New Fez Trailer

I know it’s not really Japan-related, but my good friend Jason (aka 6955) was still in Tokyo when he started work on Fez — he moved last year to Montreal to join the rest of the Polytron crew — and so that’s how I justify posting the brilliant new trailer for the game. It will be glorious.

Update (16/12/11): The video is no longer available.

101QUESTIONS at 101TOKYO

The 101TOKYO contemporary art fair is just around the corner (April 2-5), and they’ve just announced that a new project called the “101QUESTIONS Educational Program” will be part of the show. The program is comprised of six panel discussions that will be held over the four days of the event, with the idea of addressing issues from the world of contemporary art. The lineup of speakers is extensive and should make for some interesting sessions — the schedule doesn’t appear to be online yet, but I’m sure it will be up very soon.

Update: The details are now online.

Tramnesia: Depot

Tramnesia’s terrific “Working” series of short video reports on independent businesses continues with yet another Tokyo-related company — previously Knee High Media and Postalco — this time the Depot Cycle & Recycle bike shop in Ichikawa.

Depot Cycle & Recycle is a bicycle shop in Ichikawa, an eastern suburb of Tokyo a little more than an hour’s bike ride from Shibuya. Established by Seiya Minato in 2001, Depot first began by offering bike parts and accessories to Tokyo’s far-flung messenger community. Seiya made his mark too by importing many foreign brands into Japan, introducing companies like ReLoad and Freitag to Tokyo’s cyclists while encouraging local producers to develop their own products. Seiya presaged Japan’s street trend of fixed-gear track bikes and for years was the only Tokyo-area bike shop selling used keirin frames, working with local frame builders to resell retired bikes. Now that the trend has exploded into a media-recognized phenomenon, spiking prices to unaffordable levels, Seiya has concentrated more on encouraging bike culture, the “things around the bike,” as he puts it. “I’m not so interested in the bike… I like riding bikes.”

Uniqlo Love

Year after year, I tend to have a love-hate relationship with Uniqlo. I won’t get into it, but right now I’m in a love period, having picked up quite a few things in the past week or so.

First up is the latest “Designers Invitation Project” collaboration, this time with Opening Ceremony. I’m certainly glad I picked up everything I wanted — and it was a lot — last week when it was released, since it already seems to be mostly sold out (the best pieces and sizes) in most stores (at least the ones I’ve checked).

Next up, the latest collections of UT t-shirts, which includes the first phase of the game-related designs, as well as the “Creative Magazine Now!” collection, featuring designs by the following six magazines: Spectator (Tokyo), Tokion (New York), Grafik (London), Fairy Tale (Paris), Lodown (Berlin), and IdN (Hong Kong). I picked up a Tokion tee, an IdN one, and Grafik. For the game tees, I wanted Arkenoid and Galaxian, but they were already sold out of mediums when I was there the other day.