Discover Kokoro

Dear reader, Welcome to our new website, Kokoro Media, that has just opened on July 15! Kokoro is a Japanese word that is often translated in English as “heart” or “spirit.” However, for the Japanese, the concept of kokoro encompasses what a person thinks, feels, and would like to express. A person’s kokoro cannot be seen or touched, but we can have a glimpse of it by looking at what a person does or makes and by using our imagination. (You can read more about this concept here: What is “Kokoro?”) At Kokoro Media, we are an editorial team made of long-term foreign residents in Japan and Japanese nationals….

Embracing a New Life through Calligraphy: an Interview with the Calligrapher Kaku

My First Encounter with Kaku The first time I met Kaku-san was during the fall of 2018. I was working on a project regarding tourism in the town of Takahama, in Fukui prefecture. I was told I was going to participate in a calligraphy workshop. My guide told me, “The calligrapher is very talented–he’s even been invited to exhibit in other countries. He’s an artist, but he also rents a room in his house for tourists, and he does calligraphy workshops too.” When I heard that, for some reason, I was imagining a sixty-ish austere man living in a traditional house. Then I met Kaku, in his thirties,…