Saturday, March 26, 2011

Yell Art!!!

My long-time friend Tomohiko Yoneda contacted me a couple of days ago, and let me know of an interesting project he's just started. I agreed on doing what I can, mostly to spread it not only in Japan, but also in NYC, U.S.A, or to the world. It's called Yell Art . And I'm just yelling about it! :)

We're all heart-broken by this catastrophe, and most of us may feel powerless, especially those who don't have much money to donate. But sometimes, just a simple message or two may make people feel better, when spoken from one's sincere heart.

Here's mission statement by the director:

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Make our prayers to art. Make our art to energy.


YELL ART PROJECT
~our art messages to the people suffered through a catastrophe~


Our hearts go out to the people who lost love ones. Our thoughts are with the people affected by the tragedy.


YELL ART PROJECT was started with our sincere wishes to reach out to those who are suffering by putting together a force of art through the internet, and raising funds through art exhibitions.


What we can do is to live our lives and care about the suffering lives and the future.
Appreciate little things in everyday life while breathing, walking, talking and sharing.


YELL ART is in our everyday lives; a hope to be found in lives of the ones suffered and of ourselves.


YELL ART gathers together the power of creative minds, nurturing the network of support to a groundswell.


Yes, we can move our economy.
Yes, we can share our goodwill.


In the midst of crisis and uncertainty, caring and sharing of each one of us is what makes a better future.


We need your support.


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Samples of works already been submitted can be viewed here. (and of course, they want more!)

So far many named Japanese artists have collaborated with this concept, but you don't have to be named, Japanese, nor artist, if you have message to share!


To submit your work, either hashtag it on twitter   #yellart
or, simply send email to info@yeliart.jp

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Save Japan





It's sadly ironic that the last blog I posted a month ago was about my visit to Japan, with the photo of Mt.Fuji seen from my home.  As already said, I've always had the mixed feeling about my home country, about its social structure, its politics, and certain aspects of its culture, etc. But let's just put these BS aside, none of the above matters now. 


People are starving. People are freezing. People are still missing and dying. 
And they were just randomly selected by the force of nature, all of sudden. 
Okay, you've seen enough of that...and perhaps tired of that. Me too.


Now I'm speaking more personally: I'm not there. My family and friends are. They're still fearful of aftershock and radioactive substance. It just aches me that I can't do anything about it, to my home country I left for my own reason but still love for my own reason. 


I may sound selfish or hypocritical, but therefore I decided to speak of it, hoping it spreads. 
Yes I am aware of that people are suffering in different places all over the world.


But thank you for those who understands, and those who is being a generous big brother/sister for us!


Here are some events I was informed of and plan to attend (and there are so many other good and even fun ones- google for your preference if interested).


3/19 (Sat)

3/25 (Fri)
http://www.bellydancecity.com/2011/03/17/belly-dance-japan-fundraiser-performance-event/


Also on this Sunday the 20th, there'll be people with boxes collecting funds in front of:


Grand Central Station (42nd Street, between Park & Lexington Avenue)  
Times Square (43rd Street & 44th Street on Broadway) 


I'll be filming this. Gimme a holla if you find me!


For those who cannot go but still willing to contribute, here's simple ways to do it (cited from Time




Red Cross: The Japanese Red Cross has already deployed 11 disaster-response teams, but you can support the organization by donating money. Similar to its efforts in the aftermath of the Haiti earthquake, the Red Cross is accepting donations online or via text message. Text REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10 from your phone (you'll be prompted to confirm with a second text reading YES).

ShelterBox: The U.K.-based organization, with 18 international affiliates, has launched an online fundraiser for the Japan relief effort. ShelterBox provides assistance to afflicted countries by delivering large utility boxes that contain a shelter and other emergency-relief tools. To give, go to your country's page and click "Donate."

International Medical Corps: To give to this global nonprofit's emergency-response fund, go to its site, fill in your information and select the amount you wish to donate (be sure to note if you want your donation to be a "recurring gift" for future relief efforts).

GlobalGiving: Working with other organizations like the International Medical Corps, GlobalGiving, a Washington, D.C.-based group, has launched a Japan relief fund that will give aid to on-the-ground organizations providing emergency services. It is accepting donations online, with a funding goal of $90, 000.

Convoy of Hope: This nonprofit focuses on disaster-relief efforts. Donate online or via phone by texting TSUNAMI to 50555 (you'll be prompted to confirm with a follow-up text of YES).

Salvation Army: The Japan branch of the Salvation Army has been working in Tokyo to offer shelter to stranded commuters, and it reportedly organized a team to help in Sendai. It also has a Hawaii branch standing by, ready to assist. Donate online or by texting JAPAN or QUAKE to 80888 to make a $10 donation.

Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF): This medical nonprofit expanded its team in Japan in the wake of the earthquake and tsunami and has groups working in mobile clinics in areas that are inaccessible by road due to damage. While MSF doesn't have a specific Japan relief fund (we mistakenly reported that they did) you can donate unrestricted funds to support all of the organization's efforts. Donations can be made online.

Google's Person Finder: The search giant has launched a Japanese version of its Person Finder tool so that victims and families can locate one another in the aftermath of the disaster. Find a person or offer information about a person here.            






大変ご無沙汰です。
前回のブログが日本から帰ってきた後、そして今回このような形で書く事になってしまう事になったのは何とも言えない気持ちです。

今回の地震および二次災害において、当然ながら個人的に色んな感情や情報が自分の中でとびかっていますが、実際に被害にあった人の想像できない気持ちを考えると、うまく言葉が選べないので今回は控えます。

ただ、NYという遠くはなれた地で祖国のために活動している日本人、または同じ地球上の大事な仲間として世界中の人々が義援金/物資援助やチャリティーイベント等を行い、日本をかけがえの無い国としてサポートしていること、そして悲惨な状況下で希望を失わずに助け合い乗り切ろうとする日本人に称賛/声援が多くかかっているのは特筆すべき事だと思います。

友人のGosha(from Uzuhi)がオーガナイズした地下鉄駅構内でのパフォーマンスイベントは3000ドル超える募金が集まったとの事。


また、NYベースに活動する日本人バンドThe Ricecookersのチャリティライブ にも多くの人が集まりました。(この様子はUstreamで見れます

日本がいち早く復興するのを心より祈ってます。世界中が見守り、応援してます!