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19 Things To Do in Tokyo This Week: January 16–22

Tokyo Weekender's guide to the best events, activities and things to do in the city

This week in Tokyo, there’s a special art exhibition by Keiichi Tanaami dedicated to Fujio Akatsuka, plus a Haus of Gaishoku drag show and Hisashi Eguchi’s solo exhibition. Winter events and illuminations continue. And for those who might be interested in ice skating, Ginza has its very own rooftop rink.

Art Exhibitions

Solo Exhibition by Keiichi Tanaami

One of the leading pop artists of postwar Japan, Keiichi Tanaami opens this special exhibition of his work in memory of lifelong friend and manga artist Fujio Akatsuka, who would have turned 80 this year.

The exhibition named “Tanaami!! Akatsuka!! / That’s All Right!!” combines various formats such as paintings, neon works, collages and art installations.

In addition to the exhibition, a special edition collection of works will be published.

Until Feb 13 | Event details

studio ghibli animage exhibition tokyo

Animage and Studio Ghibli Exhibition

Animage is the magazine that discovered many talented creators during the anime boom of the 1980s. This exhibition focuses on the role Animage played in the development of anime works, in particular its connection with the creation of Studio Ghibli and its directors Isao Takahata and Hayao Miyazaki.

Until Jan 23 | Event Details


“La Mer Mother Sea” Photo Exhibition

Despite the ongoing pandemic, these artists are seeking to lead as normal a daily life as possible. Bunshun Gallery is pleased to announce the first photo exhibition of 2023, “La Mer Mother Sea.”

Curated by Naoko Ohta, this event exhibits 23 works by Ikuo Nakamura, Kentaro Kumon and Guenter Zorn.

From Jan 16 | Event details

poison exhibition

Special Exhibition: Poison

In this special exhibition, the National Museum of Nature and Science introduces a new perspective on poison, namely how it is paradoxically connected to life and survival, since it has beneficial effects too. The exhibit illustrates this fine line between toxin and cure and shows poison in its various beautiful forms and shapes in natural phenomena like fungi, plants and minerals, as well as in artificial toxins that remind the viewer of the effect of human interaction and interactively invites them to analyze their own relationship with toxoids.

Until Feb 19 | Event Details

hisashi eguchi

©Hisashi Eguchi, Courtesy of Kaikai Kiki Gallery

Hisashi Eguchi Solo Exhibition

Manga artist Hisashi Eguchi is known for his beautifully drawn illustrations of women, which have inspired many people in the Japanese art and illustration world. This long-awaited exhibition will be his first solo exhibition and it features 15 of his newest works, incorporating modern art methods. Based on original drawings, the paintings are made at Kaikai Kiki Gallery.

From Jan 17 | Event Details

Shun Sudo Solo Exhibition: “Art Land”

Shun Sudo is actively working in various fields, splitting his time between Tokyo and New York.

Sudo’s paintings and murals are a reflection of our times. In his solo exhibition, “Art Land,” Sudo presents 20 new works from his iconic series “button flowers” and a selection of limited items goods.

Until Jan 24 | Event details


The Eyes of the Prayer: Photographs and Works of Shinya Fujiwara

After traveling across Asia, Shinya Fujiwara made waves in the art world with his photographic masterpieces displaying vivid landscapes and people. This exhibition introduces Fujiwara’s pictorial travelogues, which depict his unique social views. It’s also the first time for a major event to showcase approximately 200 of Fujiwara’s most notable works.

Until Jan 31 | Event Details

Sadamasa Motonaga: “Triangle, Circle, Square”

Fergus McCaffrey Tokyo presents the solo exhibition of Sadamasa Motonaga: “Triangle, Circle, Square” to celebrate the centennial anniversary of the birth of the artist. There have been many projects and exhibitions organized nationwide throughout the year. This exhibition features 15 paintings produced between 1990 and 1999 presented at the gallery’s Tokyo space.

Until Feb 18 | Event Details

yayoi kusama tokyo exhibition 2022 2023

Every Day I Pray for Love: Yayoi Kusama’s New Art Exhibition

In this new exhibition, avant-garde artist Yayoi Kusama invites you into her current creative state and her hallucinatory visions through exclusive paintings, drawings and mesmerizing installations. In one room, a floor to ceiling installation of acrylic paintings beautifully captures the culmination of her experiential oeuvre, while the next envelops you in her creative mind.

