With the internet and international traveling becoming more accessible, artists and designers nowadays have the freedom to work flexible in different cities. This site is made in the hopes of helping creatives from foreign countries, and to energize the Japanese art scene by having more international interactions.
This site is useful if you are a:
- Tourist passing by Tokyo that likes art
- An artist or designer tagging along a partner who is relocating to Tokyo
- An artist or designer who worked / studied overseas and don’t know where to start after returning
- Anyone creative in Tokyo for whatever reason
Why I made this site:
Moving around different cities and countries my whole entire life has always been a challenge. Settling in can sometimes take a good while and finding your place / friends is not an easy task. As a self-employed artist with no co-workers, company gatherings, or resources to be introduced, I’ve always been open and proactive as possible in seeking out necessities for myself.
After working overseas as an artist for many years and coming back to Japan, I was surprised how hard it was to find available resources in continuing my art career in Tokyo. After all, this was Tokyo, a major city with lots of creatives. Not some small city that had no art scene.
Google only gave me vague tips… it turns out there is no specific gathering areas for artists in Tokyo and Japanese artists usually already have their private communities continuing from art school that they exchange information with exclusively. I was not satisfied with the results. “I need to find more information, there has to be more if I search.” I thought there could be an artist resource website like the NYFA website for artists in New York, but most were outdated or only had small sections of resources. Why is there no website dedicated to sharing resources for artists in a big city like Tokyo?
I also realized many of the resources were only available in Japanese. “Artists from overseas must have a difficult time finding things in Tokyo if they’re not already connected.” As much as there are discussions on how small the art market is in Japan, I thought expanding the international accessibility can only add a positive growth in the art scene in Tokyo.
As I searched and started to compile a list for myself, I decided to share them on the internet for English speakers and Japanese returnees like me .
Miki Saito, born in Japan, is a bilingual Japanese artist.
She has been constantly living between the U.S. and Japan throughout her life. She has lived in over five states in the U.S., three cities in Japan, and has traveled to more than 25 countries. She also works as an interpreter / translator in Japanese & English since a teenager.
Miki studied design at KIDI Parsons in Kanazawa (Associated with Parsons New York), and then transferred to Art Center College of Design in California where she earned a BFA in Fine Arts.