Curator, Art Producer and Professor, Tokyo Polytechnic University
Born in 1960 in Nagano Prefecture, ABE graduated from the Department of Aesthetics and Art History, Tokyo University of the Arts. From 1990 to 2001 he worked as a curator for the Canon ARTLAB project. Since then, he has worked on numbers of original projects including LOVERS [Kyoto Art Center, 2016] by FURUHASHI Teiji, molecular informatics [Yamaguchi Center of Arts and Media “YCAM”, 2011] by MIKAMI Seiko, and IO_DENCIES [Canon ARTLAB, 1997] by Knowbotic Research. He worked for the “YCAM” pre-opening office from 2001, and from 2003 to March 2017, he had been both the Artistic Director and the Deputy Director of “YCAM”. At “YCAM”, he has curated and produced various original projects including datamatics  and supersymmetry  by IKEDA Ryoji, ENSEMBLES  by OHTOMO Yoshihide, LIFE-fluid, invisible, inaudible… by SAKAMOTO Ryuichi and TAKATANI Shiro, polar m  by Carsten NICOLAI and Marko PELJHAN, particles  by Daito Manabe + Motoi Ishibashi, Vanishing Mesh , and Korogaru koen series (Rolling Park) . 2016 Berlin “transmediale award 06” International Jury, 2009 Taipei “The 4th Digital Art Festival Awards” International Jury, 2014-2016 “The Art Encouragement Prizes” Jury of the Media Arts Division, and 2017 Gwangju “The Third ACC Festival” Guest Director.
Aesthetician and Associate Professor, Nagoya University
An associate professor at the Nagoya University Graduate School of Informatics. He specializes in aesthetics and arts. For nearly twenty years, he has worked among mathematicians, biologists, computer scientists, complex systems scientists, cognitive scientists, psychologists, philosophers of science, robot ethicists and information philosophers. Since information and life are common topics among scholars in a diverse array of fields, Akiba aims to consider beauty and art in terms of those topics. He is enjoying more opportunities to talk with creators after publishing Creating New Aesthetics [Misuzu Shobo, 2011].
Artist and Researcher
Born in Burgenland, Austria in 1977. He earned a master’s degree in media art from the University of Applied Arts Vienna, and a master’s degree in interaction design from the Royal College of Art. In 2005, Tremmel and Shiho Fukuhara formed BCL, an artistic research framework, in London. He works out of Tokyo, where he mainly explores the impact of biotechnology development and water problems on society, and how our consciousness is reflected in natural, social and cultural environments. He also continues to work on activities outside the fields of science, art, and design. His mission is to use social hacking and other projects to break into closed technologies and monopolized markets to open them up to everyone. Tremmel currently works as a researcher in the Laboratory for DNA Information Analysis at the Human Genome Center at the University of Tokyo Institute of Medical Science, and as a visiting researcher at metaPhorest, a life aesthetic platform at the Hideo Iwasaki Lab at the Waseda University Faculty of Science and Engineering. He is the program director of BioClub, a platform to practice and discuss the potential of biotechnology.
Researcher of Complex Systems Sciences and Professor, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at the University of Tokyo
Graduated from the University of Tokyo Department of Physics in 1984 and earned his doctorate from the University of Tokyo Graduate School of Science in 1989. He worked as an assistant at the Kobe University Graduate School of Science in 1990. He also worked as an associate professor in the Department of General Systems Sciences at the University of Tokyo Graduate School of Arts and Sciences in 1994, and has held his current position since 2008. Ikegami is a Doctor of Science. He works energetically to connect the fields of art and science while continuing his research on complex systems and artificial life. His published works include “Life Emerges in Motion: A Constructive Approach to Life and Consciousness” (Seidosha, 2007), “Sandwich Theory of Life” (Kodansha, 2012), and “Between Human and Machine” (co-authored) (Kodansha, 2016).
Curator of the Tokyo Photographic Art Museum
Born in Tokyo. TASAKA’s main projects include Eizo wo meguru boken Vol. 5 Kiroku ha kanou ka (Quest for Vision Vol.5 – Spelling Dystopia) [2012–13], Takatani Shiro Akarui heya (Shiro Takatani: La Chambre Claire) [2013–14], Apichappon Uiirasetakun Boreitachi (Apichatpong Weerasethakul: Ghosts in the Darkness) [2016–17], the Ekusupandeddo shinema saiko (Japanese Expanded Cinema Revisited) exhibit , and the Second to 11th Yebisu International Festivals for Art & Alternative Visions [2009–19]. She is currently preparing for the 12th Yebisu International Festival for Art & Alternative Visions scheduled for February 2020.
