zoom sent Japanophile Steve Beimel to meet some of the craftsmen and craftswomen in Mazda’s home city, Hiroshima. Words Steve Beimel / Images Eric Micotto Though fine craft traditions exist around the world, there may be no country that exceeds Japan in the sheer number and depth of master-level disciplines, truly rarefied expressions of the human…

Jan.25

‘The Tokyoiter’, a Double Homage by Pen

Jan.25

This collective offers illustrators the chance to represent the Japanese capital by adapting the style of covers from ‘The New Yorker’. With regard to press illustration, the publication that has long been considered an international reference is The New Yorker, founded in 1925. Across the world, graphic designers have since paid homage to the American magazine,…

Jan.19

Elizabeth Andoh: A Taste of Culture – MISO SOUP

Jan.19

Like many foods the Japanese currently enjoy, its likely that miso originated in China and traveled by way of the Korean peninsula arriving in Japan in the 6th century,  In the Heian Period (794-1185 AD) miso was considered a precious medicine. By the 12th century, nutrient-dense miso became an important part of the samurai’s daily…

Dec.22

Elizabeth Andoh: A Taste of Culture – KUMQUATS

Dec.22

Kumquats are called kinkan 金柑 in Japanese, meaning “golden citrus.” The scientific name is Citrus japonica, though the fruit is native to south-east China where they have been cultivated for hundreds of years. There are dozens of varieties of kumquats. The round Marumi and Meiwa are the most popular in Japan while oval-shaped Nagami fruits are more…

Nov.25

Kishio Suga on Paper by Pen

Nov.25

Alongside the first-time English publication of his essays, an exhibition on the Mono-ha artist surveys his extensive work on the medium. Kishio Suga’s sculptures and installations are muted, simple in their elements. But after close observation, one may notice the hidden truths of our surroundings beginning to articulate themselves. An exhibition running from January 15…

Nov.20

The Art of ‘Rakugo’, Sit-Down Comedy by Pen

Nov.20

Inherited from tales by Buddhist preachers and now secularised, this solo performance involves a storyteller making the audience laugh. Rakugo, which literally translates as ‘art of fallen words’, is making a comeback on Japanese stages. Dating back to the 17th century and originating from Buddhist tradition, rakugo experienced its heyday in the Meiji era (1868-1912) and particularly…

Nov.15

The Moon and the Printing Masters by Pen

Nov.15

The white star is particularly celebrated in Japan and has inspired various artists, whose works are featured in this leporello. The moon occupies a special place in Japanese society, one that Anne Sefrioui’s book, La lune par les grands maîtres de l’estampe (‘The Moon by the Great Printing Masters’), seeks to examine. This set, made up of…

Nov.07

Elizabeth Andoh: A Taste of Culture – POTATOES

Nov.07

The potato is native to the Americas; the Incas are believed to have been the first to cultivate wild tubers along the Andes Mountain range. The Incas boiled, roasted, and fermented potatoes; they also dehydrated them to extend storage. In the mid-16th century, gold-seeking Spanish Conquistadors brought the spud to Europe, and from there it…