Christmas in Japan is like Christmas in many other countries, more about by consumerism than any tradition or even religion. Families usually spend Christmas together (after work of course) with a cake and some grilled chicken, while young adults or those unattached prefer to spend Christmas eve with their sweethearts. To lure this attraction seeking young crowd many shopping centers put on light displays and events, the most popular of which are so crowded that people have to cue up to get in. There was supposed to be a huge light display at Tokyo station but when the managers understood the huge numbers of people who were likely to show up the event was actually cancelled! I happened to walk through Tokyo Midtown in the Roppongi district on Christmas eve and saw these christmas decorations. While the decorations inside the big commercial center was focused on abstract shapes there were some cute hand decorated snowmen!
Every summer Tokyo Midtown in Roppongi puts on a lot of special activities, this year it’s a water and lights show at nights and a place to cool your feet at day. Or you can just hang out in the garden with food and drinks. It’s been an extraordinarily hot summer here in Tokyo, not many days below 35 degrees and even the nights are unbearably hot, so these water mist fountains and streams of fresh water really helps! Tokyo Midtown is located between Roppongi station and Nogizaka station.
The last few weeks have been exceptionally rainy here in Tokyo and while passing Tokyo Midtown the other day in pouring rain I saw these decorations outside the Tokyo Midtown main tower in Roppongi. It’s a bit late to take part in the celebrations but there might still be a few events going on into late May!
In 2010 one of the foremost women’s art universities in Japan started a new program in sculpture and I think Nana Koutzuka (江塚奈々) is one of their first graduates, exhibiting this wonderful statue called Chimera (キメラ) at the National Art Center earlier in March. It’s an amazing work and I really hope to see more of her work in the future! The title of course is an allusion to the mythical beast of ancient greek legends, the Chimera, but also the same word is used in modern Japanese science to denote a creature made up of parts of different creatures, as in this mix of farmyard animals. I wonder if we will ever see a real on of these?