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VIOTAS joins the IJA as a Corporate member

Ireland Japan Association (IJA) is delighted to welcome VIOTAS, an Irish smart grid energy technology and services company, on board the IJA as a Corporate member and is looking forward to a long lasting and successful cooperation.

VIOTAS is an Irish smart grid energy technology and services company HQ’d in Limerick that is embarked on an international expansion program.

 

We develop both software and hardware to enable industrial and commercial facilities respond in real time to power system conditions, allowing grids absorb more renewable energy, such as wind and solar energy.

In the past year, we set up our first foreign operations in Melbourne, Australia. The team down there is now 5-strong, and we anticipate it to grow further over the coming months.

We are now turning our attention to other markets, including Japan. To that end, we are establishing connections and building our network and relationships with the Ireland/Japan business community, in the lead-up to our anticipated market entry within the next 2-3 years.

 

 

If you wish to learn more about VIOTAS and services they provide, please visit their website: https://viotas.com/ or visit VIOTAS profile on LinkedIn and Twitter!

Exhibition ‘Edo in Colour – Prints from Japan’s Metropolis’ | Online Now

As the Chester Beatty continues to follow Irish government guidelines, the opening of ‘Edo in Colour – Prints from Japan’s Metropolis’ has been delayed but an online version of the exhibition, which features one hundred prints and printed books from the Chester Beatty’s renowned collections of Japanese art, can be viewed here.

Photo: Chesterbeatty.ie

Bursting into life as capital of Japan’s ruling shogunate, by the mid-18th century the population of Edo (modern Tokyo) had grown to over one million.

From buskers and teahouse beauties to actors, entertainers, prostitutes and star-crossed lovers, the people of downtown Edo became celebrities of this new metropolis, their image captured in vibrant woodblock prints.

Photo: Chesterbeatty.ie

Woodblock prints were an affordable art, printed by the thousand and consumed as fast as fashion demanded. They are also aesthetically rich and technically accomplished. As illustrious artists and shrewd publishers battled for market share, they constructed the city anew on paper.

Edo in Colour explores how woodblock prints shaped a city’s identity as they crafted its image.

Photo: Chesterbeatty.ie

 

Visit online exhibition here: https://chesterbeatty.ie/exhibitions/edo-in-colour/

 


‘Edo in Colour’ is presented with the support of the Japan Foundation and Toshiba International Foundation.

‘Black Dragonfly’ – Debut Novel by Jean Pasley

We are delighted to announce the upcoming release of Jean Pasley’s novel ‘Black Dragonfly’ based on the remarkable experiences of the Irish writer Lafcadio Hearn.

Over a century after his death, nomadic Irish writer, Patrick Lafcadio Hearn remains one of the most famous Westerners ever to make Japan his home. In this richly imagined novel, Jean Pasley explores not only Hearn’s stark, lonely childhood in Ireland and his scandalous time in America but also how Japan changed him and how he went on to become one of Japan’s most celebrated and cherished writers.

Dublin-born writer and filmmaker Jean Pasley spent ten years in Japan. Her screenplays have won numerous awards, the most recent being The Audience Award at Cork International Film Festival 2020 for The Bright Side on which she was co-writer. Her new short film, Ship of Souls, which she directed, was also inspired by Hearn and is due for release shortly. She now lives in Dublin, close to one of Hearn’s childhood homes. This is her first novel. Jean Pasley is also a member of the Ireland Japan Association (IJA).

 

A lavish, beautiful testimony to the life and achievements of Lafcadio Hearn. – Frank McGuinness

 

The story of a complex and troubled man, as he tries to come to terms with his life and at the same time, negotiate the ancient, mysterious and fast-changing civilisation of nineteenth century Japan. – Christine Dwyer Hickey

 

An alluring and absorbing tale and one of the most engaging and insightful books I have read in a long time. – Manchán Magan

 

Black Dragonfly is published by Balestier Press. Publication date: 15 April 2021.

You can preorder your copy online here:


ABOUT BALESTIER PRESS
Founded in 2015, Balestier Press is an independent publisher proudly presenting the hidden gems of contemporary world literature, picture books, comics/graphic novels and memoirs, with a focus on Asia, Pacific and Africa. We enable a greater variety of original voices to be heard by promoting writers, translators, and illustrators worldwide, with the belief that the beauty of literature, stories and thoughts can connect different cultures and people across borders.

