Recently, the Japan Art Academy made an announcement and for the first time, it will include manga, photography/video, design, and film.
Have you heard of the Japan Art Academy? It is the highest-ranking official artistic organization in Japan. This 103-Year-Old institution operates under the Japanese government’s Agency for Cultural Affairs and honors Japanese artists who excel in their respective fields every year by nominating members. The academy members become part-time civil servants with an annual stipend of 2.5 million yen (about US$22,000).
The two newest members of the Art Academy are two legendary manga creators, Tetsuya Chiba and Yoshiharu Tsuge. Chiba made his debut in 1956, his best-known work was Ashita no Joe which ran from 1968 to 1973, has remained a mainstay in Japanese popular culture for decades. The manga has inspired two television anime in 1970 and 1980, as well as two anime films in 1980 and 1981. Recently, it was reimagined in a new Sci-Fi setting, 2018’s Megalobox anime, which credits the original manga as its origin. The sequel series, Megalobox 2: Nomad, premiered in April 2021.
Yoshiharu Tsuge made his debut in 1957, Tsuge is a pioneer of gekiga (dramatic images) a genre named by Yoshihiro Tatsumi in 1957 to describe an alternative style of manga that stresses realism and is aimed at adults. He is perhaps best known for his 1968 manga Neji-Shiki (“Screw-Style”), a surreal story about a man wandering a desolate, post-war Japan.
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