Seminar: Tuesday 29 April 2014
The third seminar in our 2014 series on “Power”. In the previous seminar, we discussed “soft power”, and the panel concluded that a combination of hard and soft power, namely ‘smart power’, is the most effective way to influence other states in the contemporary world. But what can a weaker state with limited hard power (military force) do to deter other states? Can the international community be effective in pressuring stronger powers like Russia to change course without resorting to hard power? How can the diplomatic efforts of the international community be made effective?
Seminar: Tuesday 6 May 2014
The town of Arita in Saga prefecture is one of the most famous centres for Japanese porcelain. Dating its production back to 1616, it will celebrate its 400th anniversary in 2016. The first porcelain from Arita that was exported to Europe in the 17th century was welcomed with enormous enthusiasm. The porcelain, having travelled across the sea to Europe, became more highly treasured than gold, and was exported to various countries, having a major influence on European art and culture. Shuko Noda, a garden designer, will talk about his concept and objectives in introducing this historical ceramic ware into garden designs as a member of Team SAGA, an entry in the Artisan Division of the 2014 Chelsea Flower Show.
Book launch: Tuesday 13 May 2014
This book examines the Japanese culture of the Muromachi epoch (14-16 centuries) with Ikkyū Sōjun (1394-1481), a celebrated monk and poet, as its focal point. Ikkyū’s contribution to the culture of his time was all-embracing and unique. He can be called the embodiment of his era, given that all the features typical for the Japanese culture of the High Middle Ages were concentrated in his personality. The book also discusses in great detail Ikkyū’s religious and ethical principles, as well as his attitude towards sex, and shows that his rebellious and iconoclastic ways were deeply embedded in the tradition.
Talk: Thursday 15 May 2014
A Thousand Cranes theatre company was founded in 2006 by performer Kumiko Mendl and director Vicky Ireland MBE. Combining Vicky’s lifelong passion for children’s theatre and interest in Japan with Kumiko’s childhood memories of living there, they decided to create a company dedicated to bringing the many fascinating stories, artists and culture of Japan to young audiences in the UK.
Private view: Tuesday 20 May 2014
Based on the subject of physicality and topicality within the delirious metropolis, Toru Ishii’s first solo exhibition in the UK aims to achieve a hybrid of expression in elements such as the past and present and the digital and analogue. He challenges how traditional art can exist in this modern age, and attempts to find a new paradigm of art by employing long-established techniques.
Artist talk: Tuesday 17 June 2014
Based on the subject of physicality and topicality within the delirious metropolis, Toru Ishii’s first solo exhibition in the UK aims to achieve a hybrid of expression in elements such as the past and present and the digital and analogue. He challenges how traditional art can exist in this modern age, and attempts to find a new paradigm of art by employing long-established techniques. The artist is joined by Professor Lesley Millar, Professor of Textile Culture and Director of the Anglo-Japanese Textile Research Centre at the University for the Creative Arts.