Sep 7, 2011
Lots of excitement this week as our first ever manga, Professor Munakata’s British Museum Adventure, by Hoshino Yukinobu, is now printing and will be arriving at British Museum Press HQ in less than two months! In anticipation of its publication Nicole Coolidge Rousmaniere, who has been working with Hoshino sensei on the project since its inception, took a trip to Japan to show the artist the final proofs of his book. We asked Nicole to tell us a little more about her trip, Hoshino Yukinobu, and his thoughts on the English publication of Professor Munakata’s British Museum Adventure. Read the rest of this entry to see what she had to report.
Hoshino Yukinobu is a Hokkaido based artist, who is one of the most celebrated manga creators in Japan. Hokkaido is Japan’s most northern island. Hoshino sensei was born on this large, forested island and currently lives in the capital city of Sapporo. He creates and draws his stories by himself with occasional help from his son and several part-time assistants in his studio nestled near Hokkaido Shrine. The many windows of his new workspace open up to a wooded mountainside. It feels as if the mountain is literally in the room, which during the day is flooded with light. Hoshino sensei though often works into the late night composing story lines, sketching and then drawing.
He has recently redesigned and rebuilt his house where his workshop is located – at the same time he was completing ‘Professor Munakata’s British Museum Adventure’. As a result he told me that this last year was quite a momentous one for him. When I visited him at his home in mid-August I took with me the galley proofs of the British Museum Press book. He is a perfectionist and I must admit I was worried laying out the pages in front of his him, his wife and daughter.
He laid any fears to rest and said he was truly pleased with the production and the supplementary material. The BMP book will be somewhat larger in format than the original single volume publication from Shogakukan Inc., his Japanese publishers. Hoshino sensei liked the new size and the thicker archival paper chosen for the BMP volume. He was intrigued by the Munakata merchandise that will be produced as it will be the first time that Professor Munakata will have his own range. He was delighted that his drawings (genga) for the book will be displayed once again at the British Museum in a small exhibition in Room 91 Lobby from the 29 September to 8 April. Along with the drawings, he brought out a few preparatory sketches for me to take back to the British Museum to add to the display, something that is rarely seen in manga exhibitions, and two of the special fude ink pens he used to draw it.
The next day, the Sunday of the Obon festival weekend, Hoshino sensei was back to his gruelling schedule of composing and drawing his latest work for the Big Comic series, ‘Hoshi wo tsugu mono’ [Inherit the Stars], a science fiction tale of a futuristic space colonisation programme based on a work by J. P. Hogan. Future Professor Munakata adventures will have to wait until after this next series.
Professor Munakata’s British Museum Adventure is available for pre-order now from the British Museum shop online.