Art Division Selection Members
Web Designer and Programmer
Lecturer, Institute of Advanced Media Arts and Sciences
Curator and Researcher
Lecturer, Department of Creative Media Studies, Faculty of Literature, Konan Women’s University
Artist and Talent
Assistant Curator, NTT Inter Communication Center [ICC]
AR3Bros.(Three Brothers of Augmented Reality)
Born in 1976 in Kumamoto Prefecture. KAWADA went to work for a sewing machine manufacturer in 1999. At his interview with the company, he presented a “Future Resume” that outlined a multitude of achievements that he eventually accomplished, including designing the company’s servers and overall web environment, creating a system capable of handling parts orders throughout the world, and devising patented technology to connect sewing machines to the internet. He left the corporate world in 2009 to become the eldest of the AR3Bros. (Three Brothers of Augmented Reality), an innovative team of developers. He has appeared on TV shows such as Waratte Iitomo! (It’s Okay to Laugh!), Jonetsu Tairiku (Passionate Continent), and Kagai Jugyo Yokoso Sempai (Welcome to the Extracurricular Lesson, My Senior). His recent works include the Hoshi ni touch panel gekijo (Touch Panel Theater in the Stars) at Roppongi Hills in Tokyo, and the Warp suru romen densha (The Warping Streetcar) in Hiroshima. KAWADA is breaking new ground to augment real space through such efforts as the launch of Techno konto (an event for comedians to unveil new skits) in Shibuya. He hosts the critically acclaimed radio show “INNOVATION WORLD” on J-WAVE on Friday nights at 22:00. His genius does not recognize the bounds of genre or media.
Communication Director, Art Director
MORIMOTO is a communication director and art director. She is a visiting professor at Musashino Art University, her alma mater. After graduating from the university in 1999, she joined Hakuhodo Inc. In 2006, she became the youngest ADC member in history. In 2007, MORIMOTO established GOEN CO., LTD. with the motto “Invent encounters, bring dreams to life, and connect people.” She has a wide range of experience in a variety of fields, including title work for the NHK saga drama Gō: Hime-tachi no sengoku and the morning TV series Teppan (Griddle), poster design for Hanbun aoi (Half Blue), corporate advertising for Canon and KIRI, artwork for Yumi Matsutoya and Mr. Children, art featured in movies and theater, and space direction for zoos and nursery schools. MORIMOTO produced the Merry Tick Tock at Futako Tamagawa Rise Christmas in 2018, and served as the artistic director and chair of the judging committee for the Kineko International Children’s Film Festival.
Born in 1974 in Tokyo, NAKAGAWA completed the coursework for the Doctoral Program at Waseda University Graduate School of Fundamental Science and Engineering. Focusing mainly on games, anime, dramas and other elements of culture, but expanding his interest to contemporary philosophy, urban theory, anthropology, life science, and information technology, he has written many reviews that bridge reality and fiction. He is currently the Associate Editor of the critical magazine PLANETS, and is a researcher at the Research Institute for Institut pour la Science Sauvage, Université Meiji (Wildlife Science of Meiji University). Author of Tokyo Skytree ron (Tokyo Skytree Theory) [Kobunsha, 2012] and Gendai game zenshi (The History of Contemporary Game) [Hayakawa Shobo, 2016]. Co-editor of work such as Amachan Memories [PLANETS and Bungeishunju, 2013], Ge-mu suru jinrui (The Video Game-Playing Human) [Meiji University Press, 2018], and Ge-mugaku no shinjidai (The New Era of Game Science) [NTT Publishing, 2019], and more. NAKAGAWA also worked on the screenplay and story editing of the animation 6HP by MURAKAMI Takashi.
Creative Director and CEO, Rhizomatiks Co., Ltd.
