Japanese event gives new life to cardboard boxes like giant Gundam statues, cosplay outfits

AOMORI – Battle robots from the anime “Mobile Suit Gundam” towered over visitors and kaiju monsters from the Japanese sci-fi TV series “Ultraman” took over the halls of the Aomori Tourist Information Center ( ASPAM) here on November 28 for the establishment’s fourth annual event dedicated to all-cardboard creations.

The “Danborian” event was first held in 2018, to make cardboard boxes – “danboru” in Japanese – in new forms once again before heading to the rubbish heap. The 2021 edition has three sections: one for static works, one for cosplay, and a “smile” section for beginners in the art of transforming old plain cardboard into fantastic products of the imagination. In total, 30 people and teams exhibited works for “Danborian 4” in Aomori city.

Cosplayers in costumes made from cardboard boxes march through the Aomori Tourist Information Center (ASPAM) in Aomori City on November 28, 2021 (Mainichi / Hirosato Nansako)

One of the most popular exhibits was the 10 foot tall “Mobile Suit Gundam” robots that had invaded the lobby of ASPAM. Deeper inside the building, Ultraman’s kaiju enemies, Jamila and Zetton, roamed with other cosplayers dressed in cardboard outfits, posing for photos with visitors.

The day’s schedule included a public conversation with 78-year-old actor Bin Furuya, who played the first generation Ultraman, and a cosplay parade inside ASPAM. A traditional float from the illuminated Aomori “neputa” festival, painted on themes from the manga and the animated series “Flying Witch”, taking place in the town of Hirosaki, Aomori prefecture, was also rolled, breathtaking the crowd.

Toshiya Totani, a 58-year-old truck driver from Kumano, Mie Prefecture, who dressed up as Ultraman kaiju Telesdon for the event, told the Mainichi Shimbun: “I have met people with the same pass. -times I did, and I had a lot of fun talking with them about our work and our techniques. ”

The head of the event committee, Takahisa Mikami, 52, commented, “The attendees are all very lively and the event turned out to be the one that will connect to the next edition.

(Japanese original by Hirosato Nansako, Aomori Bureau)

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