Horitzó Àsia Dialogues

The mission of the “Horitzó Àsia Dialogues” series is to compare the situation of Catalonia with that of the different Asian countries through a variety of topics revolving around the fields of culture, education and enterprise.

The first of these dialogues was held on the 11th of November 2014 at the under the title of “Japan and Catalonia: Crossed Cultural Visions”. It was introduced and led by the Councillor for Culture and Citizenry of the Vic Town Hall, Joan López Carol. The goal of this dialogue was to compare and contrast the cultures of Japan and Catalonia from the personal vantage points of two people with close ties to these two countries.

The first speaker was Àngel Ferrer i Casals, a philosopher and journalist from Vic who has worked as a professor at the Kyoto University of Foreign Studies for 30 years and as a lecturer at different Japanese Universities. He arrived in Japan in the 1960s after studying orientalism in Rome and has worked not only as professor in Japan but also in the fields of translating, interpreting and public relations. He has been and still is a member of different organisations focused on Asia and has contributed to numerous publications. In 2003, the Emperor of Japan gave him the “Kyokujitsusho” award of the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosetta.

The other participant was Yukiko Murata, a ceramicist, glassblower, multifaceted designer and teacher of design and crafts at different Catalan schools who was born in Japan and has lived in Barcelona for more than a quarter of a century. She has participated in numerous initiatives in the city of Vic, most notably oriental courses that she has taught at civic centres, along with her participation with the Nights of Oriental Cinema Festival and Japanzone.cat on awareness-raising projects on the tsunami and subsequent disaster at the Fukushima nuclear power plant.