Events, treatments, activities all get featured here, in the lifestyle section.

JIZAI by Haruo Mitsuta

Last week I was invited to a private view at the Daiwa Anglo Japanese Foundation for Jizai, an exhibition of the work of Haruo Mitsuta.

Jizai Okimono (“articulated animals”) are flexible animal figures made from metal, which can replicate the movements of the original animals. Originally they were made by armourers in the late Edo and the Meiji period – Mitsuta is the only contemporary artist making them, based on the concept of 金属による命の再現 (Reproduction of life with metal).

It was incredible to see them – so intricate and realistic. Such a contrast to see something that looks so delicate made out of a strong substance.

There is an artist talk on the 10th of May, and the exhibition is on until the 14th – you can find out more here.

Have you been to Jizai? Be sure to comment below, or let me know on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram

One Year of Japonisme

Time has flown by – I can’t believe it’s been a year since Japonisme was published.

It’s now in over twelve languages, and I’m so grateful for all of the opportunities it’s brought me so far! Things have changed so much that I’ve been lapsing in sharing and posting on Island Bell, but there are some exciting life transitions waiting for me – new adventures and places to explore, so I’ll be sharing them here, too.

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As always, I’m on Instagram (@ErinNiimi), Twitter (@ErinNiimi). For those of you who have reached out, shared your thoughts, given your comments – thank you. I’m so lucky.

Celebrating Game-Changing Women: Grey Goose x Bvlgari Hotels

Over the past few months I’ve been lucky enough to attend a couple of screenings at the Breakthrough Women Film Series, hosted by the Bvlgari Hotel and Long-Winded Lady Productions. The series celebrates women as filmmakers, as well as female-driven storylines, with the opportunity to see the films pre-release and have the unique opportunity to get to know more through Q&As with directors and lead actors.

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Female empowerment is something I feel incredibly passionately about, and I’ve been lucky enough to work with many organisations through my role in this capacity.

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To celebrate the screening of the final film, The Rider, I was invited to an intimate dinner at the Bvlgari hosted by Grey Goose. The evening celebrated game-changing women not only in film, but in the creative industries. I felt truly excited, energised and inspired by the other guests, who are all game-changing in their fields.

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It was a fantastic evening, and a great way to celebrate a series that celebrates female voices, and commitment to the arts. Films in the series included Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist; Jeune Femme; and The Rider.

Have you seen any of the films in the series? Be sure to comment below, or let me know on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram

Bingo Academy at the Vaults

A couple of weeks ago I popped down to the Vaults at Waterloo for Bingo Academy, along with three friends. We were a little skeptical, to say the least – our group WhatsApp chat leading up to it consisted mostly of gifs from The Golden Girls.

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The evening exceeded our expectations and more – the callers were hilarious, the atmosphere was buzzing, and I don’t think I’ve laughed that much in a long time. It was excellent. I’d only played once before, and the others were complete beginners, but all the rules were broken down and we were all absolute pros through in no time.

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The drinks were flowing, there were Popdogs hotdogs to be had, but in many ways the charm of Bingo Academy was that it was so much fun that you didn’t really need to drink at all (one to keep in mind, as the number of my friends going teetotal is growing).

Bingo Academy at the Vaults, WaterlooBingo Academy at the Vaults, Waterloo

The whole evening was absolutely brilliant, and I couldn’t recommend it enough. It’s on until the 2nd of June, and tickets are £15 (£11 if you’re quick!)

https://www.bingo-academy.com/

Have you been to Bingo Academy? Comment below, or let me know on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram!

I Wrote A Book!

I started a blog about five years ago.

I was inspired by a job I had at the time, working to create content on behalf of clients. The appeal of having my own place where I could share the images that I wanted, and write the copy that I wanted, was what lead me to start it in the first place.

I didn’t actually think anyone would read it.

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Starting Island Bell easily one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I’ve been able to pursue and combine so many of my passions; I’ve met some incredible people; and I’ve even been lucky enough to get some amazing opportunities and experiences out of it.

In September of last year, I was contacted by HarperCollins about a possible commission. The last few months have definitely been some of the busiest (and most surreal) of my life – and now I’m really excited and proud to share that my book is coming out on the 19th of April.

Japonisme is a lifestyle book inspired by my upbringing, and aspects of Japanese culture that I love so much – ikebana, calligraphy, tea ceremony, and (of course) lots of food. I’ll be sharing more from it over the coming months, but in the meantime you can pre-order it on Amazon here!

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I’m incredibly proud of it, and can’t wait to share it. The illustrations by Ryo Takemasa are incredibly beautiful, and it was an honour to work with Nassima Rothacker, who has worked with some of my favourite chefs on their books – her photos are amazing. The team at HarperCollins have been absolutely incredible, and I feel so incredibly lucky.

I don’t think I’m ever going to be able to stop pinching myself over this!

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Give me a follow on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram!

Photo Credit: Nassima Rothacker