MAPS 2018 printmaking exhibition series

In 2018, three Maine communities will host a show of prints by artists from Maine and Aomori, Japan.  The traveling exhibition is part of MAPS (Maine-Aomori Printmaking Society), organized by Friends of Aomori as a cultural exchange program, sharing art and artists between the sister states of Maine and Aomori.  The prints will be exhibited in Green Lion Gallery in Bath, Arundel Farm Gallery in Arundel, and the University of Maine in Orono, while the same collection is exhibited at multiple locations in Aomori prefecture, from April to October.

MAPS3-Goodale-300wide
Rebecca Goodale, “Peaches & Tiger Moths”

This 2018 series of exhibitions builds on the successful series of exchanges and exhibitions held since 2015 in both countries, now numbering thirteen shows in varied locations throughout both states. Coinciding with the inaugural 2016 exhibition, Pickwick Independent Press — an independent print studio located above the galleries in the Space Studios in Portland — hosted Japanese printmakers for a week-long printmaking residency. The residencies were supported by a grant from the Consulate-General of Japan in Boston, and included time for the artists to work in the studio, visit local galleries and museums, and deliver a workshop at Maine College of Art.

MAPS is organized by Friends of Aomori, an all-volunteer non-profit that supports the Sister State relationship between Maine and Aomori, Japan. The relationship between Maine and Aomori has been in place for 20 years, but the fascinating connection between the two states goes back to a shipwreck in 1889 (read more here: https://maine-aomori.org/about/). In addition to MAPS, Friends of Aomori supports high-school exchange programs, educational events and programming about Japan, and economic development opportunities such as a delegation visit of Maine fisherman and aquaculture business leaders to Aomori in October 2016.

MAPS3-Tanaka-300wide
蓮のある風景
“Scenery of a Lotus Pond”
田中 定男
Sadao Tanaka

MAPS 2018 features prints by: Jeff Badger, Lyle Castonguay, Julie Crane, Rebecca Goodale, Don Gorvett, Adriane Herman, Charlie Hewitt, Isaac Jaegerman, Junji Kimura, Mitsuo Konno, Yoshiko Takebayashi, Tatsuo Maeda, Scott Minzy, Yoshiko Munakata, Akihiro Sakamaki, Hiroko Shibutani, Sadao Tanaka, Jaime Wing, and Seizo Yagihashi.

 

MAPS will be on view at Green Lion Gallery in Bath, Maine from April 20th – May 19th, with an opening reception on April 20th; Arundel Farm Gallery from May 26th to June 16th with a reception on May 26th; and at the University of Maine in Orono from Oct 5th – Nov 16th, with an opening reception on October 5th.

Printmaking workshops and social events will coincide with the exhibitions, Please visit the websites and Facebook pages of the galleries and Friends of Aomori for details. MAPS is made possible with generous support from Ocean House Gallery and Frame.

MAPS3-Maeda-600wide
残雪のある風景
“Scenery in
remaining snow”
前田 龍夫
Tatsuo Maeda

 

 

11/10/2017 Word of The Week 必需品

hitsujuuhin foa

Friends of Aomori presents 必需品 (ひつじゅひん/hitsujyuhin) which means essential item. This word is especially important as we enter the winter months, there are many 必需品 specifically helpful when dealing with cold weather! 

The first kanji that makes up this word is, 必 (kunyomi: かならず/kanarazu onyomi: ヒツ/hitsu) which means inevitable and certain. The second is, 需 (onyomi: ジュ/jyu)  which means request or need, and the final kanji is 品 (kunyomi: しな/shina onyomi: ヒン or ホン/hin or hon) which means article or goods. 

Fall Foliage in Aomori

While Maine is in its peak season of fall foliage, and encountering the subsequent stream of leaf-peeping tourists, Hirosaki Castle Botanical Garden in Aomori, Japan is gearing up for its annual Chrysanthemum and Autumn Foliage Festival which runs from October 20th through November 12th. During this event, the Garden is filled with different events for visitors, including craft-making, boat rides, petting zoo, apple pie tasting, and many other Autumn related activities.  There is also an ‘Autumn Foliage Light Up’ where the garden is open late (until 9pm) and the trees are lit-up in the night by outdoor lights in order to accentuate the bright colors.

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Photo retrieved from : Hirosaki Tourism and Convention Bureau 

Of course, the Hirosaki Castle Botanical Garden is not the only place to see the fall foliage of Aomori; in fact, there are many viewing locations scattered throughout the region! Perhaps the most well-known viewing location is the Oirase Gorge, a National Natural Monument and National Scenic Place of Beauty located in Towada-Hachimantai National Park .  With the thick forest and roaring waterfalls of the Oirase Gorge, hikers can experience fall foliage in an untouched, wild environment far away from the hustle and bustle of Hirosaki City.

oirase_stream_fall_foliage_aomori
Photo Credit: Tak H. at Flickr

For information on more areas to view the Fall Foliage in Aomori Prefecture, or to learn more about the two highlighted here, please click on the links below!

Hirosaki Castle Botanical Garden:

http://www.hirosaki-kanko.or.jp/en/edit.html?id=autumn-foliage

https://www.en-aomori.com/culture-044.html  

Oirase Gorge:

https://www.en-aomori.com/scenery-002.html

Other Places:

https://www.en-aomori.com/tag/autumn

https://www.kyuhoshi.com/2017/07/18/best-places-to-see-autumn-leaves-in-aomori/

Hokkaido Releases Instructional Manga, About Recent Missiles.

Aomori’s neighboring prefecture Hokkaido has released a four page Manga entitledミサイルが飛んできたときには (When a Missile Flew) by Manabu Yamamoto, instructing citizens on what to do incase of another Missile launch from North Korea. Click Here to read more in an article from Japan times.

foa missle

The full four-page Manga is available on the Hokkaido Government website, which can be found Here.

Rice Paddy Art in Inakadate, Aomori, Japan

Did you know growing rice could be a form of fine art!?

In Inakadate Village, in Aomori prefecture you can visit enormous images constructed from different kinds of  rice. The images reference Japanese culture by evoking mythologies and sometimes even popular culture!

Visit the link below for more information on the imagery, how they are constructed, and tourism information.

Rice Paddy Art Info.tanbo art

There are new Rice Paddy images every year, so include these magnificent creations in your future Aomori travel plans.

Vending Machines in Japan, Art and Innovation

The culture surrounding vending machines is very different between Japan and America. Check out the JapanTimes article linked below to learn about how one Japanese photographer, Eiji Ohashi, explores the relationship the people of Japan have with vending machines.

In Japanese vending machine is 自動販売機 (Jidohanbaiki) but is often shortened in conversation to 自販機 (Jihanki)

Follow this link to read the article!

For an in depth understanding of Japan’s vending machines and their history watch the following short documentary from NHK world’s series Begin Japanology. Did you know that you can get hot drinks and even fresh, hot food from a Vending Machine?