The newest venture by A Public Space is an annual English-language version of the acclaimed literary magazine Monkey Business: New Voices from Japan. The magazine is edited by Motoyuki Shibata (curator, along with Roland Kelts, of the Focus: Japan portfolio in APS 1) and Ted Goossen.
“We offer nothing in the way of a ‘concept’ or ‘lifestyle’ aimed at a particular age bracket or social group, no useful information to help you get ahead,” write the editors. “Our inspiration for the name Monkey Business is the immortal Chuck Berry tune. No other work of art that I know of deals with the aggravations we face every day so straightforwardly and with such liberating humor. That is the guiding star we follow on this journey.”
The first issue includes literary works by Hideo Furukawa, Hiromi Kawakami, Mina Ishikawa, Atsushi Nakajima, Barry Yourgrau, Yoko Ogawa, Inuo Taguchi, Koji Uno, Masayo Koike, Shion Mizuhara, Minoru Ozawa, and Sachiko Kishimoto with translations by Ted Goossen, Jay Rubin, M. Cody Poulton, and Michael Emmerich. Also included is a manga by the Brother and Sister Nishioka, based on the story by Franz Kafka, translated by J. A. Underwood.
Twenty-five percent of all sales of Monkey Business will benefit Japan’s Nippon Foundation/CANPAN Northeastern Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Relief Fund.