Main Menu

Pinnacle of Elegance: Sword Fittings of the Mitsumura Collection

The soft-metal fittings affixed to Japanese sword mountings became increasingly more detailed and decorative from the Edo period onwards with flamboyant works that in some cases is hard to believe they are even metal. Mitsumura Toshimo (1877 - 1955), a businessman in the Meiji period, built a large collection of sword fittings and published them in a monumental tome entitled, Tagane no Hana (Flowers of the Chisel).
This exhibition introduces the metallic beauty that fascinated Mitsumura Toshimo, with around 130 sword fittings, as well as a selected number of swords and paintings.

Session: Friday, November 3 through Sunday, December 17, 2017
Place:Nezu Museum
Admission:JPY1,300 StudentsJPY1,000

【画像】刀、月山(がっさん)貞一(さだかず)(初代)作、日本・明治38年(1905) 根津美術館蔵 (光村利藻旧蔵)

SSBC seminar

The Society for the Study of British Culture (SSBC) is hosting a lecture by Mr Hiroshi Shibuya (lawyer/judicial scrivener/Advisor, Japan Whisky Research Centre), who will talk in Japanese about British bespoke tailoring.

Date: Saturday, 18th November (1430-1630)
Place: Chuo Univ. Surugadai Kinenkan Room 320
Price: JPY2,000 for SSBC and JBS members
To book, please contact SSBC Fax: 03-3407-8995

Theatre Performance: One Green Bottle

Hideki Noda is the artistic director of the Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre, and is a leading playwright, director and actor in Japanese contemporary theatre.
Along with Kathryn Hunter and Glyn Pritchard, Noda will be starring in the Japan premiere of “One Green Bottle” this autumn at the Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre.
In its portrayal of the collapse of a family, this fiercely funny yet horrifying play examines the contemporary world’s obsessions, lack of imagination, and intolerance.
The performance will be in an English translation by Will Sharpe, an up-and-coming UK writer and director who now has his own TV series, “Flowers”, on Channel 4.

Dates: 29th October until 19th November
Place: Theatre East, Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre
Price: Adults JPY6,000、65 and over JPY5,000、25 and under JPY3,000、high school students and under JPY1,000
To book, please contact the box office of the Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre.
Tel: 0570-010-296 (1000-1900 except on days when the theatre is closed)

Film: Their Finest

1940, London, the Blitz. With the country’s morale at stake, Catrin (Gemma Arterton), an untried screenwriter, and a makeshift cast and crew work under fire to make a film to lift the nation’s flagging spirits and inspire America to join the war.
Partnered alongside fellow screenwriter, Buckley (Sam Claflin) and eccentric actor Ambrose Hilliard (Bill Nighy), the trio set off to make a film that will warm the hearts of the nation and capture the imagination of the American population.
Based on Lissa Evans’s novel ‘Their Finest Hour and a Half’, this film is a witty, romantic and moving portrayal of a young woman finding her way, and her voice, in the mayhem of war.

Showings start on 11th November at Shinjuku Musashinokan, Human Trust Cinema Yurakucho, and others.


DVD: Miss Saigon: 25th Anniversary

This DVD was produced to mark the 25th anniversary of the musical 'Miss Saigon' with a live performance at London's Prince Edward Theatre. It includes a bonus 35-minute "25th Anniversary Gala" recording.

The DVD goes on sale on 6th October. DVD JPY3,800 (excl. tax), Blu-ray JPY4,700 (excl. tax)
NBC Universal Entertainment Japan.

The Golden Age of Botanical Art
Flowers from the Collections of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

The first of the “Intermediatheque Natural History Series,” this exhibition is a unique opportunity for audiences in Japan to appreciate 28 botanical artworks from Kew’s great collection, in the form of a partnership between the University Museum, the University of Tokyo and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Free of charge

Dates: 16th September until 3rd December (closed on Mondays)
Time: 1100-1800 (open until 2000 on Fri & Sat)
Place: Intermediatheque 2F GREY CUBE

Rhododendron arboreum (Rhododendron, Ericaceae)
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

Joint International Project with the British Museum
Hokusai - beyond the Great Wave

北斎 富士を超えて
The British Museum’s acclaimed exhibition “Hokusai - beyond the Great Wave,” which was held in London earlier this year, will be shown at the Abeno Harukas Art Museum in Osaka in October and November.
For further details please see

Dates: 6th October until 19th November (closed 10/10,16,23,30,31)
Place: Abeno Harukas Art Museum (Abeno Harukas 16F 1-1-43 Abenosuji, Abeno-ku, Osaka)
Price: Adults JPY1,500
   Univ. & High School Students JPY1,000
   Junior High & Elementary School Students JPY500

《富嶽三十六景 神奈川沖浪裏》 天保1〜4年(1830〜33)頃 大英博物館
©The Trustees of the British Museum. Acquired with the assistance of the Art Fund.

