Manami Okazaki is an author and journalist. She has worked across the globe, lived in several regions and travelled to over 50 countries but now mostly focuses on Japan.
She has produced 12 books (art/ photography coffee-table tomes/ visual culture collectibles) on Japanese culture, art, crafts and fashion, which have been widely acclaimed by international media. She specializes in traditional Japanese culture, crafts, popular culture, regional identity and branding, iconography, religion and subcultures. Her latest journalistic focus revolves around human and animal relationships (pets, welfare, culture, consumerism, symbolic representations) with a particular interest in cats, dogs and horses. Her long-term projects are represented in her books.
Through her books, she hopes to foster cross-cultural understanding and an appreciation of the print medium. As more people consume and participate in Japanese culture across the world, she works with some of the nation's most well known and influential creators, artists, designers and architects to share information and insight straight from the source.
Many of her projects also represent her work with over 250 craftspeople across Japan, ranging from ceramics makers to exclusive kimono ateliers. She gives talks at cultural institutions internationally on Japanese culture and curates accessible and popular exhibitions with Japanese artisans that appeal to a contemporary audience.
On her time off, she likes the quiet life, Tie Guan Yin tea w her BF, hanging at the beach with her 2 rescue dogs, scuba diving, hot springs, anime, snowboarding and temple hopping. She is also an avid horse rider.
81 (0)80 4198 0545
Books (art direction, production, journalism)
Tattoo in Japan (Edition Reuss, Germany)/ Il tatuaggio giapponese : stili tradizionali e moderni (L'ippocampo, Italy)
JBx Horiyoshi III
Kicks Japan (Mark Batty NYC)
Kawaii, Japan’s Culture of Cute (Prestel, Penguin Random House UK)
Kokeshi from Tohoku with Love (Kingyo)
Toy Tokyo (Kingyo)
Kokeshi from Tohoku with Love (second edition)
Kimono Now (Prestel, Penguin Random House UK)
Creative Sole (Kingyo)
Takumi, Downtown Tokyo Japanese Artisans (Kingyo)
Land of the Rising Cat (Prestel, Penguin Random House UK)
Japanese Kokeshi Dolls: The Woodcraft and Culture of Japan's Iconic Wooden Dolls (Tuttle, US)
Japan's Best Friend (Prestel, Penguin House UK)
Los Angeles Times (Kawaii, Japan’s Culture of Cute listed on the "Summer Recommended Fashion Reading" list),
Chicago Tribune (Kawaii, Japan’s Culture of Cute "5 Great Fashion Forward Summer Readings" Books list)
Fodor's Essential Japan (Kawaii, Japan’s Culture of Cute selected in their "Read This" list)
Asian Geographic (Tattoo in Japan selected in the Best of the Year list)
ELLE JP (Kokeshi from Tohoku with Love selected as "One of three books to move the Soul" list)
Gaijin Pot’s ("Ten Japan Travel accounts to Follow" list)
Elephant Art Magazine (Land of the Rising Cat selected on the "Best of 2019 Art Books" list)
SoleSavy's The Books that Every Sneakerhead Should Read list (Creative Sole)
Wall Street Journal, WSJ Live, the Independent Newspaper, LA Times (summer recommended fashion reading), Vogue (it and de), the Japan Times, South China Morning Post, MTV UK, AFP, Destinasian, Mac Design directory, FHM, Asian Geographic (best of), Number One Shinbun (FCCJ publication), FCCJ Dateline (for the Tokyo Metropolitan Government website), BranD magazine, lomography, time out, Amateur photography magazine, Front, Proper Mag, newsweek, First we Feast, Bustle, La Tercera, Sneaker Freaker, Jet star inflight magazine, Cebu Inflight magazine, address, Kaltblut, shutterbug, (tanoyaku)Toyoko Inn in room magazine, GUP, boing boing, SHIFT, Huffington Post, Skin Deep, Total Tattoo, Flint, the Debrief, O Globo newspaper, Canadian Globe and Mail, i-D, france2 france TV (Leçon de style de Caroline ), Swiss Note, schanufesnter die presse, Get lost, senses lost, Esthetica, Luxury LIfestyle, Herzfelder Zeitung, Japan Lifestyle, Suitcase, Schon!, Kaltblut, destinasian, TWELV, Japan Trends, Art and Sole, Maxim, Max, Media Corp’s Culture Shock documentary “On Beauty”, Radio FM Kronos Sound of Life show, CNN, Tank Magazine, Cosmopolitan Magazine (Australia), Creative Boom, Elephant magazine, Kyoto Journal, NBC Olympics
Showlab (Italy) documentary features,
Culture Shock documentary series, MediaCorp Singapore (fixer)
On Beauty documentary series, MediaCorp Singapore (fixer)
Creative Centre Osaka (curation)
Japanese American National Museum, LA (coordinator)
Sway Gallery London (curation of the exhibition, Kokeshi from Tohoku with Love)
(curator of the exhibition, Land of the Rising Cat)
Sway Gallery Paris (curation of the crafts exhibition, Kokeshi from Tohoku with Love)
Libreria Rotondi Rome (curation of the exhibition, Kokeshi from Tohoku with Love w/ the Japan Foundation Rome)
Kyobashi Edo Grand Kokeshi exhibition w/ the Teruhisa Kitayama collection (photography of Tohoku artisans)
Sway Gallery London, Japanese Kokeshi Dolls, Tohoku and Beyond
FCCJ (Foreign Correspondents Journalism Club in Tokyo, tattoo talk and live presentation with Horimyo)
Japan Expo (Paris, kokeshi pop up and talk, sneaker culture talk)
Japan Foundation (Los Angeles, kokeshi talk and exhibition and London, talk on tattoos),
Hello Kitty Convention at the MOCA (Los Angeles, Talk on Kawaii Culture)
Daiwa Foundation (London, Kimono Now book launch, Kokeshi exhibition and talk)
Libreria Rotondi (Rome, kokeshi exhibition and talk, the Japan Foundaton Rome)
Sway Gallery (Paris, kokeshi exhibition and intro talk)
Culture, arts, photography and travel focused articles:
Wall Street Journal (Scene Asia Columnist), the Guardian, South China Morning Post, Japan Times newspaper (JP), Metropolis (JP), CNN traveler, suitcase, Lonely Planet, J-select (JP), transit magazine (JP), Fraser hotel and residences in room reading (JP), Jetstar, Tiger airways, Cebu Airlines, Bangkok Airlines, HK Airlines, Singapore Airlines in- flight magazines, Destinasian, Sorbet, Shojo Beat (US), Art Monthly Australia, Time out, Among 50+ other publications internationally
Numerous articles have been syndicated to government/ academic institutions such as Japan Up Close, Kyoto Tachibana University, Waseda University, Akahon/ Sekai Shiso, Kyogakusha, Reitaku University, Yoyogi Zeminaru
Attended North Sydney Girls High School (selective high school)
HCS (SAT equivalent 97.75%, all subjects in 90-100 percentile bracket.
Top ten in the State of NSW for Society and Culture.
B/ Engineering Tokai University
1st year ranked 1st, 2nd place, received scholarship
Master of Arts Columbia University, NY (School of Journalism) thesis on Muslims in Hip Hop
PhD CUHK, Hong Kong (completed 1st year, currently on leave of absence)