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David Bowie theme cafe: Ginza, Tokyo. Alphonse Mucha art nouveau exhibit, Roppongi Mori Museum.

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I rarely hang out in Ginza or Roppongi, the ritzy Tokyo districts. However, I ventured here for two of my heroes.. David Bowie and Alphonse Mucha (glam rock guru and Art Nouveau master). Read on for glorious photos, including a Mucha x Innocent World Lolita collaboration!

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Japan is all about theme dining, as you know from my TV work and book, Crazy Wacky Theme Restaurants: Tokyo. To celebrate David Bowie’s new album The Next Day, Sony turned a regular restaurant into a Thin White Dukedom.

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From March 9-24, the Sony Building transformed its Pub Cardinal (1F, 5-3-1 Ginza) into the David Bowie Cafe.

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Autographed album covers, from the Ziggy era to today, filled every available space.

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Quite a few Japanese businessmen dine here. For a Bowie twist, the restaurant served British dishes like shepherd’s pie.

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The cocktails are named after Bowie’s songs: Cat People, China Girl, The Man Who Fell To Earth.

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My favorite part of the pop up? Listening to non-stop Bowie music. (See my 6-second Vine video for a sense of the interior). The David Bowie Cafe closes on March 24, so I hope you’ll catch it before it’s gone.

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Let’s transition with a… Spider from Mars? Nope, this creepy-crawly sculpture is “Maman” by Louise Bourgeois, in the Roppongi Hills Complex.

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As you can tell from this blog’s header, I adore Alphonse Mucha (best known for his swirly, pastel, Art Nouveau innovations). His works are very popular among the Japanese. Thankfully, I was in town when “An Insight into the Artist” came to the Mori Art Museum (Roppongi Hills Mori Tower 52F, 6-10-1 Roppongi).

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The exhibit had over 240 works by the Czech artist, including rare sketches and jewelry designs.

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Some of his best known works, like the absinthe ads and Sarah Bernhardt posters, were on display. Marvelous to see them life-size — I could make out subtle details, like soft rainbow gradients in the swirls, and the silver sheen of “La Dame aux Camélias”.

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The gallery ran chronologically, from his earliest paintings, to Art Nouveau masterpieces like The Seasons, to his final religious and patriotic works.

Mori Arts Center Gallery, Alphonse Mucha: An Insight into the Artist, roppongi art museum

Look what was in the gift store: an Alphonse Mucha collaboration with Lolita label Innocent World! The brand released a limited-edition skirt and dress, featuring pastel prints.

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These Mucha ladies tights were immediately in my possession.

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In addition to the usual postcards and books, there were special items like Star Jewelry.

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But these “kawaii” versions of the Mucha girls turned out more “kowai”, or scary!

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The Mori Museum is a personal favorite; it has a sky view of Tokyo, and ever-changing exhibitions of artists like Yayoi Kusama.

alphonse mucha daughter, Jaroslava portrait, mucha painting, woman in turban

I don’t think Alphonse Mucha ever dreamed his “Jaroslava” (a portrait of his daughter) would be in the Tokyo subway! The showcase runs until June 15; it’s well worth a visit for insight into the artist’s creative process.

Are you fascinated by Art Nouveau? Mesmerized by David Bowie? Which artists and musicians do you admire, and why?

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