4-1-1 Zenpukuji Wada Bld. 4F, 1670041 Suginami-ku
Closest station: Nishi-Ogikubo/ Ogikubo
Open for events, usually during the weekend
Dis-locate is the small collective of Tokyo residents who are based in the cosy, laid-back space Kosaten, near Nishi-Ogikubo in Suginami-ku. Dis-locate is a very interesting, unique group in Tokyo. Self-described as “more than a simple art project, something other than “community engagement”, distinct from direct activism, it creates its own space in the hope that others will also be inspired to do so”. Personally, I find Kosaten to be one of the most welcoming and personal spaces in the city for people interested in social issues and social interaction.
There are many events to get involved with at Kosaten, on a weekly basis there can be discussions in both Japanese and English about feminism and gender, refugees in Japan, and other contemporary issues. There is also a strong current of creativity and art in the events at Kosaten. As an English-speaker, you can be sure to be welcomed at events with translation provided by Emma, one of the members of Dis-locate. Here you can take part in discussions and activities freely, interacting with Japanese and international participants from all backgrounds. Social activists, refugees, artists, locals. Your voice is important regardless of your background.
Kosaten is a very relaxing space in an older building a short bus ride or a walk away from Nishi-Ogikubo station. Inside there are books and resources, drinks and a warm, comfortable environment to feel safe in and meet others. I highly recommend you visit if you are interested in one of their events. Regular events include;
- Open Art lab in which materials are provided and you can bring your own, here in the relaxed environment you can experiment creatively and make something at your own pace with other people
- frequent cooking classes (often led by an international resident) for a low fee bringing various kinds of people together to learn and eat
- the informal language exchange event Mouth to Mouth
Radio Kosaten, a guest-led radio discussion show exchanging information and ideas about topics often concerning foreign residents of Japan. “Run by migrants, refugees and those with foreign roots”. Anybody is welcome. If you cannot join, you can listen to the show live-streaming online.
Aside from these there are many other events, from art and musical performances, informal discussions and presentations. I suggest you visit one time to better understand the uniquely welcoming atmosphere of Kosaten.
Events are publicised often in both Japanese and English on Kosaten’s facebook page or website. Or you could message either for more information and Emma can reply to you in English. Emma is very active with and knowledgeable about different projects and spaces in Tokyo, I personally have her to thank for being made aware of several of the places I featured in this website. If it interests you, you can ask her many questions about social support groups, activism and art spaces in Tokyo and wider Japan.
Here is a short video about finding Kosaten;