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June 17, 2013 at 12:12 PM

Culture mash: 5 ways to learn more about Japan

The coming weeks are rich in opportunities for Seattleites to experience many facets of Japanese culture: a silent film, museum exhibitions, a photography book and a close look at Noh. Dig in:

1 Silent film: 'Apart from You'

7 p.m. June 17, Paramount Theatre, Seattle; $10 www.stgpresents.org

The Silent Movie Mondays International Film Series kicks off with this 1933 film, written/directed by Mikio Naruse. It portrays “a difficult mother-son relationship and a story of ill-fated love, and an inside look at geisha life.”  There will be shamisen (Japanese banjo) music before the movie and Jim Riggs will accompany on the organ.

2 Exhibit: Beckoning cats at BAM

“Maneki Neko: Japan’s Beckoning Cats — From Talisman to Pop Icon,” through Aug. 4, Bellevue Arts Museum, www.bellevuearts.org

A herd of beckoning cats? What luck! This charming exhibit features 155 of the good-fortune felines made in the 19th and 20th centuries from a private collection, plus interpretations from Northwest artists.

3 Exhibit: 'Future Beauty' at SAM

“Future Beauty: 30 Years of Japanese Fashion,” opens June 27, Seattle Art Museum, www.seattleartmuseum.org

Seattle Art Museum’s first fashion exhibit EVER opens next week, loaded with culturally significant treasures. Curated by the Kyoto Costume Institute, the exhibit will present nearly 100 stunning items from the likes of groundbreaking designers Rei Kawakubo, Yohji Yamamoto, Issey Miyake, Kenzo Takada, Junya Watanabe and Jun Takahashi.

4 Book: 'Quiet Beauty'

7 p.m. Friday, Bloedel Reserve, Bainbridge Island; $10-$15 www.bloedelreserve.org

Photographer David Cobb will discuss how his new book, “Quiet Beauty: The Japanese Gardens of North America,” came together.

5 Theater: 'Invitation to Noh'

2 p.m. June 29, ACT Theatre, Seattle; $35 www.sugoiexperiencejapan.com

Noh is a 700-year-old theatrical art form — the world’s oldest –  featuring song, instrumental music, dance and fantastical costumes. Noh pracitioner Munenori Takeda is touring the West, introducing audiences to this historical and beautiful tradition with performance and interactive activities.

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