Published April 2023

Noboru Watanabe

Riviera Co., Ltd.
Representative Director Chairman and President

Noboru Watanabe

Witnessing international trends

An early fall trip from Paris to southern France, the Mediterranean Riviera, Tuscany, and Florence. At the Paris Olympic golf competition venue, which is just a year away, I met with the French Golf Association, the International Golf Federation, and Olympic officials. We also visited the Cannes Royal Regatta, a classic yacht race where famous boats from around the world compete for the title, and the Monaco Yacht Show, which is a festival of pleasure boats from around the world. It was a tough but rewarding trip as it was an opportunity to rekindle old friendships with Mr. L. Ferragamo and friends from the Mediterranean.
On this trip, we encountered gigantic superyachts not only at the yacht show venue, but also everywhere. Ladies and gentlemen of the sea flock to the Mediterranean Sea, which not only has a calm ocean environment but also a culture where people who want to spend their vacation leisurely and comfortably by the seaside have a deep-rooted culture.
One of the things I notice every time I visit beaches or cities in Europe and America is the presence of promenades and plazas. The spacious promenade along the seaside is dotted with art, cafes, and events.
You can also take a boat and have a view from the sea side. Nature and the art that can be seen come together harmoniously without straining one's shoulders, creating interaction between people through beauty and the sea. Also, I am always impressed by how the beauty and superiority of the townscape, which has a sense of unity, enhances the charm of a city by the sea, even though fishing facilities, pleasure boats, luxury brands, and restaurants coexist without boundaries on the seaside. I am forced to do so.

Sowing “seeds” from a perspective from the sea side
Promoting art and culture in Shonan and Ikebukuro

My desire to make Sagami Bay an even more wonderful place grew even stronger during my trip to the Mediterranean Sea. On the other hand, I really feel that the sea of ​​Shonan, with its view of Mt. Fuji spreading out before our eyes, is on par with the Mediterranean Sea. The Shonan Coast from Miura to Yugawara has great potential, and I believe that the power of art and culture will surely contribute to the revitalization of the wider region. And I hope that the Shonan International Art Festival will become a part of that process.
This is the first step, and we are grateful for the spirit of the master teachers who agreed with the idea. First of all, if we sow the seeds in this way, what kind of chemical reactions will occur next? 
This is Shonan after all. I'm really looking forward to seeing art transmitted from this sea, where famous writers and artists have lived, and where many artists have been nurtured. The exhibition period is November 11th to 10th. Mr. Ryohei Miyata (craft artist), Chairman of the Board of Directors of Nitten, who serves as the 12nd Commissioner of the Agency for Cultural Affairs and is also a member of the Japan Academy of Arts, and Mr. Mineo Kobe (sculptor), a member of the Japan Academy of Arts and vice president and secretary general of Nitten There will be forums and exhibitions of works by these artists.
From November 11st to 1rd, please look forward to the fall art and culture promotion in conjunction with the second “Riviera Art Fair 3” to be held at Riviera Tokyo in Ikebukuro.

To make the next era better
I want to learn from the past

You can get a glimpse of the history of the battles from the murals, paintings, and sculptures left at historic sites in Europe. Looking at them, I think of the places where battles are still being fought. We are approaching the Paris Olympics next year, which is considered a festival of peace, but the world is not at peace.
We want to learn from the past and create a society where we can entrust our dreams and hopes to the future. I believe that tackling the mounting challenges with sincerity and care will definitely make the next era better.

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