2019年12月15日

The crime of Kyoto that welcomes tourists in "Yukata even in winter"

In Kyoto, tourists walking in yukata are noticeable even in winter. Why did this happen? “A kindergarten that makes cheap things for tourists ca n’t be stopped once it ’s done,” says an oriental cultural researcher, Alex Kerr, who lives in Kyoto, and journalist Yumi Kiyono.
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* This article is a re-edit of a part of Alex Carr, Yumi Seino's "The Lost Sightseeing of Tourism" (Chukou Shinsho Racre).

◆ "Zombie" and "Frankenstein" culture
There are two options to take to protect traditional culture.

One is to choose a way to preserve the old styles and conventions. For example, Noh uses this method to bring the art style of hundreds of years ago to the present.
However, in the case of Noh, it was successful, but the way it was passed down to the past can sometimes fossilize the culture and make it meaningless to those who live today. It can be said to be a “zombie” culture that seems to be alive but not really alive.

The other is to flexibly change the shape and shape according to the times while firmly holding the core. This is a form of healthy inheritance of the culture, but without understanding the core, there is a risk of moving toward the creation of a monster different from the essence.

For this reason, it seems that this is "Frankenstein" compared to the previous "Zombie".

In tourism development in China, it is common to destroy old streets and build a “new and old town” like a movie set there. At first glance, it has a historical atmosphere, but the materials, shapes, and methods of making are far from the real Chinese culture.

Tourists accustomed to “new and old towns” like theme parks will not be able to distinguish between real and fake things, even in their own culture. This is the threat of Frankensteinization.

◆ Foreigners walking around the city wearing yukata in winter
Over the past few years in Kyoto, Frankenstein has become prominent in towns. One of them is the trend of retail shops and rental shops that handle inexpensive kimonos for foreign tourists.

The kimonos they handle are brighter in color and pattern than the original kimonos, and are only flashy. The fabric is also cheap, such as made of polyester, and is not made by inheriting Japanese tradition.

Even when dressed up, there are many cases that are strange and stale, such as wearing yukata in the winter, or combining with a gorgeous band with a sense of volume even though it is a yukata. Foreigners who don't know the true kimono culture have the illusion that even these masquerades are traditional Japanese costumes, and they are happy to walk around the city.

In the construction rush of hotels and simple dormitories, such Frankensteinization has permeated the building space in Kyoto.

In a new hotel, an inverted Japanese umbrella was attached to the restaurant's lighting shade. It may be a new interpretation of “Japanese style” as seen from the designer's perspective, but looking at this sight, the acquaintance of the Kyoto people seems stunned. This is because some areas of Kyoto still have a culture that dislikes the opening of an umbrella in the house as an ominous sign.

◆ Japanese abandoned the succession of “kimono” and “machiya”
These phenomena are not only a superficial issue of tourists and business owners' ignorance of Japanese culture and traditions, but also have other fundamental factors. In other words, the Japanese abandoned their traditional kimono and inherited the space of a townhouse.

The kimono and the upside-down umbrella are not simply born from the “design perspective”, but are made by no other Japanese as “Japan that was forcibly created to please tourists”. .

If the real thing is breathing on a daily basis, the fake will be immediately seen and the cheap copy will not be flooded. For example, if kimono rental was done by a kimono store with a long history in Kyoto, it may have been connected to the tradition of kimono culture.
However, unfortunately, in Japan today, there is a “culture blank” everywhere. And as a result of the widening of the gap, Frankenstein is pleased with it.

People who handle historical culture and cultural assets forget the original meaning and provide cheap things for tourists in English called “dumbing down”, or “children”.

Is it OK to have a “Yuru-chara” in front of the shrine's torii?
In addition, the increase in inbound is not the only cause of child-rearing in Japan.

For example, “mascot characters” and “yuru characters” created by national, local governments, and public institutions. The great success of “Kumamon” in Kumamoto Prefecture is a typical example, but now you can greet your character with a smile everywhere in Japan. This is a by-product of tourism for Japanese people rather than inbound.

If you can meet “Yuru-chara” in downtown areas such as the station square, shopping streets, and amusement parks, I think it will be fun and effective. However, if you bring “Yuru-chara” in front of the gates of historical temples, the torii gates of sacred shrines, the precincts, and the side of art, you will not be able to stop childbirth.

Japan's culture of childishness can be seen even in places registered as World Heritage sites.

At Nijo Castle in Kyoto, in order to protect the original lacquer work from deterioration, it is displayed and released in place of a duplicate. According to the Kyoto City website, the restoration and preservation of lacquer work has been undertaken at Ninomaru Palace since 1972.

The Muromachi and Edo period lacquer paintings have a mysterious and meditative atmosphere, with a dull paper color, “foil feet” on the gold leaf, and a deep shade of rock paint and ink. It is a feature. Because of this atmosphere, viewers can think deeply about the years when art has been handed down and enjoy deep inspiration.

ラベル:Fashion
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