Invader urban art in Tokyo

In some cases, urban art can justifiably be labeled as vandalism, but French practitioner Invader’s mosaics are firmly in the art camp. Or if not, they are certainly more fun.

Tokyo invader art

He ‘invaded’ Tokyo around a decade ago, leaving behind what appears to be a large number of his creations dotted around the city. Some of which have obviously disappeared. While others have been painted over. But a few have thankfully survived. A measly three of which I’ve managed to photograph.

Pieces that are sometimes fairly obvious.

Tokyo invader art

At other times not.

Tokyo invader art

But are always a pleasure to see.

Tokyo invader art

Baby face bewilderment?

In modern, shrinking Japan, there isn’t exactly an abundance of babies, although it hasn’t quite got to the stage yet when noticing one is a novelty.

And yet as relatively small as their numbers are, they are still clearly fascinated by the kind of face that makes up even less of the population than they do.

Japanese baby

Tokyo Gate Bridge

Tokyo Gate Bridge

Tokyo Gate Bridge opened on February 12 this year.

Tokyo Gate Bridge

A feat of engineering that cost an estimated ¥113 billion.

Tokyo Gate Bridge

It’s 2,618 metres long. Has a height of 87.8 metres. And, due to its design, has been nicknamed Dinosaur Bridge, as it is said to look like two prehistoric beasts facing each other.

Tokyo Gate Bridge

But most importantly, it’s there. And can be walked across. So I did.

Tokyo Gate Bridge

The only trouble is, after reaching the other end, the lift and path are currently blocked, so I ended up walking it one more time than I wanted to.

Tokyo Gate Bridge

A truly disturbing Buddhist statue in Tokyo

With their constantly staring eyes, Japanese scarecrows make for an unsettling sight; one that probably has a much bigger impact on people passing by, rather than any pests they are supposed to be protecting the crops from.

Japanese scarecrow

The truly unpleasant gaze of a student statue revealing what appears to be a life-like face, however, in many ways makes the likes of those above seem positively pleasant looking.

scary Japanese statue

And yet it’s arguable that neither of them have anything on this: a Buddhist figure that is always watching — no matter which angle you warily try to look at it from.

scary Buddhist statue

Japanese eyes everywhere?

Particularly in older Japanese properties, the proverb ‘walls have ears’ rings especially true, with not much more than a murmur from a neighbour, let alone music, often noticeable.

In some parts of Tokyo, however, they don’t just have ears, but also eyes.

Tokyo graffiti