This year's lucky four artists for EWAL Artist in Residence in Kyoto 2017 were selected and now arrived in Kyoto safely.
The first photo (from left, Larissa, Lauren, Jan and Paul ) was taken at front of Nijo Castle which is very near to their accommodation.
They will stay in Kyoto and Tokyo for two weeks (or more for option) and look forward to see traditional and modern Japan.
They will send us their diaries together with some photos so we will report here almost live so please visit this site to see what they saw and how they felt in Japan. They expect to attend some workshops in Kyoto as well as visit many traditional places in Kyoto, Nara and Tokyo.
Paul Dominic and I arrived yesterday in Kyoto. Paul arrived from Manchester, Dominic from Gdansk and myself from London and we were met by Yuki, the coordinator in Japan for EWAAC.
This morning, we walked to the fine arts shop on Karawamachi Dori via the bank of the Kamo river. Many people were strolling on the river banks to admire the blossoming cherry trees. We stopped for breakfast in a little outdoor fair and enjoyed the mild weather, the river views and some street food (yakitori= small pork kebabs) . As we bought coupons for the food, we had to participate in a lucky draw and we won...the 1st prize! Yes! A 3000-yen voucher to spend in one of the restaurants by the river. Is'nt it a good omen ? In the afternoon, we visited the Chion-in temple, erected in 1234, near the hermit Honen Shonin's place. After many fires, none of the original temples remain. The current buildings have been rebuilt in the XVII century. Outside the temple lay the grounds of the Maruyama park: we strolled among families and couples (many wearing the kimono ), groups of young people, enjoying the food stalls, the beautiful cherry trees and as the sun set, the lighting of the paper lanterns. Dominic had a go at the good luck tree ( you pick a piece of paper with your date of birth, there is a prediction written on it and if it is good you tie it up to the branch of a cherry tree). In the evening, back at the residence, we were welcomed by a delicious diner of sushi, tofu omelette and meat cakes prepared by Yuki and Tomoko, who works at the Jarfo Gallery. Later we were joined by Jo who runs the Jarfo Gallery and by two artists, Chikako Hosoma, who currently exhibits at the Jarfo Gallery and Kenseki Honjo, a calligraphy master. We presented ourselves and our work and we all admired Dominic's portfolio. We also discussed the program for the next two weeks and it all seem very exciting. Yuki left for Kobe after diner and she will come back to Kyoto next week-end to help us organise our exhibition.