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From far to near, Japan is a country of 378,000 km2, more than 125 million inhabitants, the third largest economy in the world by volume of GDP and, according to the UN Human Development Index, one of the ten places with the best quality of life. Japan is the panoramic view of Mount Fuji, the hustle and bustle at the Shibuya crossing in Tokyo or the island of Okinawa and its inhabitants, many say, the oldest in the country.

And Japan is also appreciation for beauty and simplicity. Order, perfectionism. It is the Tokyo full of skyscrapers and neon that never sleeps, but also with cherry trees in bloom and Shinto temples that captivate for their spirituality and tranquility. It is intense work, effort; precise technology. Innovation, modernity. Mystery and seduction.

Judith and Damián delve into the history of the Akasaka Shrine in Tokyo

George Yajima

Perhaps all this can be imagined beforehand, but it is not until they set foot on Japanese soil that the visitor discovers the true dimension of the Japanese essence in the first person. And something else: the superlative hospitality of its people. The great surprise that is, at the same time, a great gift. We keep adding, and Japan is also a perfect mosaic made up of its handicrafts, its gardens, its houses, where everything, the result of foresight, is connected. Characteristics and values ​​that define and inspire avant-garde brands like Nissan. Japan fascinates to the point of staying to live in one of its corners.

Japan surprises foreigners for the superlative hospitality of its people, for its respectful character and order, replicated in any space and environment

This is what happened to Judith Tiral, who, for five years, has been traveling the world and telling about it on her social networks and blog. She is a real testimony of someone who came to Tokyo as a tourist and stayed. This is how she learned from the natives and embraced their customs.

Now he has returned, to rediscover Japan on a road trip with the karateka Damián Quintero. He was an Olympic medalist in Tokyo 2020 and has also spent long periods in the country. Up to this point, he had always been attracted by sporting commitments that have led him to get to know firsthand the degree of respect, humility and gratitude that exists in his discipline, values ​​that can also be extended – and, in fact, are extended – to other facets of life there.

To live the values ​​of tradition and modernity of Japan, Damián and Judith have toured Tokyo in a car that combines both facets due to its marked Japanese character, a Nissan ARIYA

To live the values ​​of tradition and modernity of Japan, Damián and Judith have toured Tokyo in a car that combines both facets due to its marked Japanese character, a Nissan ARIYA

George Yajima

Because Japan is based on a series of fundamental principles that govern the behavior of its people. We have already mentioned some of them, others we will discover through Judith and Damián’s journey. An adventure they undertake together with Nissan. It’s not by chance. Precisely, this brand has always absorbed and transmitted the values ​​of authentic Japan and is an emblem of this ancient culture beyond its borders through models such as the new ARIYA, also the protagonist of this route.

A sanctuary and a memory

The first obligatory stop is a Shinto shrine dedicated to the deity Oyamakui no Kami, the temple Hie or Hie Jinja, located in the heart of the Akasaka neighborhood in Tokyo, in an oasis of peace in the middle of the city. Although it became popular in the 17th century, the current structure dates from 1958, as it was destroyed by fire. From here, Judith and Damián will take a memory with them forever, a goshuin.

Judith and Damian collect their 'goshuin' at the Akasaka shrine, a handmade seal offered at all temples in Japan

Judith and Damian collect their ‘goshuin’ at the Akasaka shrine, a handmade seal offered at all temples in Japan

George Yajima

ancient art

Back on the road. Judith and Damián travel the 20 kilometers in their Nissan that separate the Akasaka sanctuary from the next stop: Master Tanaka’s workshop. He has been dedicated to the kumiko, one of the most traditional Japanese woodworking techniques, which was born during the Asuka era (600-700 AD) and has been passed down from generation to generation. Two basic aesthetic pillars influence this technique: the Ma (“間”) and the Sei (“整”), representatives of that timeless Japanese style that attracts and fascinates so much.

The ‘Ma’ (“間”) and the ‘Sei’ (“整”), representatives of that timeless Japanese futurism that inspires Nissan’s designs

If the first is the domain of empty space, respecting its construction, that is, the control of space through skills and techniques without complicated artifices, but based on the harmony of the elements from the beginning, the second is the intelligent treatment of structures. and the details from a design, an element or a function.

The 'kumiko', transcends architecture, for example, the design of some Nissan elements is inspired by the pattern of this art

The ‘kumiko’, transcends architecture, for example, the design of some Nissan elements is inspired by the pattern of this art

nissan

But these two principles, together with the use of kumikoThey transcend architecture and the Japanese use them to design anything. In the case of Nissan, the brand has used and reinvented a pattern kumiko, and has integrated it into the design of the LED headlights and inside the vehicle, to refine the brightness of the lighting. At Nissan they share the same attention to detail as the artisans of this ancestral practice, albeit always maintaining a desire to be at the forefront and innovate.

The ‘Ma’, the ‘Sei’ and the ‘kumiko’, also in Nissan

The kumiko, transcends architecture, for example, the shield of the Nissan ARIYA is inspired by a pattern typical of this art

Master Tanaka makes his handcrafted pieces in his workshop in Tokyo

George Yajima

And that’s not Nissan’s only link to Japan. The engawa, that corridor that connects Japanese houses with their gardens, is somehow represented by an information space that connects the exterior and interior of the car. An example of this is the movement of the information screen, which puts the necessary coordinates and instructions within reach of the driver. An intelligent interior mirror has also been installed, which facilitates orientation.

There is more. Because both the exterior and the interior of the Nissan models reflect that perfect communion of Ma (“間”) and the Six (“整”). The exterior has a single dynamic line that runs from front to back, but it is sculptural, very artistic.

Both the exterior and the interior of the vehicle, a Nissan ARIYA, reflect the communion of 'Ma' and 'Sei'

Both the exterior and interior of Nissan models reflect the communion of ‘Ma’ and ‘Sei’

George Yajima

Inside, the complexity has been reduced so that the technological features coexist with the decorative elements and create a space that surprises with its spaciousness (Ma). The Six It is given by the combination of exterior lines that run through the vehicle and that generate a silent tension crowned by the light from the sunroof.

In the cabin, the six it is represented by haptic controls that are integrated into the instrument panel with simple icons that offer tactile feedback when touched: the technology magically comes to life when the driver needs it. Same as him engawa, that hallway at home that looked like just a wall and yet is essential for the well-being of the home. Pure Japan.

Source: mundodeportivo

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J. A. Allen

Author, blogger, freelance writer. Hater of spiders. Drinker of wine. Mother of hellions.

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