Join Friends of Aomori for a get-together at Oxbow Blending and Bottling in Portland on Tuesday, May 21st from 5:30 to 8:00 pm. We will celebrate Spring with raffles for local restaurant gift cards, a print sale, and delicious Oxbow beers. All proceeds go to fund our 2019 and 2020 programming, including the Maine-Aomori Printmaking Society exhibitions, student print exchange, high school exchange scholarships, and an upcoming artist delegation visit to Japan!
Berwick Academy, partnering with Friends of Aomori, is pleased to host Hashi / 橋, the second annual Maine-Aomori student print exchange exhibit at Berwick Academy’s Jackson Library Gallery in South Berwick, Maine from March 27-April 12, 2019. Hashi means “bridge” in Japanese.
This exhibit will feature over 70 prints made by students in Aomori, Japan. Raegan Russell, Visual Art Chair and art teacher at Berwick traveled to Aomori as a teacher delegate in November, 2018 and that trip sparked this exhibition.
We hope to see you there!
The second annual Children’s Print Exchange between the students of Maine and Aomori had its official opening at the Munakata Shiko Memorial Museum in Aomori this past weekend! Shared below are the newspaper feature and it’s annotated translation.
We hope to see you at the upcoming reception here in Maine at Berwick Academy (see this post for the show details)!
Thank you to our partner Ono-san at the Munakata Museum for this annotated translation of the Newspaper Article shown above:
This past September, Raegan Russell was chosen after an open call for applications from art teachers in Maine who would be interested in both representing Friends of Aomori on a Delegation visit to Aomori, Japan, and leading the creation of the next installment of our Children’s Print Exchange. Raegan’s visit to Aomori was completed this past Sunday (November 18th, 2018) and now her and her Berwick Academy students will soon begin working on their woodblock prints! These prints will be sent to Aomori in February, the same time that we here in Maine will receive the prints from the Japanese students (exhibition location TBA).
Attached below are some pictures Raegan shared from her visit; it certainly seems that a wonderful time was had by all!
You can also read a brief Japanese statement about the Delegation visit on this website: https://www.toonippo.co.jp/articles/-/114623
Stay tuned to this website as well as our Facebook Page for more updates on the 2019 Children’s Print Exchange!
The Fourth Annual MAPS Exhibit has received a wonderful reception at the Munakata Shiko Memorial Museum of Art in Aomori, Japan! We will be posting updates on the Fourth annual MAPS Exchange as they come, so stay tuned. There are many exciting things happening here at Friends and we can not wait to share them with you!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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:
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.
The full four-page Manga is available on the Hokkaido Government website, which can be found Here.
For this Word of the Week, Friends of Aomori presents 文化 (ぶんか/bunka) which means culture. Culture is especially important to Friends of Aomori, as we aim to share the culture of Maine and Aomori!