For two decades, a statue of Buddha sat alone at the Makomanai Takino Cemetery in Sapporo, Japan. More recently, architect Tadao Ando built a man-made covering all but the top of the statue’s head, hiding the rest of the religious icon inside an observation gallery beneath a lavender-covered hill.
Nexus Studios and director Hideyuki Tanaka created this wild and wonderful promo spot for a Japanese tourism campaign back in 2004. The clip features a flock of ostriches as they take to the ski slopes, fully embracing their gangly and awkward bodies as they head down the snowy mountainside, and into the city.
Masayoshi Matsumoto is no birthday party balloon artist. Nope, his specialty is creating complex balloon animals that belong in an art gallery. His inflatable sculptures require many more bends and twists than typical balloon art, resulting in greater detail and realism. Check out his YouTube channel for tutorials.
What you’re looking at here might look like some delicious sushi, but you definitely don’t want to bite down on it unless you’re ready to chip a tooth. Japanese artist ha_ma_73 makes incredibly accurate sushi replicas by carving and polishing stones. What’s even more amazing is that those are natural stone colors, not paint.
Waxwork Records presents an incredible collection for die-hard Godzilla fans, this box set includes all 15 film soundtracks from Japan’s Showa era, remastered for vinyl. The 18-record set features amazing new artwork by Robert Sammelin, 180-gram colored vinyl, a collector’s slipcase, a storage box, a slipmat, and more.
We previously got a brief aerial view of the Super Nintendo World attraction that’s coming to Universal Studios Japan. Now Mario’s creator Shigeru Miyamoto takes us inside the park for an in-depth tour of some of its main attractions. We love all the movement in the exterior design. The park is slated to open 2.4.2021.
LEGO Certified Professional Jumpei Mitsui created a 3D interpretation of the wave depicted in Hokusai’s iconic Ukiyo-e image The Great Wave off Kanagawa. The brick-built version shows off some really neat LEGO tricks, especially with the foamy wave peaks. The 50,000-piece model is on display at the Hankyu Brick Museum.
Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Japan is slated to open in early 2021. From the looks of this flyover of the park, it’s going to look amazing when it’s all done, transporting Nintendo fans into the heart of their favorite games. We spy Peach’s and Bowser’s castles, a Mario Kart ride, and a Toad House among other details.
Well before Power Rangers or TNMT, Ultraman was a live-action TV series, establishing a new type of sci-fi adventure, kitschy kaiju characters, salarymen superheroes, and sparkly special effects. Rarely broadcast in America, it’s now streaming on Pluto TV with select titles on-demand on Shout! Factory TV.
This unique wristwatch from TokyoFlash Japan features a display inspired by an graphic equalizer. But instead of displaying audio frequencies and volume levels, its green dots light up to indicate the current time and date. The oversized watch uses an LED-backlit LCD panel to create the effect. Available with a black or silver case.
Classicbot toy designer Philip Lee and his wife, artist Mary Chang have teamed up to create a beautiful series of enameled metal pins based on the artful manhole covers found throughout Japan. There are 16 designs in all, along with a Ukiyo-e inspired wall scroll for display. Each pin measures 2″ in diameter.
Made in Japan, the Goshi is a scrubby shower towel woven from a combination of lathering and exfoliating threads. It helps to wash away dirt, oil, and dead skin, keeping you cleaner than you’ve ever felt. It’s made from a long-lasting 100% recyclable nylon. Discounted multi-packs available direct from Goshi.
Based on the manga by Daisuke Igarashi, Children of the Sea tells the story of a girl who feels drawn to the waters at the aquarium where her dad works. As she meets two other children with similar experiences, they come to find that fish are mysteriously disappearing from oceans around the world. Drops 8.31.20.
If you’ve ever lost an item in a big city in the U.S., there’s a slim chance you’re ever getting it back. Speaking from experience, it’s the opposite if you lose something in Tokyo. Great Big Story takes us inside of the city’s massive and well-organized Lost & Found center for a look at how the Japanese respect other people’s property.
Video technician Denis Shiryaev of Neural Love took some early 20th century film footage from Tokyo, Japan, and processed it to increase its resolution and frame rate, repair damage, and add colorization. The result is sort of a living postcard of the time and place. The ambient sounds were previously added by Guy Jones.
For fans of the work of Studio Ghibli, their museum in Japan is one of the most elusive and desired places to visit. With travel limited these days, they decided to post a series of videos which show off of the museum, including murals, stained glass, drawings, and exhibits of the celebrated animation studio’s history.
Japan has distilled shōchū for 500 years, with iichiko setting the gold standard, but iichiko Saiten is a new kind of higher proof shōchū made specifically for mixology. Co-created with U.S. bartenders, the clear, pot-distilled spirit is rich in citrus, melon, and pepper notes, derived from two-row barley and fermented koji.
“Be aware to trim your nose hairs, cause they could put up a fight!” Japan’s state of emergency has been lifted after their initial bout with COVID-19. To both cautiously celebrate, and to remind people to be diligent, disinfectant company SMV Japan released this silly animated music video. Japanese version here.
Japanese electro-punk group Electronicos Fantasticos is known for making music with unusual instruments. In this clip, musician Ei Wada shows off an electronic guitar known as the “CRTelecaster” that uses feedback created from the screen of an old CRT television set to produce sounds. More CRT goodness here.
After a beautiful woman drops her handkerchief, mountain bike trials rider Tomomi Nishikubo heads off on a rather circuitous route to find her in this amusing freestyle action video shot around Tokyo. We loved the bits of humor scattered throughout, especially the pit stop scene.
Sushi Ramen Rick is a tough guy, like it really rough guy. At least that’s what we got out of his goofy cover version of Billie Eilish’s hit that he made primarily using sounds produced by smacking himself about, and a weird musical instrument that looks like something from a Blue Man Group x Dr. Seuss collaboration.
Japan loves their KitKat bars. They make them in all kinds of flavors, like green tea, melon/mascarpone, strawberry, and many more. Now taste some of these unusual variants here in the states with this pack of 21 mini bars, all imported from Japan. Amazon also has all kinds of other flavors if you’re feeling adventurous.