JIN-324 -- 1. Thoughts on the Anniversary of Togo's Death 2. The Return of the Impressionist Paintings

T H E J @ P A N I N C N E W S L E T T E R
Commentary on the Week's Business, Technology and Cultural News

Issue No. 324
Thursday June 9, 2005 TOKYO

1. Thoughts on the Anniversary of Togo's Death
2. The Return of the Impressionist Paintings

Entrepreneur's Handbook Seminar

Terrie Lloyd, founder of over 12 start-up companies in Japan
will be giving an English-language seminar and Q&A on starting
up a company in Japan. This is an ideal opportunity to find
out what is involved, and to ask specific questions that are
not normally answered in business books. All materials is
For more details: http://japaninc.com/handbook_seminar3/

Nikkei Net Interactive 7-Day FREE Trial Offer

Japanese business never looked so good!
Experience the new-look Nikkei with more news on the front
page, extra editorial selections, additional topics and
highlighted news from Nikkei's newspapers.

Click through for your FREE 7-Day Trial today!

1. Thoughts on the Anniversary of Togo's Death

Heihachiro Togo, whose combined fleet sent the Russian
Baltic fleet to the bottom of the sea in the Battle of
Tsushima in 1905, died in 1934, 29 years after that splendid
victory. May 30 was the anniversary of his death.

Worshipped as the admiral who delivered the nation from a
calamity, Togo was given a state funeral. Early there was
a movement to enshrine him as a god. Togo Shrine, in Shibuya
Ward, Tokyo, was the result. The young people who gather
in nearby Harajuku perhaps have never heard of him. But he
was a figure of world renown in the early 20th century.

Hiroyuki Agawa, in his book on Admiral Narumi Inoue,
criticizes Togo's deification. At the very beginning of the
book Inoue says, "A human being should not be made a god,
because a god is above criticism." His comment was in
response to junior officers who invoked Togo in arguing for
military expansion.

Toward the end of his life the old admiral of the fleet was said
to believe anything a visitor told him. Once an old man of
authority gets an idea into his head, he can be difficult to manage.

Three years after Togo's death, the Sino-Japanese War broke
out, and Japan began its descent to the abyss. Today Japanese
political and business leaders are still wrestling with the problem
of how to show respect to persons who have rendered great service.

Web usability testing with eye tracking technology

Your web site should be as easy to use and as accessible as
possible for your visitors. In order to provide our clients
with the most accurate information in regards to web
usability Ashley Associates has invested into eye tracking
technology which yields measurable results. Increase return
visits, increase online sales and decrease abandoned shopping
carts through our consulting services.

Ashley Associates Ltd.
is a leading provider of web consulting, information
architecture, web maintenance and web hosting solutions.
For more information, or to request an initial consultation
please contact info@ashleyassociates.co.jp.


Creating Project Success
Reducing project risk to reduce time-to-market and
increase shareholder value is the focus of our services.
We help corporate executives, project sponsors, project
management and other stakeholders address project risk and
help them be more proactive by employing Risk Identification
and Contingency Planning methodologies.
E-mail: info@pm-global.com

2. The Return of the Impressionist Paintings

Earlier this week, Wood One Museum of Art in Hatsukaichi,
Hiroshima Prefecture, purchased French Impressionist
Pierre-Auguste Renoir's "Etude de femme" and "La femme au
panier de fleurs" for 310 million yen, the second most expensive
art purchase ever in Japan. The purchase suggests the Japanese
love affair with impressionism continues and recalls the fate of
the masterpieces the Japanese scooped up during the heady
years of the bubble economy

It was 15 years ago that Ryoei Saito, the honorary chairman of
Daishowa Paper Manufacturing Co., successfully bid at Christie's
in New York $82.5 million, the largest sum ever for a painting,
for Van Gogh's "Portrait of Dr. Gachet." The 75-year-old industrialist
kicked up an international fuss when he said he would like the
painting cremated with him upon his death. He died in 1996.
Presumably "Dr. Gachet" did not follow Saito to the mortuary urn.
However, the painting's whereabouts remain a mystery.

Afterward, the bubble went bang and many masterpieces were
hurled overseas, where they now rest once again in private

The Japanese love affair with impressionism can be partly traced
to Ryusaburo Umehara (1888-1986), who studied in Europe from age
20 to 25. During his European sojourn he was inspired by Renoir's
paintings. He decided he must meet the master. So one day in the
winter of 1909 he walked across the Italian border to Cagnes in the
south of France, where Renoir lived. He succeeded in meeting him.

In the second decade of the 20th century Umehara produced many
paintings with a soft tone a la Renoir. His works were characterized
by bright colors and a feeling of vitality. Because he became the
central figure in modern oil painting in Japan, the meeting of the
master of impressionism and the unknown Asian youth can be
described as helping to create the starting point of modern
Japanese aesthetic feeling.

With economic recovery in Japan, provincial museums are purchasing
many of the works that flowed overseas after the bubble burst.
Japanese aficionados of art will be glad to renew their acquaintance
with masterpieces that have been on a global odyssey driven by
speculation arising from the oversupply of money.

-- Burritt Sabin

Resident First Co., Ltd. - "City Living at its Best"

Are you looking for a better quality of life right in the
middle of Tokyo? Are you considering upgrading your apartment?
Let us know your wishes, and we are confident we can provide
you a residence that will make your stay in Japan pleasant
and memorable.
* Area: Roppongi, Aoyama, Azabu, Hiroo, Omotesando,
Akasaka, etc.
* Rent: 200,000 yen - over 1,000,000 yen

For more information, please visit
or call free dial 0120-317-039.

STAR Financial Management

Providing retail and institutional investors with bespoke,
non-commission driven investment advice and portfolio
management services. STAR is totally focused on adding value
for its clients through superior risk-adjusted rates of
return whilst delivering the highest levels of professional
excellence, integrity and service. For more information, go
to www.starfml.com or contact us at 03-3667-1671.
STAR Financial Management is licensed and regulated by the
Ministry of Finance (Japan) - License no. 1237 Kanto region

SUBSCRIBERS: 29,326 as of June 3, 2005

Written and edited by Burritt Sabin (editors2@japaninc.com)

(C) Copyright 2005 Japan Inc Communications KK. All Rights Reserved.