Japanese Story: A New Season of Japanese Films Online | Volume I

If you have an interest in Japanese film history, you will be pleased to know that Irish Film Institute has announced their new season of Japanese films, online on IFI@Home: Japanese Story.

Films included in the first volume of the season will be available to rent from Friday, February 5th for just €5.99, taking you through a journey of Japanese cinema, from the Golden Age to the surrealist, to the best of J-Horror.

Films are available to browse and rent here: https://www.ifihome.ie/page/japanese-story/

The phenomenal depth and breadth of stylistic and narrative invention observed in Japanese cinema offers continued delights for even the most ardent of cinephiles. The films selected for this season are intended to offer the most basic of primers to one of film’s most historically significant national cinemas.

Alongside classics from titans such as Ozu and Kurosawa are included some more outré examples of work from contemporary directors, as well as samples of uniquely Japanese takes on genre, such as the kaijuanime, and pinku eiga films featured. While it is impossible to represent all the many facets of Japanese cinema in such a selection, it is hoped that what is on offer will provide a tantalising introduction for some, and a welcome opportunity to revisit for others.

JAPANESE STORY VOLUME I: FULL SCHEDULE
Films are available to browse and rent here.
The second volume of the season will be available to rent on IFI@Home in March 2021.

A Gap in the Clouds: Translating Medieval Japanese Poetry

Trinity Centre for Literary and Cultural Translation  is inviting you to join for the launch of a new translation of the Ogura Hyakunin Isshu, one of the most important poetry collections in Japan.

Date: Thursday, 11 February 2021
Time: 5.30 PM
Registration is required: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/a-gap-in-the-clouds-translating-medieval-japanese-poetry-today-tickets-137401151543?aff=ebdssbeac&keep_tld=1

Compiled ca. 1235 by Fujiwara no Teika, it is one of the most important poetry collections in Japan, a collection of 100 poems by 100 poets, composed by emperors and empresses, courtiers, high priests, ladies-in-waiting and soldier-calligraphers over almost 400 years. The 100 poems in the collection are Tanka, a related form of poem to the more famous Haiku. Each one works as a mental snapshot of scene, filled with symbolism and layers of interpretation.

This new translation, A Gap in the Clouds, is a collaboration between James Hadley, Director of the MPhil in Literary Translation at Trinity College, and poet Nell Regan. The collection combines the scholarly research to understand the historical and cultural context of medieval Japan, where the poems were originally written; with the poetic mastery to allow each text to be appreciated as a poem in its own right in English. The book includes all 100 of the poems in English translation, accompanied by the original poems in beautiful Japanese calligraphy.

James and Nell will be joining this event to discuss the background to the collection, how they went about translating the poems, and will read some of their favourites from the collection.

Nell Regan is a poet and non-fiction writer based in Dublin. She has published three collections of poetry: Preparing for SpringBound for Home and One Still Thing. Her awards include an Arts Council Literature Bursary, a Fellowship at the International Writing Programme, Iowa; and she has been a Fulbright Scholar at U.C. Berkeley, as well as Patrick and Katherine Kavanagh Fellow. Her biography Helena Molony, A Radical Life, 1883-1967 was Irish Independent 2017 Book of the Year. Her translations of the Irish language poetry of Micheál Mac Liammóir have been published in Poetry Ireland Review and Cyphers. She works freelance as an educator and literary programmer. Her recent collaboration with composer & musician Mary Barnecutt, supported by the Arts Council, has just been launched at www.eavesdrop.ie

James Hadley is Ussher Assistant Professor in Literary Translation at Trinity College Dublin. He is the director of the College’s master’s degree in Literary Translation, which is based at the Trinity Centre for Literary and Cultural Translation. After studying Japanese and Computing at the undergraduate level, and later Buddhism and Translation Studies at the master’s level, James completed a PhD in Translation Studies in 2013. Since then, James has become known as one of the leading theoretical researchers in indirect translation, or the translation of translations. James is a strong proponent of using computer-based tools in the production of translation research. James is also very interested in practices that stretch our casual assumptions about what translation is and how it functions.

If you would like to pre-order this book, please click here: https://www.dedaluspress.com/product/a-gap-in-the-clouds/

 

The JLTI Japanese Language Contest is open for entries!

