The Beautiful and Mysterious World of Girls’ Love at “Yuri Exhibition 2016”
Tokyo Girls’ Update have been focusing on the new genre of works called “Yuri“, which is love/friend relationships between girls. To dig into more about Yuri culture, we visited the “Yuri Exhibition ~A Single Flower that Bloomed After School~” at Marui Ikebukuro Village Vanguard which was opened from February 22nd to 28th.
For this exhibition, eight manga artists (Gido Akagakure, Hachi Ito, Kanno, Torajirou Kishi, Hiromi Takashima, Nio Nakatani, YUI_7, and Akihito Yoshitomi), two photographers (Keisuke Hasegawa and Yuria), and one project (Lilygirl) have participated.
First, when we arrived, panel explaining about yuri appeared and welcomed us into the world of yuri. From the panel, two purely white lace school uniforms can be seen, insisting their selves calmly to the visitors. These uniforms that express the whiteness and pureness of yuri, were worn shooting the photography exhibited here by the project called Lilygirl, which we have introduced in the past. (Here is the link for the past Lilygirl article!)
Next to the uniforms, there expands colorful and different photos by Lilygirl and two photographers, who each show unique perspective of yuri. One of the photographer, Keisuke Hasegawa worked on the main photograph of this exhibition. Not only his photos are exhibited, but his past announced sample photo books are on the table to let the visitors explore what he sees throughout the lenses.
Next to Hasegawa, Yuria’s popular works “Futomomo Shashinkan (Thigh Photography Studio)” were laid out on the wall which showed another appeal of yuri focusing on the two girls’ thighs.
Turning to the back of the photography column, several partitions are creating the exhibition to hang the actual or copied script and drawings for each manga artists. First, the copies of Gido Amagakure’s first yuri comic “Shuuden Niha Kaeshimasu (I will return her until the last train)” greeted us.
On the back, Hachi Ito’s sister yuri comic “Sayuri San no Imouto wa Tenshi (Sayuri-san’s sister is an angel)” was exhibited, and “Ano Ko ni Kiss to Shirayuri wo (Kiss and white lily to that girl)” by Kannno, who drew the illustration part of this exhibition’s main visual, were developed. Every artist drew a Village Vanguard’s POP card only for this event that excited the fans also.
On the back, Torajirou Kishi’s modern yuri comedy manga “Otome no Teikoku (An Empire by the Girls)”, Hiromi Takashima’s pure and heart pounding work “Kase San Series“, and Dengeki Comic Gold Prize Winner Nio Nakatani’s “Yagate Kimi ni Naru (I will become you eventually)” are hanged on the wall with comments. Finally, each unique and different illustrations by YUI_7 and Akihito Yoshitani decorated the end of the exhibition.
We interviewed one of the shop clerks from Village Vanguard Ooiwa-san, who started to plan opening the Yuri exhibition. First of all, she created a yuri-dana (a book shelves gathering yuri publications, mainly manga) at Shibuya Marui City that closed. Her yuri-dana became famous from the customer’s tweet which brought readers and even authors of the manga. After she move to the another store, she created the yuri-dana again and again becoming a good reputation each time. Her passion moved a lot of people and lead this exhibition to be held. Village Vanguard has a custom of definitely making a BL shelves, but not Yuri, so she might be the first clerk who expanded Yuri genre by making a shelve.
She also explained us the target of yuri: “First, I thought the target would be mainly the guys, but I recognized how many girls are interested in yuri. Our store was placed inside Marui (Japanese fashion mall) so that might be the reason why, but still I learned that there is a strong demand by ladies. Also, our store’s unique messiness might be easy to take these kind of books.”
There are several Village Vanguard stores selling goods of the exhibition, and here at Marui Ikebukuro store, where it is the only store that has the exhibition, some goods are out of sale from unexpected popularity. Not only there are original goods only here at the exhibition, but manga and drama CDs of “Ano Ko ni Kiss to Shirayuri wo” which is used as the main visual for the exhibition, were also sold as well.
This time, the give away presents are Yuri Exhibition original folder by Keisuke Hasegawa and “Ano Ko ni Kiss to Shirayuri wo”, and volumes 1-4 of the manga “Ano Ko ni Kiss to Shirayuri wo” (KADOKAWA). Three lucky people will be chosen so apply now!
Yuri Exhibition 2016 ~A Single Flower That Bloomed After School~ Official Homepage：http://www.yuriten.com/
© Canno / KADOKAWA
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