This is Manga - The Art of Naoki Urasawa


October 29, 2019 to January 5, 2020

Tuesday to Saturday

10 am - 8 pm

Sundays and public holidays

10 am - 6 pm





This is Manga - The Art of Naoki Urasawa

The comics universe invades Japan House São Paulo with the “This is Manga - The Art of Naoki Urasawa” exhibition, which has been scheduled for October 29, 2019 to January 5, 2020, on the second floor of the institution. The show features the award-winning Japanese artist’s illustrations and mangas and is part of Japan House’s global traveling project initiative, already held in Los Angeles and London.

With a wide range of genres in the Japanese publishing industry, manga is generally published in chapters that continue in subsequent editions. If successful, they are reprinted as special copies and get editions in other languages around the world, making their mangaka (manga artist) world-renowned, such as is the case of Urasawa.

One of the most striking features of this show is the immersion experience one has in the art of Naoki Urasawa, who addresses topics as distinct as mystery, science fiction, and sports. At Japan House São Paulo, visitors will be able to check out seven collections in Portuguese, including work that has yet to be published in Brazil, and around 600 illustrations, sketches, and storyboards. Instead of only bringing clippings of the original work, the exhibition features entire chapters, enabling the full experience of this art, which brings together graphics and the story. Among the artist’s works to be showcased are Pluto, 20th Century Boys, and MONSTER (which have already been translated and published on the Brazilian market), as well as BILLY BAT, MASTER KEATON ReMASTER, MUJIRUSHI, and YAWARA!. New chapters of the latter, one of the artist’s most important works, will be presented weekly, on 10/29, 11/18, 12/02 and 12/16.

About this exhibit, Japan House São Paulo’s Cultural Director Natasha Barzaghi Geenen says: “Manga is a language that is immediately associated with Japan’s pop culture, and has a captive audience that delves into the story of this art, follows their favorite mangakas, and is eager for releases. This exhibition confirms our mission to bring the Brazilian audience closer to different areas of Japanese culture.”

Reading the stories enables one to understand how the creators of this kind of comics develop their work and to get to know more about the concept of this art. Born in 1960, in Tokyo, Urasawa has a legion of fans, adults and children both, around the world. Internationally acclaimed, he has sold over 128 million copies in Japan alone and published his works in over 20 countries. A master in the drawing technique and acknowledged for deep, complex characters, his uniqueness is the strength of his narrative, and he also stands out for the richness of detail with which he creates the universes of his mangas.

His first work was BETA!, in 1983; he then created YAWARA!, MONSTER, 20th Century Boys and BILLY BAT, among others. He now illustrates the story of Mujirushi, The Sign of Dreams, in collaboration with Fujio Productions - founded by renowned mangaka Fujio Akamastsu - in a project for the Louvre Museum, in Paris, as well as being in the initial release of the Asadora! series, published by Shogakukan.

On the sidelines of the exhibition, Japan House São Paulo holds a cycle of lectures, in a new partnership with Editora JBC, themed “Manga in Brazil,” on November 7, 9, 12, and 27. Participating in the panels are manga and comics publishing and digital market professionals, in addition to illustrators and comic artists. Topics covered include the manga universe in Brazil, the influence of the Japanese technique in Brazilian production, and the performance of manga in the digital age. Also as a parallel program, practical manga workshops will be held in partnership with Copic in January 2020.

Collections featured in the ‘This is MANGA - The Art of Naoki Urasawa’ exhibition

YAWARA! (1985 - 1993)

This collection portrays the challenge and growth of a judo-talented girl - bred and trained to be a judoka - and her journey until getting to the Barcelona Olympics.

MONSTER (1994 - 2001)
Kenzo Tenma is a skilled Japanese surgeon living in Germany. He finds out that Johan, one of his former patients, turns into a serial killer. Shaken by guilt, he pursues Johan. This is the first work of mysteries in the history of manga.

20th Century Boys (1999 - 2006)
In a scenario where the whole world suffers terrorist attacks, the main character lives an ordinary life. However, from an event, he realizes that prophecies a friend of his made as a child are coming true. A work of fiction and adventure in which young people travel back in time to protect Earth.

Pluto (2003 – 2008)
A series based on Osamu Tezuka’s “Astro Boy,” specifically in the story The Greatest Robot on Earth. Inserting the author’s point of view and understanding of the original work, the story portrays the stupidity of endless hatred and the questioning of whether robots have feelings.
Naoki Urasawa
Co-author: Takashi Nagasaki
Supervision: Macoto Tezka
Collaboration: Tezuka Productions

BILLY BAT (2008 - 2016)
The story takes place in 1949, in the United States. Japanese American cartoonist Kevin Yamagata discovers that there is the same story told in his work “Billy Bat” in Japan. In this science fiction story, the main character becomes involved in various events tied to the “The Bat” drawing.
Naoki Urasawa
Co-author: Takashi Nagasaki

The series tells the story of a government insurance investigator who, while professionally successful, keeps dreaming about continuing an archaeological survey. The narrative combines the complex mystery - involving hard-to-solve cases - with human drama and family ties.
Naoki Urasawa
Co-author: Takashi Nagasaki
Naoki Urasawa

MUJIRUSHI ( 2018 -)
In this narrative, a man and his daughter meet a mysterious boy who has more than a few secrets and great stories to tell about France and the Louvre Museum.

‘This is MANGA - The Art of Naoki Urasawa’ exhibition
Japan House São Paulo – Avenida Paulista, 52
October 29, 2019 to January 5, 2020
Second floor
Opening hours:
Tuesday to Saturday: 10am - 8pm
Sundays and public holidays: 10am to 6pm
Free admission
Check out the program at www.facebook.com/JapanHouseSP/

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