In order to encourage and promote Japanese language education in Ireland, JLTI and the Embassy of Japan in Ireland jointly have hosted an annual Japanese speech contest. This year, the Japanese Speech Contest is back as the Japanese Language Contest.

The theme is ‘optimism’ and JLTI is inviting entries in the form of speech or Japanese language soundtrack videos which demonstrate an optimistic outlook.

The Japanese Language Contest takes place online.

The entries will be evaluated on a variety of criteria such as language level and expression, creativity and performance, and the prizes will reward a range of different styles, abilities and effort. The judging panel will take into account the language background and learning experience of the entrants which will be documented through their application forms.

Enquiry: Twitter account @JLTIcontest OR jltispeechcontest2021@gmail.com

Guidelines for Video Production and Uploading Video to YouTube

  • Video production must be original work. In the open category, if you use music and/or pictures, they also must be original or copy-right free materials.
  • The entry should be your own work (or the work of the members of your group). Only limited help or input from a teacher or native speaker or other is permitted.
  • Participants should submit a YouTube video link. See the following instructions on how to upload your video on YouTube: https://youtu.be/VtF2AgFSLAw
  • The setting of your video privacy should be “unlisted”
  • Please title the video with your name (or your group name for a group entry)

Secondary School Category

  • Video clip of a self-introduction speech
  • One individual speaker should be clearly shown making their speech on screen.
  • No use of special props or items, other speaker or background noise or music etc is permitted.
  • Duration is 1 – 5 minutes

Open Category

  • It can be individual or group production
  • Open format; (i.e.) speech, conversation, skit, drama, song, poetry, show & tell, presentation or animation
  • There must be a soundtrack in Japanese voiced by the entrant(s)
  • If entrants are not shown speaking on screen, then a separate short video must be provided with the application form which clearly shows the entrant(s) giving their names and speaking the lines. This video will not be evaluated for judging purposes.
  • Duration is 2 – 7 minutes

Criteria for Participation:

  • Participants must not be Japanese native speakers
  • Participants must be residents of Ireland.
  • Secondary School Category: This category is open to individual entrants of Secondary School age only.
  • Open Category: Participants cannot have lived in Japan for longer than 5 years in total. This category is open to entrants of all ages.
  • Neither participants themselves nor their immediate family members may be members of the JLTI.
  • Only one entry per category per person, regardless of whether individual or part of a group.
  • Participants should submit the application form including their YouTube video link and consent form(s) by the deadline.
  • A signed consent form must be provided for each member of any team entries for the Open Category.
  • For individual entries, the file names for the YouTube Videos and Consent Form should include the name of the entrant. The group name should be included in the file names for group entry videos and group member consent forms.
  • Applications will be accepted until February 28th.

Online Application and Consent Forms can be found here: https://jlti.org/speech/

Application Deadline: Sunday, 28th February 2021

Results will be announced by the end of March. The winners will be added to our website and winning entries will be showcased on social media.

Hosted by Japanese Language Teachers of Ireland (JLTI) and The Embassy of Japan. Supported by the Japan Foundation.

Dr. and Mrs. Ushioda Scholarship | Post-scholarship report by Sophia Herar

We are delighted to let you know that Sophia Herar, Dr. and Mrs. Ushioda Scholarship recipient in 2019, has returned from Japan where she studied at Kyoto University of Foreign Studies.
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Studying abroad is a unique, unforgettable experience and we are happy that Sophia had this wonderful opportunity not only to study in Japan but also to explore the country, experience Japan’s authentic culture and make new friendships. Due to the global Covid-19 pandemic, Sophia’s stay in Japan was cut short but she would like to express her gratitude for the support and wonderful year abroad to Mrs. Ushioda and the IJA.
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‘I prepared for so many eventualities, and yet the most memorable moments were the ones I could have never anticipated. Traveling abroad for a year undoubtedly poses more challenges than anyone can prepare for, but they make the joyous moments all the more worth living.’ – Sophia Herar 

Sophia Herar and Mrs. Yoshiko Ushioda, IJA founder member and Scholarship Patron at the official presentation of the scholarship (August 2019).

