Asahi Beer (Factory, Ibaraki)

MJG Guides, Japan 8 Comments

Asahi Beer is the juice that Japan runs on- it fuels the salarymen and the office ladies alike, keeping them lean, mean, and ready to work 18 hour shifts until karoushi (death by over-work) drives them into the ground. Asahi is the beer in a silver can- its most distinguishing feature by far. Kirin and Sapporo in their gold and …

Asahi Flame, Asakusa

MJG Architecture 6 Comments

The Asahi ‘Flame’ building on the Asakusa banks of the Sumida river is infamous in Tokyo for its eponymous ‘flame’, a huge golden piece of art juxtaposed atop the obelisk-like black building; intended to represent the freedom and grace of a good head of foam on a glass of Asahi beer. It has however been dubbed by many the ‘flying …

Weekly Links

MJG Uncategorized 0 Comments

Gorilla Artfare– Some great apocalypse art: This same scene is rendered in four ‘seasons’ on the site. Red Bubble– Ruins in the desert, awesome: Tells a story in an image. Or begins a story… Neils Valentin– Digital matte paintings for the movie ‘Strings’- gorgeous. Now I want to see this movie ‘Strings’. I came across all these desert ruins images …

The Book of All

MJG Science Fiction, Stories 0 Comments

I’m a cripple. Always have been. I was born with one of the latest cerebro-spinal disorders, unpleasant off-shoot of muddled genetic manipulation in vitro. My father was one of the leading scientists in the field at the time. He was also a drunk. My name is Dr. Pario Souder. I’ve been tied to a chair my whole life. My voice …

Big Sight Anime Fans

MJG Japan, Manga / Anime / Cosplay 18 Comments

Once a year Anime fans from all over the world descend on Tokyo Big Sight in Odaiba for the huge Tokyo International Anime Fair, filled out with cosplayers garbed as their favourite cartoon characters, live banjo shows and coming movie previews, gundam statues, huge parade balloons of anime favourites, stalls selling pillows printed with manga stars, scarcely dressed sword-wielding plastic …

Tokyo Big Sight, Odaiba

MJG Architecture 7 Comments

Tokyo Big Sight in Odaiba is one of the biggest exhibition spaces in Tokyo, featuring two huge halls East and West plus several conference rooms and a 1,100 seater auditorium in the main building- which is curiously shaped out of four upside-down pyramids. Why is it shaped out of four upside-down pyramids? Nobody knows. I suppose this is another case …

Weekly Links

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The Venus Project– Visionary site with lots of futurist ideas and art, underwater cities and cool designs. Draw Me a Sheep– Cool art/design site, featuring square trees. Rassouli– Great aspirational art, I’ve used two now for story headers- Universal Time and Cullsman #9. It’s ostensibly Christian mythos art, but you wouldn’t know that to look at it.

Yoyogi’s Yukinko Akira

MJG Heaven Artists, Japan 11 Comments

Yukinko Akira is a funky beats-master artist, skinny and frantic and one heck of a showman. He performs regularly at the fountains in Yoyogi Park, his own unique brand of frenetic dance moves, dance beat remixes, and exhilarating yawps and whoops, all the while constructing some dystopic work of art which he signs, rolls up into a poster case, and …

Weekly Links

MJG Uncategorized 0 Comments

TIME– Photos of the collapse of Detroit. NewsWeek– Headless in Tokyo- why are Japan’s leaders so weak? NewsWeek– Learning to live with Radical Islam. -Fareed Zakaria. Mike’s Blender– Mike’s take on Nichitsu ghost town. TED– The haikyoist Miru Kim explores the ruins of NYC in the nude- here she talks about it at TED. She calls it ‘urban exploring’- the …

Deathwatch

MJG Science Fiction, Stories 5 Comments

It’s a beautiful day already. The sun is up and dawning like a golden rip in the pewter and orange sky, leaking rays of light across the blue ocean and bridge. Everything is still. It’s a beginning, the start of a new day. Strange thing is, everything that matters is already over. The man lies pinioned to the grindstone of …

Kasai Rinkai Power-Kiters

MJG Japan, People / Culture 3 Comments

At the edge of Kasai Rinkai park off Tokyo Bay there’s a narrow sliver of sand-bar land perfect for kiting. Stunt kites soar and rip through the air like carbon-fibre assassins, paper-kites ruffle and chuckle in the wind, ‘let’s go fly a kites’ sputter and trail their ribbon-dangled threads behind them as their owners race their dogs and kids against …