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POWER OF GIRLS from TOKYO Vol.2 Higashi Kanae(1/2)

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photo+interview : Taguchi Maki (MIG) / text : Natsume☆Chie (MIG)

Since the joint exhibition “Hakuchumu” (Daydream) started in Harajuku in September 2011 it has continued to attract fans from all over the country and the new culture it has created is attracting attention. The third exhibition is slated for this coming autumn. The organizer of Hakuchumu, Higashi Kanae has been involved in other activities including launching her own design knit brand Rurumu in 2009. She is sweet, innocent, distorted and cheeky, and dreams of being like Ninakawa Mika, who corroborates with well respected artists in her artworks.
The interview and photo shoot was held at Asakusa, Tokyo at Higashi Kanae’s request. On the day she arrived at a café next to Kaminarimon with 2 big bags full of clothes, surrounded by an aura of fantasy.

Higashi Kanae:Interview

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●A picture she drew in elementary school.
Taguchi Maki: I want to know what kind of a girl is Higashi Kanae and what is the inspiration for her activities? When did you first start expressing your view of the world?

Higashi Kanae: When I was about 11. I really got into underground movies. I was most influenced by Jan Švankmajer, Terayama Shuji and Maruo Suehiro. The continuous shocking cruelty would draw me in. I also liked Bishoujo anime and manga like Sailor Moon and Cardcaptor Sakura and I would love reading monthly shojo manga Ribbon, Nakayoshi and Chao which I would buy every month.
Taguchi Maki: I see. Back then what games did you like to play?

Higashi Kanae: After school I would go straight home and lock myself in my room and draw pictures and manga and write poetry. I was a hikikomori. In this context I would play games every day (lol).

Taguchi Maki: What kind of manga did you draw?

Higashi Kanae: Light novel type manga, I would write/draw several stories at the same time. For example the story about the family with the father who was a company president, the mother, a famous flower coordinator, and the daughter. One day the father’s company suddenly went bankrupt and the whole family had to do a runner. A subsequent incident led to the mother committing suicide and the girls life began to crumble – but it is a love story you know.
Taguchi Maki: It seems that your view of the world was formed when you were in elementary school. What got you started with fashion?

Higashi Kanae: Of course I liked fashion, but when I was about 18 I thought I should concentrate my activities. I always wanted to express my view of the world through pictures, photography, manga, novels, guitar etc. I wanted to try so many things but my attempts were all half-hearted.
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●When in high school I tore up a stuffed toy and made a muffler out of it
Taguchi Maki: Why did you start the Hakuchumu event?

Higashi Kanae: I got really keen on getting girls together and all working to create one thing. I had created a wide network of friends through SNS who had the same ideas and were into interesting activities. All my friends were trying really hard by themselves, but I thought that the power generated by all these girls gathering together would be enormous. That is when I suggested that we hold an exhibition. We are all so young, and in about 5 years I knew we would all make it. I really hope that it can lead to work for all of us.
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●The first "Hakuchumu” Direct mail
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●Post fashion show photo at Hakuchumu

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