The Japanese American Cultural and Community Center is presenting an October lineup that is filled with captivating performing arts, stunning exhibitions, and illuminating workshops. In the spirit of bringing together people, cultures and communities, the JACCC is actively reaching out to develop cultural programs through partnerships and collaborations with various cultural organizations in Los Angeles.
First up is a photographic exhibition, “Utsuyaka” (literally “beautiful and graceful” in the Kyoto dialect), by versatile, in-demand photographer Taka Kobayashi, internationally celebrated for his work in iconic ad designs, artistic stills, and fashion photography. This U.S. premiere of Kobayashi’s latest work explores the fragile beauty of maiko from Kyoto by by juxtaposing them with classic fashion poses and stark silhouettes. The exhibition will be open Oct. 7 to 23 in the George J. Doizaki Gallery/South Gallery. Free admission.
On Saturday, Oct. 8, the JACCC and the Torrance Cultural Arts Foundation will present a powerful performance by the contemporary taiko quartet On Ensemble at the Armstrong Theatre in Torrance. Composed of artists individually recognized as top-tier performers, On Ensemble is known for its eclectic fusion of traditional and contemporary taiko drumming, blending hip-hop, rock, and electronica to create a signature sound and performance that is entirely unique. Tickets are on sale now for $30.
Finish up the weekend on Sunday, Oct. 9, with an afternoon of refreshing tea and live chamber music. “On the Veranda: Tea & Chamber Music” presents The Colburn Academy, the newest division of The Colburn School, featuring exceptional and talented young musicians. The program will be accompanied by light refreshments and tea-tasting, courtesy of Lupicia Fresh Tea. The “On the Veranda” program initiative at the JACCC Garden Room is a series of lectures and demonstrations that explore cultural arts in intimate surroundings. As space is limited, reservations are highly recommended.
On Saturday, Oct. 15, the North Gallery of the George J. Doizaki Gallery will exhibit the art of Japanese calligraphy by the Bunka Shodo Rengo-kai in Los Angeles. Founded in 1972 by Takusen Inoue, the organization commemorates 40 years of spreading the traditional art of Japanese calligraphy throughout Southern California. Open until Oct. 23, the exhibition features some of Bunka Shodo Rengo-kai’s finest work. Free admission.
Together with the World Festival of Sacred Music, the JACCC present “Mare Vaporum” (Sea of Vapour), the official closing-night event of the festival, on Sunday, Oct. 16. Held outdoors in the JACCC Plaza, the show was conceived and directed by Hirokazu Kosaka, JACCC artistic director, internationally known artist, and Zen archer. The night also features choreographer and butoh dancer Oguri, harmonica player Tetsuya Nakamura, singer Rafael Lopez-Barrantes, flamenco guitarist Ethan Margolis, The Colburn School’s Trudl Zipper Dance Institute, Vox Dance Theatre, and live and recorded music by Yuval Ron.
Rounding out the month on Sunday, Oct. 23, the JACCC partners with The Big Draw LA for an “On the Veranda” program that brings audience members together to celebrate the act of drawing. “On the Veranda: Shodo (The Way of Brush)” will start with a workshop on the origins of Japanese calligraphy, led by Bunka Shodo Beikoku Rengo-kai’s Takusen Inoue. Then all attendees will be invited to draw the word “tree” in Japanese to create a calligraphic forest of words, which will be exhibited at the JACCC. Admission is $20. As space is limited, reservations are highly recommended.
The JACCC is located at 244 S. San Pedro St. in Little Tokyo. For more information, call (213) 628-2725 or visit www.jaccc.org.