Who are the brightest Japanese writers, translators and artists at work today?
With the eyes of the world on Tokyo 2020, Japan Now returns for its finale, exploring the big issues with writers, translators, filmmakers and artists.
A keynote day of talks. Please find the schedule below:
10.30 Doors open
11.05 – 12.15
Hiromi Itō and Naoko Nobutomo
Two of Japan’s leading artists discuss how the personal becomes political through their work. Hiromi Itō is one of the most prominent women writers in Japan, described as a ‘shamaness’ in her writing about sexuality motherhood and the body. She will read alongside her translator Jeffrey Angles. Filmmaker Naoko Nobutomo’s documentary I Go Gaga My Dear mixes documentation of her mother’s dementia with intimate home movies against the backdrop of Japan’s ageing society.
12.35 – 13.45
Yukiko Motoya and Hiroko Oyamada
Yukiko Motoya’s first book in English, Picnic In The Storm, makes the familiar strange through a series of short stories that upend reality; from salary men being swept skywards by their umbrellas, to a married couple morphing into one another’s bodies. Motoya is joined by Hiroko Oyamada, whose novel The Factory depicts a dystopian world, where the boundaries between work and leisure are erased to disturbing psychological effect.
13.45 – 14.45 Lunch break
14.45 – 15.45
Tomihiko Morimi’s fiction brings the magic of Kyoto to life through his magic-realist stories, including Penguin Highway and The Night is Short, Walk on Girl, newly translated into English. Morimi is a major figure in Japanese culture, whose work has been adapted into hugely popular works of anime film.
16.00 – 17.15
Tomoko Sawada is a photographer and performance artist whose work explodes assumptions about gender roles and cultural stereotypes, from a strongly feminist perspective. Included in numerous group shows in Japan and internationally, Sawada uses photography and techniques of performance art to explore ideas of identity, status and society and conformity.
Programmed by Modern Culture with lead partners the Japan Foundation and the University of Sheffield
Supported by Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation, the National Centre for Writing, Arts University Bournemouth and the Japan Society