Emerging manga artists exhibit work at UOW

Emerging manga artists exhibit work at UOW

A collection of art works inspired by Japanese manga and anime will be on exhibition at the University of Wollongong from Friday 24 October to 8 November.

Untitled by Sonoko Fukushima from Japan

Protean Borders: Trans-cultural Encounters with Japanese Popular Culture features work by a diverse group of established and emerging contemporary artists from Japan and Australia, each favouring a different style and genre of manga (Japanese comics).

The exhibition is curated by visual arts lecturer Dr Agnieszka Golda and Kristine Michelle Santos, a PhD student in the Faculty of Law, Humanities and the Arts. Both of whom were exposed to Japanese art and cartoons as children in their home country – Poland and the Philippines respectively.

“Ninty per cent of the artists featured here started out as a fan of manga; they’re artists we met and became familiar with through fan conventions in Australia,” they said.

The exhibition complements a two-day international academic manga conference at UOW that will be attended by Australian, US and Japanese scholars.

Artwork by Japanese artist Sonoko Fukushima

As part of an outreach initiative by UOW, 40 high school students who are currently studying Japanese language or culture will attend a manga drawing workshop with visiting artists Sonoko Fukushima from Japan and Yoo Sookyung, a Korean born manga artist based in Japan.

“Manga is a cornerstone of Japanese popular culture and has overcome many barriers to become the country’s biggest cultural and artistic export,” conference organiser and UOW academic Professor Mark McLelland said.

“The increasing availability and popularity of manga has helped create a generation of youth whose heroes have shifted from Batman to Naruto. Consequently, manga is attracting scores of fans to Japanese language and culture studies so they can access a range of authentic - unmodified - manga,” Professor McLelland added.

The Manga Futures conference is organised in cooperation with Japan’s Kyoto Seika University International Manga Research Center (IMRC). President of KSU, Professor Keiko Takemiya, who is also a renowned manga artist, will deliver a keynote at the conference. As will Professor Jacqueline Berndt, deputy director of the IMRC.

Protean Borders exhibition
Curated by UOW visual arts lecturer and artist Dr Agnieszka Golda and Kristine Michelle Santos, Protean Borders: Trans-cultural Encounters with Japanese Popular Culture is a collection of work by emerging contemporary manga artists that are influenced by the various elements of art, design and narratives seen within this genre. Artists showing at this exhibition are: 

  • Sonoko Fukushima and Sookyung Yoo from Japan;
  • Dr Agnieszka Golda and Martin Johnson, Amei Zhao, Carolyn Gan, Fiona Chor-Kay Chan (Miyukiko), Jessica Thomas, Sarah Boxall, Tatiana Davidson and Queenie Chan from Australia.

Dr Agnieszka Golda hangs art work in the TAEM gallery

This exhibition is made possible with the support of the UOW Faculty of Law, Humanities and the Arts, the Japan Foundation and artists from the International Manga Research Center, Kyoto Seika University.

When: 24 October – 8 November, 9 am - 5 pm weekdays. Entry is free.
Where: TAEM Gallery, Building 25
Children under 15 years should be accompanied by an adult.

Manga student workshop
Approximately 40 high school students with an interest in Japanese culture and language will attend the Manga Activity Day hosted by UOW in conjunction with Kyoto Seika University’s International Manga Research Centre. Students will participate in a manga drawing workshop, which will include a demonstration of manga techniques by two manga artists Sookyung Yoo and Sonoko Fukushima. Students will also visit the Protean Borders exhibition and view an anime movie.

Students are from the following schools: Smith’s Hill High School; Barrenjoey High School; Broughton Anglican College; Holy Cross College Ryde; Georges River College; Mount St Benedict High School; St Mary Star of the Sea College; Canterbury Girls High School; Brigidine College Randwick; Corpus Christi Catholic High School; Kogarah High School; MLC School.

When: Friday 31 October, 9am - 2:30pm

Where: Building 24, Room G01

Manga Futures conference
Manga Futures is an international scholarly conference on manga brining together some of Japan’s leading manga studies scholars at the Kyoto Seika University’s International Manga Research Center with leading Japan studies scholars from Australia and the US. Participants consider the state of the field of “manga studies” internationally, discuss methods and approaches to the study of manga culture, and consider how young people‘s interest in manga and Japanese popular culture more widely can be harnessed to increase global understanding and appreciation of Japanese language and culture.

When: 1 – 2 November
Where: Building 25