Born in 1975 in Kanagawa Prefecture, SAITO began his career in New York in 2000 after graduating from Columbia University with a Master of Science degree in Advanced Architectural Design (MSAAD). Since then, he has been active in creative work at the Arnell Group, and returned to Japan upon being selected for the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennial event. He produces works in the commercial art field which are three-dimensional and interactive while also being based on the firm grounding in logical thought that he cultivated through architecture. He has won numerous international awards from 2009. He currently serves as Director of Rhizomatiks Co., Ltd., while also lecturing part-time at the Department of Graphic Design in the Faculty of Kyoto Seika University. 2013 D&AD “Digital Design” Jury, 2014 Cannes Lions “Branded Content and Entertainment” Jury. Milan Expo Japan Pavilion theatre space director, Media Art Director at Roppongi Art Night 2015. Good Design Award 2015-2016 Jury.
Producer and Game Creator, Square Enix Co., Ltd.
Born in 1966 in Kanagawa Prefecture, TOKITA began creating games using pixel art during the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) era as a part-timer in theatrical activities. He worked as a planner and director, and is currently engaged in production work. TOKITA’s important work includes Final Fantasy IV, Live A Live, Chrono Trigger, the Hanjuku eiyu (Hanjuku Hero) series, Parasite Eve, and Nanashi no game (Nameless Game). He is currently a producer in the Second Product Development Division, Division 6 of Square Enix Co., Ltd., and a director at Tokyo RPG Factory Co., Ltd. TOKITA is also involved in teaching the next generation as a member of the Human Resources Development Committee of the Computer Entertainment Supplier’s Association.
Animation Director and Scriptwriter
Born in 1964 in Kanagawa Prefecture, SATO began his directing career with the 1995 television series Tobe! Isami (Soar High! Isami). He then worked on Kido senkan Nadeshiko (Martian Successor Nadesico) , and received the Seiun Award at the Japan Science Fiction Convention for the 1998 movie adaptation of the show. Nekojiru sou (Cat Soup) won the Best Short Film Award and a Critics Award at the Fantasia International Film Festival in Montreal, and an Excellence Award at the Japan Media Arts Festival. SATO was in charge of the scripts for all episodes of the television series, Gakuen senki muryo (Shingu: Secret of the Stellar Wars) [both directed in 2001]. He received a second Seiun Award for his directing and story editing of Moretsu uchu kaizoku (Bodacious Space Pirates) . Other important work by SATO includes Uchu no Suteruvia (Stellvia) , Moretsu uchu kaizoku ABYSS OF HYPERSPACE Aku no shinen (Bodacious Space Pirates The Movie: ABYSS OF HYPERSPACE)  and Atomu za biginingu (Atom: The Beginning) . SATO is currently working on new original projects.
Professor, Institute of Urban Innovation Yokohama National University
SUGAWA completed her Ph.D. in the Department of Film and Television Studies at the Graduate School of the University of Warwick in the UK. Her focus of study was animation, 2.5D theater and other elements of popular culture theory, as well as audience and fan research. She is the vice chair of the Japan Society for Animation Studies. Her research focuses on audiences and representations of young girls in television animation in terms of gender. Recently, she has been engaged in researching female fans in 2.5D culture. Author of Shojo to maho: Ga-ru hi-ro ha ikani juyo sareta no ka (Girls and Magic: How have girl heroes been accepted?) [NTT Publishing, 2013], she received the 2014 Japan Society for Animation Studies Award. Co-author of works such as Japanese Animation: East Asian Perspectives [University Press of Mississippi, 2013], Teaching Japanese Popular Culture [AAS, 2016], Shôjo Across Media [Palgrave Macmillan, 2019], and Women’s Manga in Asia and Beyond [Palgrave Macmillan, 2019]. Co-editor of works such as Anime kenkyu nyumon: Oyohen (Introduction to Animation Studies: Practical Version) [Gendai Shokan, 2018] and Anime-shon bunka 55 no ki-wa-do (55 Keywords of Animation Culture) [Minerva Shobo, 2019].
Born in Shizuoka Prefecture in 1966, UDA graduated from the Animation Department of Tokyo Design Academy. Starting off as an assistant director trainee in the feature animation film Transformers: The Movie in 1986, he became the assistant director and production assistant of the TV animation Transformers: The Headmasters from 1987, and has since directed many Toei Animation films including SAILOR MOON and YOUNG KINDAICHI’S CASE BOOK. Also directed several TV animations and animated feature films including Galaxy Kickoff, GALAXY EXPRESS 999 Eternal Fantasy, ONE PIECE THE MOVIE, Rainbow Fireflies (included in the Jury Selection of the 16th Japan Media Arts Festival) and Onagawa Chuu Basuke Bu: 5-nin no Natsu (The Summer of the Five Members of Onagawa Junior High School Basketball Team).