Fear in Painting

Kyoko Nakano (writer, Germanist) wrote Kowaie (Fear in Painting) in 2007, which discusses some famous paintings featuring images of fear. In relation to this book, an exhibition will be held, including “The Execution of Lady Jane Grey” from the National Gallery in London.

For further details please visit

Dates: 7th October until 17th December
Place: Ueno no Mori Museum (The Ueno Royal Museum, 1-2 Ueno Koen, Taito-ku )
Price: Adults JPY1,600
   Univ. & High School Students JPY1,200
   Junior High & Elementary School Students JPY600

Paul Delaroche, The Execution of Lady Jane Grey, © The National Gallery, London. Bequeathed by the Second Lord Cheylesmore, 1902 

David Shrigley: Lose Your Mind

The Art Tower Mito is holding Japan’s first large-scale solo exhibition of the work of acclaimed British artist David Shrigley, who works in a wide range of media, including drawing, animation, sculpture and photography. The provocative title of the exhibition, “Lose Your Mind”, can be seen as an expression of the unique sense of humour that is present in all of Shrigley’s works.
The exhibition, presented in partnership with the British Council, will comprehensively introduce for the first time in Japan the diverse activities of the artist as he gently undermines the seriousness of art through his drawings, darkly humorous animations, surreal sculptures, and conceptual works.
Additionally, a balloon replica of his public artwork “Really Good”, which has gained much attention since its unveiling in Trafalgar Square in autumn 2016, will have its world premiere at the exhibition.

Dates: Saturday, 14th October until Sunday, 21st January 2018
Place: Art Tower Mito (Mito, Ibaraki)
Price: JPY800, Free for Junior High School Students and under or seniors over 65 years old

デイヴィッド・シュリグリー ダチョウ 2009 Courtesy Artist and the British Council Collection 撮影 Stephen White

Violin Recital by Michiko Kobayashi

London-educated violinist Michiko Kobayashi has been introducing pieces by British composers to Japanese audiences since her debut in 2004. Kobayashi has won numerous awards in Japan and abroad, including the silver medal at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.

Programme: The Lark Ascending (Vaughan Williams), Violin Sonata K.302 (Mozart), Violin Sonata No.1 in G minor BWV1001 (Bach), etc.
Time & Date: 1400, Sunday, 26th November
Place: Tokyo Opera City Recital Hall
Price: JPY4,000 (non-reserved seats only)
Reservations: Tokyo Opera City Ticket Centre Tel 03-5353-9999 (1000-1800, closed on Mondays)

Windsor Chairs British chairs admired by Japanese

Windsor chairs are thought to have originated in central southern England in the 17th century. Made entirely of wood, they were admired by such eminent Japanese as Soetsu Yanagi, Shoji Hamada, Keisuke Serizawa and Sanshiro Ikeda, and they are recognized in Japan as representative pieces of Western furniture.
Nihon Mingeikan’s upcoming exhibition features both English Windsor chairs and many other examples of wooden furniture.

Dates: Thursday, 7th September until Thursday, 23rd November (closed on Mondays)
Place: Nihon Mingeikan (The Japan Folk Crafts Museum)
Price: Adults JPY1,100、university and high school students JPY600、junior high school students and children JPY200

コムバック・アームチェア イギリス 18世紀 高106cmX幅57.5cmX奥72cm 日本民藝館蔵

Enjoying Articles in English

A group of JBS members meet once a month to read articles from English journals and newspapers, have free discussions, and enjoy casual conversation.
Any member of the Japan-British Society is welcome to attend.
Please contact the Secretariat for further information.

Date: Third Thursday of each month, 11:00-12:30
Place: Meeting room, Japan-British Society Office
Fee: Free
Chairperson: Dr. Yoshiharu Mae
Graduated from the Department of Nuclear Engineering, University of Tokyo in 1966; worked in research for a metal company; recent publications include A Story of Copper and Aluminum [book] and Metallurgical and Materials Transactions A [ASM International, Dec. 2016]

© The Japan-British Society