If you would like to read about Sophia’s experience in Japan, her full post-scholarship essay is available on the IJA website here!
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Sophia and her friends on a hiking trip from Kibuneguchi to Kurama

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First time wearing a traditional Kimono

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Dr. and Mrs. Ushioda Scholarship was established in 2019 in honour of Dr. and Mrs. Ushioda’s major contribution to the development of the Ireland Japan Association and Ireland-Japan relations, and to underpin the association’s strong commitment to supporting Japanese studies in Ireland.
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In Memoriam: Dr Tom Hardiman (1929-2020)

The Ireland Japan Association is sad to hear of the passing of Dr Tom Hardiman.

Dr. Hardiman was an honorary member of the IJA and contributed regularly at IJA Council meetings as a knowledgeable and passionate advocate of EU-Japan relations. He was kind and insightful on matters of business, culture and education. He spoke with beautiful, measured language and always had a twinkle in his eye.

He left a deep impression on everybody he met. We were blessed in the Ireland Japan Association to share the time with such a great man.

Our thoughts are with his wife, Rosaleen, his family and many friends at this time.

Raymond Hegarty, IJA Chairperson

On behalf of the Council of the Ireland Japan Association


Photo: www.ria.ie

IJA Annual Dinner 2020

30th IJA Annual Dinner | Photo Gallery

On 14th February the IJA members, friends, and supporters came together to celebrate and enjoy one of our biggest events of the year – 30th IJA Annual Dinner 2020. This year it took place at one of the most beautiful and iconic Dublin venues – The Shelbourne Hotel.

The evening began with Sake reception, kindly supported by Embassy of Japan in Ireland and our corporate member – Retro Sake. Reception was followed by speeches from Ms Darina Slattery, IJA Chairperson, Mr Peter Sherrard, CEO of Olympic Federation of Ireland and H.E. Mr Mitsuru Kitano, Ambassador of Japan in Ireland.

Darina Slattery, IJA Chairperson

Peter Sherrard, CEO of Olympic Federation of Ireland

H.E. Mr Mitsuru Kitano, Ambassador of Japan in Ireland

IJA Annual Dinner 2020

Read here: Ambassador Kitano’s full speech at the IJA Annual Dinner 2020.

The guests enjoyed a delicious 3-course dinner in the beautiful Great Room followed by Prize Giving sponsored by the IJA Corporate members – AIB, ANABank of IrelandDillon EustaceKWE Ireland, Mitsubishi Electric, Retro Sake, SuMi TRUSTUnique Japan Tours and Yamamori. The Grand Prize this year was 2 return flights to Japan sponsored by Finnair, IJA 2020 Travel Partner.

 

(Please click on the images to enlarge)

Photo gallery in video format can be viewed here!

 

 

We would like to thank everyone who attended the IJA Annual Dinner this year. Special thanks go to our Patron member – AIB, our Travel Partner – Finnair, and all our Corporate members for their continued support and very generous prizes.

Our thanks go to the Dublin School for Japanese Children who made all the beautiful origami decorations for the dinner tables and to Mrs Tomoko Ozaki who created a wonderful Ikebana flower arrangement for the event. We would also like to thank The Shelbourne Hotel for hosting our event and providing excellent service before and during the dinner.

We would like to thank our Master of Ceremonies – Mr Raymond Hegarty, and our event team and volunteers – Mr Donagh Morris, Mr Graham Ryan, Ms Paula Kelly, Ms Tsugumi Yamamoto and Mr Yasuyuki Ozeki  – for their time, support and help to make this year’s event such a great success.

Photos/Video: Donagh Morris

MUFG Investor Services joins IJA as a corporate member

Ireland Japan Association (IJA) is delighted to welcome asset servicing, banking and fund financing leaders MUFG Investor Services on board IJA as a Corporate member and is looking forward to a long lasting and successful cooperation.

MUFG Investor Services is an industry leader in asset servicing, banking and fund financing, working with some of the largest investment firms in the world.

We are a core business for Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (“MUFG”), one of the largest global banks with more than US$2.7 trillion in assets.  Our global scale, breadth of services, and industry leading technology, allow us to build partnerships with our clients and create distinctive solutions that meet their specific priorities.

In recent years we have strategically acquired firms in the asset servicing industry and successfully grown our business in terms of client and employee retention.

The firm continues to be fully committed to this business; a consistent, top tier provider with a global presence – administering US$582 billion in assets globally.

If you would like to find out more about MUFG Investor Services please visit their website: https://www.mufg-investorservices.com

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