Tokyo-based Ivy Style contributor W. David Marx, whose book on the history of Ivy in Japan comes out later this year, recently wrote about the advertorial pieces famed novelist Haruki Murakami penned for J. Press:
In the late 1970s and early 1980s, Onward spent massive sums on advertising J. Press in the print media. The classic ad format, often seen on the back cover of lifestyle magazine Popeye, showed a Japanese or American man telling a colorful story about their favorite trad clothing item. In 1985, as Japanese pop culture went in more avant-garde directions, Onward came up with a new idea — asking up-and-coming novelist Murakami Haruki to write a very short story inside each month’s advertisement for magazines Popeye, Box, and Men’s Club.
Murakami was given free creative rein with no requirement to include J. Press in the stories. It’s all a fascinating piece of trad history in the land of the Rising Sun. Head over to his site Neojaponisme for the full story. — CC