Born in 1960 in Ibaraki Prefecture, YOKOSUKA started her career creating animated shorts with Maboroshi (Illusions), the work she created for her vocational school graduation project in 1981. She creates hand-drawn animations primarily with India ink and watercolors on Japanese paper. One of the major works of her animating career is the 1994 NHK PuchiPuchi Anime short Nanja monja obake (Weird Ghost), which was selected for the 6th International Animation Festival Hiroshima in 1996, won a Second Prize award at the World Animation Celebration in Los Angeles in 1997, and was selected for a panorama screening at the Annecy International Animation Film Festival in 1997. She worked on Fuyu no hi (Winter Days) , an animated feature based on a renku poem that was awarded the Grand Prize in the Animation Division of the 7th Japan Media Arts Festival. She also worked on Gaki biwa hoshi (Gaki, the Blind Biwa Player) , which earned a Jury Selection at the 9th Japan Media Arts Festival, and the Grand Prize in the Filmmaker Division at Sapporo Short Fest 2009. YOKOSUKA created the animation for Ugoku ekoyomi (Ecoyomi in Animation) for Suntory’s “Eco Sodate” website in 2011. She took part in NHK Minna no uta / Kimi no hoppe (NHK Everyone’s Songs / Your Cheeks) . She was also in charge of the animation and illustration of NHK BS Premium Tenku no ohanabatake daisetsuzan: Chiisana kenja no monogatari (Flower Fields in the Skies of the Daisetsuzan Mountains: The Story of the Small, Wise Person) . YOKOSUKA currently resides in Sapporo City.
Born in 1980 in Hyogo Prefecture, WADA has created animations since beginning independent studies around 2002, and has produced a series of works based on the major themes of “intervals” and “movements that feel good.” His 2010 work Wakaranai buta (In a pig’s eye) won awards at film festivals in Japan and overseas, including Best Film at the Fantoche International Animation Film Festival, and the Excellence Award in the Animation Division at the Japan Media Arts Festival. Haru no shikumi (The Mechanism of Spring) (2010) was screened in the Orizzonti section at the Venice International Film Festival, and The Great Rabbit (2012) earned the Silver Bear (Silberner Bär) in the Short Film Division at the Berlin International Film Festival. “Autumn” from Antonio Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons (2018) won the Japan Grand Prize at the New Chitose Airport International Animation Festival. In recent years, WADA has broadened his range by creating video installations such as Watashi no numa (My Marsh), and games such as My Exercise. He is currently an associate professor at Otemae University.
Born in 1968 in Hiroshima Prefecture and raised in Fukuoka Prefecture. KAWAHARA worked as a preschool teacher, in the PR department of anime studio Gainax, and at other jobs before turning freelance. Now, she writes essays and provides commentary about manga. She wrote Jinsei no taisetsu na koto ha omune, manga ga oshiete kureta (Everything I Know, I Learned from Manga) [NTT Publishing, 2009]. Her major columns include Ren’ai no otehon ha, itsumo shojo manga (Girls’ Manga Was My Model for Love) for the women’s website SmartWoman (currently Nikkei WOMAN [Nikkei Inc.]) in 2005, and the manga commentary columns Kore yomazu ni nani wo yomu? (Well, What Should I Read, Then?) [2007–2014] and Manga koso dokusho da! (Manga Is Reading!) [2015–2019] for the web magazine Webnttpub. [NTT Publishing]. KAWAHARA has contributed essays to publications such as Sotokushu MIHARA Jun (Full Review of Jun MIHARA) [Kawade Shobo Shinsha, 2015]. She was a contributing editor and writer for the book entitled IKEDA Riyoko no sekai (The Wonderful World of Riyoko IKEDA) [Asahi Shimbun Publications, 2012]. She was a symposium panelist at the 10th Conference of the Japan Society for Studies in Cartoons and Comics in 2010, and has served as a guest lecturer at Tokyo Polytechnic University and Tokyo University of the Arts.
