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Featured open house talk at U. of I.'s Japan House will focus on Edo culture

Melissa Mitchell, Arts Editor

Released 10/10/2007

 A presentation on Edo culture by a visiting speaker will be among the highlights at the annual fall open house at the Japan House at the University of Illinois from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Oct. 20.

Located at 2000 S. Lincoln Ave., Urbana, Japan House is an educational and cultural facility focusing on Japanese arts. It is affiliated with the university’s College of Fine and Applied Arts.

“Japan Cool: Edo Culture Revealed,” is the title of the featured talk, which will be presented at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. by Takuji Okuno, a professor of sociology at Kwansei Gakuin University, Osaka, Japan. Okuno’s presentation will explore the way in which many forms of contemporary Japanese popular culture, such as anime, are actually rooted in the traditional Edo culture of Japan, which dates from about 1600 through the 1850s.

Other activities planned include tours of Japan House’s gardens with its designer and builder, James Bier, at 1 and 3 p.m.

Throughout the day, members of the Urbana-Champaign Association of Chado Urasenke Tankokai will present tea ceremonies.

More information about the open house, and other upcoming Japan House events – including “Simple Elegance,” a Nov. 10 trunk show and sale featuring jewelry, wearable artwork and textiles – is available online, or by calling 244-9934.