Toshio Suzuki exhibit comes to southern city for the first time, with new merch along for the ride.

Japan’s major cities are usually too big to traverse on foot, but taxis are expensive. That makes public transportation the best way, by far, to get around, and now travelers and locals alike in Fukuoka City will have one more reason to take the bus. Starting this month, a number of buses from operator Nishitetsu Bus will be running around downtown Fukuoka wrapped with Spirited Away artwork.

Gazing out with a smile from the back of the bus is Chihiro, and she’s joined by two other characters from the Studio Ghibli anime film masterpiece. Perched on her shoulder is Boh, in his mouse form, and looking out from the back is No-Face.

The Spirited Away buses are part of the promotion for the latest iteration of the Toshio Suzuki and Ghibli Exhibition. The traveling event, which focuses on the life, career, and sensibilities of veteran Studio Ghibli anime producer Toshio Suzuki, is coming to Fukuoka for the first time.

In addition to some breathtaking art installation/photo spaces featuring Totoro and Spirited Away with Yubaba, there’s also a gigantic library exhibit of roughly 8,800 books Suzuki has read in his life, which he credits with helping to shape his way of thinking and artistic philosophies.

There is, naturally, a collection of classy merchandise being offered in conjunction with the exhibition, including items such as notepads, stickers, T-shirts for Spirited Away’s Aburya bathhouse for the gods, a sake bottle/cup set with flying dragon Haku, and a No-Face tea canister.

And for those with a special appreciation for Ghibli anime dialogue, there’s a series of uchiwa hand fans and plastic clear files emblazoned with brush-calligraphy renderings of famous lines from the studio’s films. These items, not offered at the previous iterations of the Toshio Suzuki and Ghibli Exhibition, are making their debut at the Fukuoka event.

“It was a dream, but it wasn’t a dream!” for My Neighbor Totoro
“Please let me work here” for Spirited Away

“You’ve got 40 seconds to get ready!” for Laputa: Castle in the Sky
“It’s been tough, but I’m doing well” for Kiki’s Delivery Service

Getting back to the Spirited Away buses, the artwork will appear on select vehicles on the following bus lines between the listed stops.

● Atagohama Seaside Line between Nokotosenba and Hakata
● Fukudai Line between Hibara Katae Eigyosho and Yoshizuka Eigyosho
● Aburayama Line between Hakata and Hibara Katae Eigyosho

Nishitetsu Bus hasn’t announced exactly when the special buses will appear or for how long, but with the Toshio Suzuki and Ghibli Exhibition taking place at the Fukuoka City Museum from June 9 to August 31, a similar time frame seems most likely.

Related: Toshio Suzuki and Ghibli Exhibition Fukuoka official website, Fukuoka City Museum
Source: PR Times
Top image: PR Times
Insert images: PR Times, press release
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