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Synopsis of Haitian Art

Written by  |  Published in Haitian Culture & Politics

Synopsis of Art by Artists of Haitian Descent in the Diaspora –– Part II

By Marcel Duret and Fred Thomas


One of Haiti’s greatest exports to the world is its beautiful art. To illustrate the four major trends of the Haitian diaspora as outlined in the 2013 Summer Issue of the Tokyo Journal, Haitian art experts Marcel Duret and Fred Thomas cast a closer look on the works of a few selected artists.

THE NAIVE VEIN
When looking at a naive painting a most striking element is the raw quality and directness of the composition and design. Everything is kept simple. What you see is what it is about. Lines and colors are combined to convey a clear image where each element appears necessary for the edification and justification of the whole. As few ornaments as possible are used, making the bluntness of expression look even more evident. The lack of artifice and hid- den meanings maximizes the connection between the picture and observers, many of who lose no time trying to decipher some cryptic iconography or unclear symbols that require initiation rites or specific knowledge. This simplicity can baffle onlookers who try so hard to complicate things based on their own bias or collective pool of references, instead of opening up their minds and let- ting themselves become impregnated by the unique visual and emotional experience that a primitive painting can achieve when it is made by someone genuinely awestricken by an inner vision or a natural phenomenon.

This simplicity sometimes appears in the flatness of shapes. It is as if the artists use some type of magnifying glass that enables them to bring forth every element of a scene as though each one is of equal importance. This way nothing is left behind for the benefit of the observer who can see the relevance of every item as it is conceived in the artist’s mind.The idea is not to judge but rather to take everything indiscriminately at face value.

YOGA ADVOCATE JUDIT TOROK

Written by  |  Published in Yoga Lifestyle

A regular visitor to Tokyo, New York City-based Yoga Instructor and Interculturalist Judit Torok shares her techniques for alleviating big city stress.

Yoga for Everyone

I recently read an article about parents of elementary school children in California who were outraged about their children practicing Ashtangastyle yoga at school as part of their physical education program. They claimed that yoga is inappropriate and dangerous for kids because they believe their children are being indoctrinated into the Hindu religion in a public school. I couldn’t disagree with them more. These parents, and unfortunately many other people, hold inaccurate notions of this ancient practice.

YOGA ADVOCATE JUDIT TOROK

Written by  |  Published in Yoga Lifestyle

A regular visitor to Tokyo, New York City- based Yoga Instructor and Interculturalist Judit Torok shares her techniques for alleviating big city stress.

Yoga on the Go

Traveling can take a lot out of us, physically and mentally. Running from trains to taxis, carrying and lifting heavy bags, standing and waiting in long lines and being jammed into tight and uncomfortable spaces – these are common for travelers. And through all of this we often forget to take care of ourselves and instead accumulate anxiety and strain on our bodies that can have serious long-term consequences for our well-being.

Yoga & Wellness Advocate

Written by  |  Published in Yoga Lifestyle

JUDIT TOROK

A regular visitor to Tokyo, New York City-based Yoga Instructor and Interculturalist Judit Torok shares her techniques for alleviating big city stress.

Bad Excuses

Obviously, these are bad and almost humorous excuses for not joining a beginner’s Spanish class. After all, not speaking a language is precisely the right reason to start learning a foreign language. Taking an introductory class is a safe and fun way to begin a journey toward understanding other cultures as well as learning about ourselves. A determined language learner also develops qualities such as persistence, willingness to make mistakes and overcoming self-consciousness.

Yoga Crosses Cultures

Written by  |  Published in Yoga Lifestyle

ON any given day I interact with people from around the world. I attend meetings with colleagues from France, the Philippines and Bangladesh. I write emails to Japan and make Skype calls to friends in Chile. My neighbors are Greek and my boss is from Egypt. In this diverse but connected world I face the challenges of intercultural communications every day.

A powerful technique in cross-cultural interactions is empathy. Cultivating an empathetic feeling as we interact with friends, colleagues and strangers whose thinking and values differ from our own, helps to widen our perspective on the world. But trying to understand other people’s thoughts and feelings can also have a destabilizing effect on us. Through cross-cultural communication, it’s possible to become vulnerable and get lost in a medley of conflicting values, customs and rules. Empathy needs a force to balance it out.

QUALITY TIME

Written by  |  Published in Parenting

What is the most beneficial way to reward your children?

Buy them a new toy? Allow them to stay up later? Let them watch a special TV show?

These may or may not have positive effects, but none of them can compare with the undivided attention of a parent.

Older children may deny that they require attention from their parents; however, it is possible to see the impact extra attention can have. With younger children, the results are often visible straight away. They respond with smiles and can be encouraged to try new things. Eventually you may notice an increase in your child’s self-esteem as they grow older.

充実の時

子供にとって一番

励みになるのは何だと思います

新しいおもちゃを買ってあげる?遅くまで起きていること を認める?特別なテレビ番組を見させてあげる?

こうしたインセンティブが効果的かどうかはさておき、い ずれも親が子供にしっかり目を向けることとは比べようも ありません。

子 供は大きくなると、親が自分に注目することを拒むかも しれません。しかし、親の注目は必ず効果をもたらします。 子供が小さければ、その結果はストレートに現れます。子 供は笑顔を見せ、新しいことに挑戦しようとするでしょう。 子供が大きくなれば、子供の自尊心の高まりが感じられる かもしれません。

Photographer Hiroyuki Suzuki

Written by  |  Published in Tokyo Photography

Photographer Hiroyuki Suzuki

Scenes Beyond our Imagination

A photograph enables us to permanently own the scenery or subject we see in the viewfinder by capturing what is right in front of us with a camera. Sometimes, it creates an unusual space beyond our imagination.

Of course, it is nothing more than coincidence when one encounters an exciting subject and a satisfactory shot is only possible when all the conditions are perfect. A photo shoot might be a journey to find a lucky coincidence.

Photographer Hiroyuki Suzuki

Written by  |  Published in Tokyo Photography

Photographer Hiroyuki Suzuki

“Tool” for “Needs”

Buddhism

Written by  |  Published in Strategist & Nuclear Expert

Buddhism

Interview with Philosopher Dr. Hiroshi Tasaka

TJ: How do you define Buddhism?

TASAKA: Buddhism is a kind of “cosmology” that can accept various value systems - not only religions but philosophies that exist around the world. Zen Buddhism, especially, is a “philosophy of contradiction” that can accept all the contradictions in our life, because contradiction is an essence of life. An important thing in Buddhism is the ability to keep the contradictions in mind, to keep gazing at them and think about the meaning of the contradictions.

Passionate Journey

Written by  |  Published in Lifestyles

I HAVE a vivid memory of how excited I was the first time I was going to fly. I can’t remember my exact age or even where we were going. But that feeling of joy, amazement and thrill remains so very vivid. My body seemed to have a life of its own back then. I could hardly stand still. For days I told people of my pending flight high up in the sky. I would even point up to make sure they got the point, so that they could see the shiny little plane way up there. I planned to make one of those cool white stripes behind the plane. I just didn’t know how. I didn’t ever get round to asking my dad, mom or the pilot about that. Nor about how they shrink the plane so that it gets so small in the sky.

Then the travel day came and it seemed so loud and busy. There was no time for my endless stream of questions and bursts of joy. At the airport, tons of people rushed back and forth with big bags and suitcases. They looked like ants running with their stuff back and forth. They seemed so focused, not at all approachable. And then there were the lines, the papers to check and those small books called passports. A lady put our luggage on a black belt so it would go on a journey of its own, or so I thought. Mom said we would get it back later.



Page 7 of 7

Staff Continued

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