Yesterday the ninth Tokyo Art Book Fair kicked off, a huge event entirely dedicated to art and photography books with more than 350 international exhibitors. Non only book publishers, but also artists, galleries and art lovers will meet these days in the new location at Tennozu Isle.
Among many events, this year there is a special exhibitions about a magazine which represents female world since decades. 80 Years of Hanatsubaki is an amazing exhibition entirely dedicated to pop culture magazine published by Shiseido, the Japanese cosmetic brand worldwide renowned.
It was 1937 when the first number of Hanatsubaki saw the light and from that moment on more than 817 issues told about literature, style, fashion and art talking to a modern Japanese woman.
Hanatsubaki, literally The Camellia Club, was much more than something to read, even more revolutionary of contemporary female digital editorial product such as The Cut and The Lily. This “girl magazine” was able to present how women had been changing during the latest years and why.
Hantsubaki is the third editorial product by Shiseido. Shiseido Geppo was the first experiment made by the company and it was born as a printed newsletter in which it was possibile to find everything you wanted to know about Western news.
After 77 numbers it was substituted by the brand new Shiseido Graph, a real magazine addressed to the new generations by using big images and visual communication style never seen before. Hanatsubaki too experienced many changes during the latest years becoming step by step visual entertainment first, and a new digital magazine in 2016.
In 2009 a book collecting the best Hantsubaki’s covers was published: from the most famous ones to rare special editions. Hanatsubaki was one of the first symbol of Japanese female avant-garde, especially thanks to its acute editorials and its visual and graphic experiments under Masayoshi Nakajo’s artistic direction.
The balanced mix between East and West far beyond commonplaces is still the most important feature of a magazine that united different generations of women cover after cover.