This Week in Magazines


  • I’ve never included INVITATION in these posts, but the latest issue (59) caught my attention with its “TOKYO (written in kanji) VS Tokyo” cover. In the feature, they first offer a look at the city through the eyes of foreigners — for the most part creators and celebrities — and then switch things around by seeing how it compares to the Tokyo of the Japanese. Either way, it makes for some great highlights of things you’d probably want to take in when coming for a visit.
  • STUDIO VOICE (386) devotes an issue to SHONEN JUMP, the top-selling weekly comics magazines that has spawned countless famous manga series. It’s a look at the past and present of the magazine, with spotlights on both series and creators.
  • PEN (214) goes to London, which means you get a pretty good guide to what is worth checking out in the city, with a strong focus on design and architecture.
  • If you only pick up one issue of REAL DESIGN this year, it should definitely be the latest one (21). It offers a terrific look at the current Japanese design scene, with the “2008 DESIGN” feature providing a handy guide to the creators you need to be keeping an eye on.
  • Although I haven’t mentioned any yet, over the past few months I’ve been looking through quite a few cycling magazines. My favorite, and the one I buy, is called BICYCLE NAVI, and the latest issue (29) features a cover illustration by Shu-Thang Grafix and suggestions on how to start your cycling life for under 100 000 yen. Another magazine I was leafing through recently is called JITENSHA JIN, the “magazine for bicycle people.” It’s a quarterly, and the latest issue (Winter 2008) has an interesting look at a few independent Japanese bicycle and parts makers (“Made in Japan 4”). Even better, that article gets translated in English (but nothing else in the magazine).