Certificate of Achievement

Mary Templeman Hogg - O'Rourke

has completed the following course:

Exploring Japanese Avant-garde Art Through Butoh Dance

Keio University

This online course explored Japanese avant-garde art through Tatsumi Hijikata’s butoh dance. The course covered topics including Hijikata’s creation of butoh dance from the 1950s to 1960s in Japanese post-war period, revolution of butoh during 1970s, global understanding of butoh and innovative methods for dance education by making use of wide range of archival materials.

4 weeks, 4 hours per week

Yohko Watanabe

Professor and curator at Keio University Art Center

Keio University


Learning outcomes

  • Collect and analyse archival materials relating, performance, dance and related artworks.
  • Explore ways of connecting dance to its historical and cultural contexts.
  • Synthesise information relating to dance’s methods of creation (notation) with its creative outcomes (performance).
  • Collaborate with other users in researching the contexts of dance creation.
  • Reflect on how research transforms the experience of viewing dance.
  • Describe how Tatsumi Hijikata created and revolved butoh dance.


Week 1 - Towards Butoh: Experimentation - Hijikata’s work from the late 1950s to late 1960s, introducing key works like “Forbidden Colours” (1959) and “Revolt of the Flesh” (1968). - The Tokyo Experimental art scene of the 1960s and the influence of Western thinking and art on Hijikata’s work.

Week 2 - Dancing Butoh: Embodiment - Hijikata’s work from the early to mid 1970s, through the series of performances “27 Nights for Four Seasons” (1972), and a handful of works that followed. - Hijikata’s relationship to his hometown Akita in terms of Japanese traditional arts and Eastern body theories.

Week 3 - Behind Butoh: Creation - Works from the late 1970s like “Costume in Front” and “Human Form” (both 1976) to explore the choreographic method and notation behind Hijikata’s butoh.

Week 4 - Expanding Butoh: Globalisation - The spread of butoh abroad from the late 1970s onwards through a number of key festivals, such as “MA: Espace-Temps du Japon” (Paris, 1977) and the first international “Butoh Festival” (Berlin, 1985) and invited foreign researchers’ dialogues, such as Sylviane Pages and Katje Centonze.

Issued on 17th January 2022

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Free online course:

Exploring Japanese Avant-garde Art Through Butoh Dance

Keio University