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Best of the Web

This week, I encountered a few different projects out of Tokyo that I found amusing and wonderfully executed.  Tokyo is a very photogenic city that seems to be filled with visual stories at every turn.  These projects offer varying points of views highlighting different aspects of the city’s personality.

Salaryman Project

The Salaryman Project by Bruno Quinquet is a series of inventively composed street photographs from throughout Tokyo.  The photography and concept are multi-layered and well-timed.  I found the photos intriguing and liked how each of them left me wanting to know more.

Tokyo Compression

Michael Wolf’s photos made me laugh and feel so tired at the same time.  They speak volumes about the culture and lifestyle of the Japanese people without having to spell it out.

‘Jiro Dreams of Sushi’

This is a documentary on Jiro, a 85-year-old sushi master and national treasure in Japan, renowned as the world’s greatest sushi chef and the first sushi chef to be awarded three Michelin stars.  The story is wonderfully woven, portraying his passion as it tells of his family, life and dreams.  It is an affecting story, well paced and beautifully crafted.

Fruits — Japanese street fashion

I had to toss this in if I was going to focus on Japan.  About eight years ago when I was there, I picked up a magazine called Fruits, which offers photographs of amazing Japanese kids in the Harajuku district. These kids are so creative with their wardrobe it’s almost unreal and begs to be stared at. I have a zillion questions for them: What inspires you? Where are you going in that?, etc.  I love it just because it’s fun –and obviously a source of inspiration for a lot of artists (I’m thinking Lady Gaga in particular).

BONUS: Jay-Z Rides the Subway

I had to throw this one in because it’s so cute.  I always thought Jay-Z was cool, but this short video made me think a bit more of him. That said, the woman is definitely is the star in this one.

Photos: Top left: A scene from Bruno Quinquet’s Salaryman Project; top right: A selection from Michael Wolf’s Tokyo Compression; bottom left: A screengrab from the documentary “Jiro Dreams of Sushi”; bottom right: Minori, a well-known personality in Tokyo’s shironuri scene, from a  Flikr photo stream by Tokyofashion. 

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