May 2022 Message from the Executive Director

Last week the Sainsbury Institute visited two superb exhibitions in London: Kyôsai: the Israel Goldman Collection at the Royal Academy, and Japan: Courts and Culture at the Queen’s Gallery, in Buckingham Palace. We thank the curators, Koto Sadamura, our own Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Fellow, and Rachel Peat, of the Royal Collections Trust respectively. In the UK we are looking forward to celebrating the Platinum (70th) Anniversary of the coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, with a special holiday in early June. How wonderful to have this exceptional exhibition telling the story of the British royal family’s engagement with Japan to help celebrate this unprecedented anniversary. Later this week […]

Teaching, Travelling, Research

Zoe Shipley writes about her experience after finishing the MA I feel very lucky to have been part of the inaugural cohort of SISJAC’s MA in Interdisciplinary Japanese Studies and I thoroughly enjoyed the entire course. Simultaneously, I tried to teach myself Japanese and I quickly realised that to attain anything like proficiency, I needed to be living in Japan. I was therefore extremely fortunate, particularly during a period of Covid lockdown, to be accepted onto the Japanese government’s JET program which places graduates in assistant English teaching jobs throughout Japan. A small window of opportunity allowed me to fly to Tokyo at the end of November 2021, where quarantine […]

Nara to Norwich: art and belief at the ends of the Silk Roads, AD 500-1100

Later this month our Executive Director Simon Kaner and Andy Hutcheson, Research Fellow in our Centre for Archaeology and Heritage, will be speaking, albeit online, at the Annual Meeting of the Japanese Archaeological Association, at the invitation of the Japanese Journal of Archaeology. We will be using the opportunity to launch the first part of our new online exhibition, Nara to Norwich: art and belief at the ends of the Silk Roads. Our Nara to Norwich initiative, exploring the relationship between art and religion through a comparative study of the adoption of Buddhism in Korea and Japan and the conversion to Christianity around the North Sea, was originally intended to […]

Why be polite when you can be Kyōsai?: Report on the talk “Spontaneous and Playful: Kawanabe Kyōsai as a Performer”

Listening to Dr Koto Sadamura’s rich visual lecture on a 19th century Japanese painter (a must watch for those who missed it), it occurred to me that being an artist is, perhaps, like being a translator. To a large extent, artists translate their interpretation of reality into some form of creative expression in a language that others can relate to. It requires certain skills, experience, and a distinct voice that defines who you are as the expert. One man with a voice like no other is Kawanabe Kyōsai, an academically trained artist who turned commercial and rocked the 19th century Japanese art world.   Kawanabe Kyōsai (1831-1889) demonstrated his exceptional […]

Online Summer Programme in Japanese Cultural Studies

Save the Date: 3rd Online Summer Programme in Japanese Cultural Studies: “Tourism and Heritage in Post-Lockdown Japan”, 1 – 12 August 2022 We are pleased to announce that the Centre for Japanese Studies at the University of East Anglia will once again host its Online Summer Programme in Japanese Cultural Studies, to run from 1 – 12 August 2022. Now in its third year, the programme was conceived as a temporary replacement for our in-person summer schools which were prevented due to the Coronavirus pandemic. However, the programme has attracted incredible interest from across the globe, demonstrating a strong appetite for Japanese Studies internationally. This edition of the programme considers […]