Manga Artist and Professor, Otemae University
Born in 1954 in Akita City, KURATA studied under Tetsuya CHIBA after graduating from high school. After working as an assistant for five and a half years, he struck out on his own. He won the 4th Shogakukan New Face Comic Award and made his debut with the prize-winning Moeizuru. KURATA won the 44th Shogakukan Manga Award in 1999 for Aji Ichi Monme, which he’d begun drawing in 1984. His Aji Ichi Monme series is currently ongoing. KURATA began teaching at Otemae University in 2009. He presently holds workshops in Japan and throughout the world, including China, Korea, Taiwan, Malaysia, Paris, Seattle, Mongolia, and Ukraine. He is a member of Manga Japan, and a director of the Japan Cartoonists Association. He has served as a judge for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Japan International Manga Award, the Japan Cartoonists Association Manga Award, the Gold Dragon Award in Guangzhou, China, the Malaysian New Face Comic Award, and more.
Born on December 26 in Kagoshima Prefecture. Her debut as a manga-ka was in the March 1988 volume of Shogakukan’s Petit Flower with a story entitled Matteiru yo (I’m Waiting). Some of her most well-known works are the STAY series (2002-06), Denpa no hito yo (Radio Wave Man) (2007), Otoko no issho (A Man’s Lifetime) (2008-12), and Ane no kekkon (My Big Sister’s Wedding) (2010-14). Otoko no issho was a Jury Selection at the 14th Japan Media Arts Festival in 2010. In addition to writing and drawing manga, she also illustrates novels. In 2006, STAY – Aa kotoshi no natsu mo nanimo nakatta wa (Stay – Ahh, Nothing’s Happening This Summer Either) was made into a live-action movie directed by FURUTA Wataru, and HIROKI Ryuichi directed a live-action movie of Otoko no issho in 2015. Currently she has series running in several magazines, including Hatsukoi no sekai (The World of First Love) in Monthly Flowers and Ta-tan (Ta-tan) in Big Comic Original.
Researcher, Kitakyushu Manga Museum
Born in 1969 in Osaka Prefecture. OMOTE earned a Ph.D. in literature from the Graduate School of Letters at Osaka University. He was involved in the opening of the Kyoto International Manga Museum at Kyoto Seika University and worked as a researcher of general arts before assuming his current position as manager of art-related affairs in 2011. He also works as the vice president of Kyushu Comitia Meeting, a voluntary group that puts on Kyushu Comitia, a fanzine exhibition and sale established in 2017. OMOTE also served as a director for the Japan Society for Studies in Cartoons and Comics from 2013 to 2017. His major works include Manga to museum ga deau toki (When Manga Meets Museums) [Rinsen Book Co., 2009; co-author with KANAZAWA Kodama and MURATA Mariko], Sabetsu to mukiau manga tachi (Mangas Who Face Discrimination) [Rinsen Book Co., 2007; co-author with YOSHIMURA Kazuma and TANAKA Satoshi], and Hadashi no Gen ga ita fukei: manga, senso, kioku (Contexts of Barefoot Gen: Manga, War, Memory) [Azusa Shuppansha, 2006; co-editor with YOSHIMURA Kazuma and FUKUMA Yoshiaki]. On many occasions, he has also provided commentary and chronological compilations of authors’ bodies of work for special editions of books.
Born in 1967 in Ehime Prefecture. SHIRAI graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts, Painting at Kyoto City University of Arts. She has published her manga mainly through Comitia and other selling events for self-published works. In 2007, she received the Encouragement Prize in the Manga Division at the 11th Japan Media Arts Festival (JMAF) for her self-published work Tenken-sai, which was published commercially in 2008. WOMBS was a Manga Division Jury Selection at the 14th JMAF in 2010, and won the 37th Nihon SF Taisho Award in 2016. SHIRAI has been a member of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of Japan since 2017. Her work includes SHIRAI Yumiko shoki tanpenshu (SHIRAI Yumiko’s Early Short Stories) , RAFNAS [2013–2015], which was the Manga Division Jury Selection at the 19th JMAF in 2015, Iwa to niki no shinkon ryoko (The Honeymoon of Iwa and Niki) , and Osaka kanjo kekkai toshi (Osaka Circular Kekkai City) [2018–19].
Manga Division Selection Members
Researcher of Manga
Associate Professor, Ibaraki University
Assistant Professor, Department of Fine Arts Hijiyama University Junior College
Researcher, Kyoto International Manga Museum
Associate Professor, Shokei University
Lecturer, Aichi Gakusen University
Manga Artist and Assistant Professor, Tokyo Polytechnic University