The Great Big Art Exhibition – Take part in the largest exhibition ever staged!

While the doors to our art galleries and museums are shut, let’s use our front windows, balconies, gardens and roofs to celebrate the creativity and resolve of the nation, as we continue through the COVID crisis.

Download your pack here

The Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme Comes to Colchester

21st January 2020

The Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme returns to Firstsite for its 3rd year, showcasing the best of contemporary Japanese cinema.

Under the title of ‘Happiness is a State of Mind: Joy and Despair in Japanese Cinema’, this year’s line-up explores the theme of ‘happiness’. From drama and coming of age films such as Her Sketchbook, to romance and anime like Ride Your Wave; there’s something to suit everyone’s tastes.


Enjoy an exciting and eclectic mix of films that delve in to the rich and complex spectrum of emotions that go hand in hand with the Festival’s theme, exploring ways Japanese people try to lead their own lives in pursuit of personal satisfaction and beyond.

Still from the film, 'A Banana? At This Time of Night?', a Japanese film.

A Banana? At This Time of Night? is a rare work of Japanese cinema with its story focusing on a wheelchair-bound man and his volunteers, as he searches for life fulfilment with much positivity. 

Still from the film 'The House Where the Mermaid Sleeps', a Japanese movie.

The House Where the Mermaid Sleeps calls forward questions on advanced medical technology and whether it can drive the human race towards happiness.


The Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme 2020 is organised by the Japan Foundation, with Major Support from Japan Airlines, Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation, and Yakult, with Sponsorship in Kind from SUQQU and the Japan Centre, and in Cultural Partnership with Modern Culture.

Discover the full selection of films as part of the Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme.
View the full programme


Welcome area at Firstsite. 'Big Hello' (2018) Peter Liversidge. Photo by Jayne Lloyd.

Newsletter sign up

Sign up to our newsletter to receive the latest updates from Firstsite.