When a local TV stationfeatured Togura Kamiyamada Onsen last month on their Saturday morning variety show, they had talked about our town’s “Showa Retro” feel.
What exactly is “Showa Retro”? Is it a classic style that brings back warm memories of the 60’s and 70’s — all the garish neon of the bar district and the familiar appearance of the inns built in the era?
Or does it refer to a dismal impression that no improvements have been made since the 60’s and 70’s — stemming from all the dilapidated buildings from the period?
As part of the the TV show, local celebrity Sanshiro-san came and took pictures of our onsen town’s “Showa Retro” scenes. Their pictures are on display at a temporary gallery set up in an empty store front across the street from Arita-ya Ryokan on Kamiyamada Onsen’s main street. The gallery will be open from 9am to 5pm through the month of June.
Seeing our onsen town through Sanshiro’s eyes makes one realize that “Showa Retro” is a mix of memories and dilapidation. For people who didn’t grow up during that era, you look at some of the architecture and ponder what were they thinking when they built that? But there are many people who saw those buildings during the Showa heydays, and for whom those styles have great appeal.
Come and check out Sanshiro’s pictures in the gallery, then go for walk around Togura Kamiyamada and see the Showa Retro scenes yourself!