Jul 23, 2021

Daruwana, the Samurai from Sri Lanka (Pics) Featured

With the Olympic fever settling in, fresh attention has been given to a project where a group of Japanese artists are hoping to help people embrace both the Olympic spirit and Japanese culture by re-imagining flags of competing countries as Samurai characters.

Nations large and small are represented in the World Flags project, including India, South Africa, Great Britain, Sri Lanka, El Salvador and Turkey.

The Sri Lankan Samurai - Daruwana, nicknamed as 'Golden Lion', with his small lion - Roysen has caused waves on the Internet since its creation while also inspiring many artists to publish their own take. Click here to see his full profile

"Samurais are unique to Japan and we want everyone to get to know traditional Japanese culture," creator Kamaya Yamamoto said.

"We received so many messages online from Sri Lankans telling us how cool it is that we've turned their country into a Samurai," Mr Yamamoto says proudly.

He starts by researching the meaning and history of a country's flag as well as the colours and design, and then researches their culture. Each character also comes with a short write-up on their personality, strengths and weaknesses - a bit like a character in a video game.

"We hope this can be a way for people to learn about other countries," says Kozo Yamada, another artist on the project.

"That's what the Olympics are about."

Even though the online initiative seems like a fitting promotional campaign for the Tokyo Olympics, the 15 people behind the project don't make any money from it and do it in their free time.

They have so far made samurais out of the flags of 84 of the 200 competing countries.

(Excerpts : BBC News)

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