Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Japan: Tokyo day 2

I have traveled to Japan along with my good friend and owner of Strychnin Gallery Yasha Young who is behind the production of my next project about Japanese ghosts and demons. We have come to Japan to gather the materials and inspirations to put the show together. The exhibit will be next June with a sneak peek into the project this fall at Art 21 in Cologne Germany in which I will premiere a few pieces. For the next 3 week we will gather images and thoughts of our travels to share on this here blog. We will both be posting images and text of our adventures throughout our voyages in Japan.
We both hope you will enjoy this peek into our trip and spark some anticipation of the works to come over the next year.
We arrived 2 days ago(the 22nd) to a seriously humid and rainy season.

After settling in and getting provisions, we rested up and began the exploration of the city of Tokyo. We met up with the first of my would be models, Fujiko, who is also a renowned DJ and I look forward to the shoot with her. I was too preoccupied with my soba and tempura to get a photo of her at lunch but I will share that after the shoot with her. We met her after a stroll through Roppongi with sudden and scattered rain showers.

I am now just trying to stay awake after filling my belly with fried jack mackerel and tempura at home. I just wanna see the world cup, since now its on at night rather then when I wake up in the morning.

Our apartment is actually bigger then I expected and thank the lord has air conditioning. The area is 白金高輪駅(東京)..i mean Shirokane Takanawa and is quiet and pleasant.
There are a few shrines and temples right off our street. I cannot wait to see more!

Ahhh finally we have arrived - after about 20h of travel and one super nice virgin atlantic flight attendant who had a constant supply of tea with honey for me I touched down Narita airport with and snotty nose and one bag less due to Heathrow stop over - no surprise there.....! Now all I needed to do was wait another 6 hours for David to arrive and finally after delay after delay there he was !!!! Tired, sweaty but happy and ready to get on we took the Limousine buss through tokyo and than a very cute cab (!) to our apartment in Midtown Tokyo. After such a long day the temperatures outside this beautiful little place with air condition, fridge and shower for ridiculous $$$$ was worth every penny !! A quick shower and out we were to go to Peacock supermarket. You quickly learn that eating healthy might be expensive in NYC when buying organic but I mean one onion for $2.50 and two oranges for $3.95 - are you serious? !! Yes Tokyo is the most expensive place to eat fresh fruit or vegetable - a green salad with tomatoes - equals about $9.00 and that got you one head of romaine lettuce and 2 small tomatoes.
We bought the bare essentials and David decided to get one of his favorites - fried Octopus balls !!!! now followed a quick dinner and than passing out on our first night in Tokyo me in the bed ( Thank you David ) and he on the futon extra in the living room with football and some good japanese beer.

Today we woke to a lot of rain and I personally to a polka dot umbrella David brought especially for me his albino friend! We decided to venture out to Roppongi to meet with one of the potential models and after a long walk past thousands of on the street drink and coffee vending machines we arrived at one of the "new" Tokyo landmarks Roppongi Central Mall where we broke down and although filled with shame had a Dean and Deluca steamed soy milk - so much for "yeah man we are going to do it all authentic old school japanese style " - but it was sooooo good......

We still had some time to kill and ventured off through a beautiful park and found in between skyscrapers and parking lots a tiny street with a beautiful little temple and very old cemetery with beautiful big trees and japanese grave sculptures. A very peaceful place.

Then Fujiko, shopgirl during the day and a major celebrity DJ by night met with us and took us to a little Rahmen noodle spot where we sealed the deal with hot and cold Rahmen and Buckwheat tea. The excitement of getting started and scheduling the first shoots was in the air and she may even have an original Kimono !

So one new Passu card later - it's the japanese oyster card - and our first subway ride which is an amazingly easy and fast system we were back ohm for a nap and some homemade sticky rice beer and of course ready for FOOTBALL! ( yes david found CNN amongst those 323558 channels !!! )

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