Until Feb 26 | Event Details

haruki murakami library


The World Opened By Translation: Exhibition at Waseda University’s Haruki Murakami Library

This exhibition organized by The Waseda International House of Literature (also known as the Haruki Murakami Library) examines translation and how it helped Japanese literature spread abroad, especially the English-speaking world. The full title of the exhibition is “The World Opened by Translation: Contemporary Japanese Literature Repackaged for the Anglosphere and Beyond.”

Until March 26 | Event Details

Live Events

Haus of Gaishoku

Haus of Gaishoku Beauty Blenda Performance

Haus of Gaishoku’s monthly Beauty Blenda event is a cabaret of talented performers from around the world. The show features everything from contortionists and pole dancers to voguers and electro dancers, along with drag queens and kings. From the humor of the drag queen MCs to the beauty of the diverse performances, it’s a show not to be missed.

Doors open at 4pm, the show starts at 5pm.

Jan 22 | Event details

Earth winter festival tokyo

Earth Garden Winter Festival

Peruse the outdoor market stalls, nibble on some organic food and enjoy various workshops such as traditional lion dances and mochi pounding events, all tied together with live music performances at Earth Garden Winter Festival in Yoyogi Park this weekend. This festival has a special focus on ecological, organic and sustainable living, making it the perfect place to invite more awareness into your life.

Jan 21–22 | Event Details

louis vuitton yayoi kusama pop up store

Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama Pop-Up Store

French fashion house Louis Vuitton and Japanese contemporary artist Yayoi Kusama’s collaboration is brought to life at this new pop-up store in Harajuku. Alongside a massive lifelike sculpture of the artist herself, the store is brimming with Kusama’s signature polka dot pattern, resembling the immersive art installations she’s known for.

Until Jan 22 | Event Details

Ginza Six Rooftop Skating Rink

Part of the Ginza Six rooftop garden, which boasts the largest rooftop area in Ginza, has been turned into a skating rink this winter. Rinks that use resin instead of ice are eco-friendly because they do not use electricity, so guests’ clothes do not get wet. Christmas decorations are hung on the trees around the rink and guests can enjoy glittering illuminations at night.

Until Jan 31 | Event Details

Winter Illuminations

blue garden illumination festival tokyo

Blue Garden Illumination Winter Festival

Gaze at a wintery scene illuminated in various shades of blue at Happo-en, a 400-year-old Japanese garden.

You can also enjoy the blue lights with a glass of sake or a lovely meal from one of the various cafés and bars in the park. Be aware that most of them only open on weekends.

Until Feb 12 | Event details

Tobu Zoo Winter Illumination 2022

Tobu Zoo hopes to bring smiles with its 2022 winter illumination event. At night, rides and other attractions such as the Ferris wheel and roller coaster light up. A light show using music and CG animation is one of the many popular events, but also be sure to take a stroll around to spot the LED animals.

Until Feb 12 | Event Details

Marunouchi Illumination 2022

As with every year, around 340 trees on both sides of Nakadori in Marunouchi are brightly lit by about 1.2 million “Champagne Gold” lights. The light trail stretches along Tokyo Torch Park and Otemachi Nakadori. Around Tokyo Torch Terrace, many restaurants and cafés have made terrace seats available, perfect for relaxing and enjoying the illuminations.

Until Feb 19 | Event Details

Sagamiko Illumillion 2022

This winter, in addition to its regular display which uses 6 million LED lights, Sagamiko Illumillion features a Sumikko Gurashi –themed area for fans of the franchise.

Until Apr 2 | Event Details

Yomiuri Land Jewel Illumination

This year’s Yomiuri Land’s Jewel Illumination was developed by Motoko Ishii Lighting Design. This illumination is the world’s first using LEDs inspired by the color of jewels. All facilities and attractions, as well as performers’ costumes, take on a sparkly veneer during the illumination season.

Until Apr 9 | Event Details

For more Tokyo happenings, check out our event calendar