Japan: Art and the Olympics

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By BBC and BBC World Service. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.
As the Olympics start in Tokyo, we’re focusing on Japanese artists who are examining history, re-inventing tradition and telling new stories. Visual artist Meiro Koizumi tells presenter Mariko Oi about the importance of capturing lost war stories and his artistic take on the Olympic torch relay. Koizumi’s prize-winning video installation The Angels of Testimony brings to life the darker side of Japanese history. Centred around a 99-year-old veteran’s experiences of perpetrating violence in China during WWII, young people are filmed performing his shocking words on the streets of Tokyo. Studio Ghibli is one of the biggest names in animation, famous for films such as My Neighbour Totoro and the Oscar-winning Spirited Away. Since the company’s founder Hayao Miyazaki retired in 2014, his son, Goro Miyazaki has emerged as a new leading creative force at the iconic Japanese anime house. Our reporter Anna Bailey speaks to Goro ahead of the release of his third film, Earwig and the Witch. Japanese singer Hatis Noit creates atmospheric, multi-layered music using her soulful voice. One of her most haunting tracks is the piece she created in response to the Fukushima disaster. She performed the piece, Inori, at a ceremony when many of the evacuated residents were allowed to return home. Hatis talks to Mariko about her belief in the power of the human voice and her musical tribute to Fukushima. As international teams gather in Tokyo to compete, one artistic project is representing more than 200 countries in the form of Kimono. Every traditional Japanese robe has been beautifully crafted to reflect the climate, culture and countryside of each place. Designer Maki Yamamoto speaks about the details and purpose of the Imagine One World Kimono Project. Presenter: Mariko Oi Producer: Lucy Collingwood, Anna Bailey, Kirsty McQuire (Photo: Shop curtains, themed on sports and culture, and produced by six overseas artists who competed in the Olympics and Paralympics are displayed at an underground passageway ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games on July 19, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. Credit: Toru Hanai via Getty Images)

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