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Manga: colour and style at the British Museum

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Date: Friday 5 July 2019
Time: 17:00 to 21:30
Venue: Great Court and Galleries, The British Museum, Great Russell Street,
London WC1B 3DG
Tickets: Free event. No tickets required except for Studio Ghibli screenings and access to the Manga マンガ exhibition. 

On Friday 5 July 2019 Japan House London collaborated with the British Museum on a Friday Late event, Manga: colour and style. Celebrating manga, art, fashion and design, the event welcomed the Japan House pop-up sake bar in the Great Court, serving an array of sake from DASSAI in Yamaguchi Prefecture.    

Workshops and activities

The free event coincided with the British Museum’s Citi exhibition Manga マンガ and offered visitors the chance to explore the gallery after-hours and experience a diverse range of manga-inspired events. Manga drawing workshops were facilitated by award-winning artist Kutsuwada Chie, Shangamola Edunjobi and Elena Vitagliano, while Time Out and podcast Ghibliotheque presented a screening of Studio Ghibli’s much-loved animation ‘Pom Poko’.

Japan House sake bar

The Japan House sake bar introduced three varieties of sake to guests, including DASSAI 23 Hayata, an exclusive bottle designed by Kansai Yamamoto and Anna Sui. DASSAI’s president, Sakurai Kazuhiro also attended the event, answering questions and serving cups of DASSAI sake to those who frequented the pop-up bar. Japanese food stalls also served an array of dishes in the Great Court throughout.

Manga-themed fashion presentations

Throughout the night the Great Court was flooded with colour during manga-inspired fashion shows from students at UAL (University of the Arts London), coordinated by Arts SU. The eye-popping pieces were designed by students from the London College of Fashion and Central Saint Martins, alongside six Japanese fashion and art schools and in conjunction with Japanese fashion legend Kansai Yamamoto. Models wearing mesmerising layers of fabrics, colours and textures descended the stairway of the Great Court and out onto a catwalk. The theme of fashion continued with a discussion between celebrated British contemporary artist Grayson Perry and Kansai Yamamoto. 

Cosplay parades

Organised by London's Hyper Japan festival, cosplayers from around the country gathered at the Musuem for this event, emerging on to the catwalk dressed as characters from popular anime and manga series in a dazzling collision of fashion and fantasy.

The soundtrack for the event was provided by Shimada Manabu, as well as shamisen – a Japanese three-stringed lute – player Ichikawa Hibiki and electronic artist DJ TAKAKI. 

Event collaborators

This event was presented as part of the UK – Japan season of Culture 2019-2020. Event collaborators included Arts SU, Kansai Yamamoto, Japan House, University of the Arts London, Bunka Fashion College, Esmod Japon, Tokyo Mode Gakuen College of Fashion & Design, Musashino Art University, Educational Institute Suginogakuen and Vantan Design Institute. The Citi exhibition Manga マンガ is at the British Museum until 26 August. Find out more and book tickets here