Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Akutagawa's prose

Japanese art is eccentricity made organic. It is strangely enticing.

Akutagawa’s fables create odd worlds that are not unlike those created by Kafka. They are less claustrophobic but they are just as natural. It’s some incredible feat – to make absurd seem so wholesome and so consistent. Only in Kafka’s case it was the mental state of one man. Here, it’s the state of the whole nation. 

“The Nose” in particular seems a masterpiece of abstract expression that you can smell and almost taste. Japanese art is like Japanese tea. And I mean that in the best possible way.