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Styles and Motifs Japanese Gardens

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Item description for Styles and Motifs Japanese Gardens by Katsuhiko Mizuno...

The art of landscaping was said to have been imported from China but as with other imports, the Japanese transformed garden design to suit the indigenous climate and natural surroundings, creating an entirely original art form in the process. A stroll through any of these gardens reveals their inimitable spirit, style and expression.
STYLES AND MOTIFS JAPANESE GARDENS is a highly accessible flip reference for the novice gardener and first time visitor. Each of the 31 beautiful Kyoto gardens featured in this book embody the unique landscaping approaches and techniques of the periods when they were created, from the Heian and Muromanchi eras to Momoyama and Edo.
From teahouses, rock gardens, ponds, and basins, STYLES AND MOTIFS JAPANESE GARDENS features only gardens that are open to the public, making this book an ideal guide for visitors to Kyoto who wish to know more about the spirit and form of Japanese landscape arts.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   62
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.5" Width: 5.75" Height: 4.25"
Weight:   0.3 lbs.
Binding  Ring Bound
Release Date   Apr 15, 2005
Publisher   Japan Publications Trading
ISBN  4889961836  
ISBN13  9784889961836  

Availability  0 units.

More About Katsuhiko Mizuno

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! KATSUHIKO MIZUNO, born in Kyoto in 1941, graduated from Doshisha University and the Tokyo College of Photography. His photographs are on display in the Kyoto townhouse he renovated and converted into a museum.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Home & Garden > Gardening & Horticulture > Garden Design
2Books > Subjects > Home & Garden > Gardening & Horticulture > General
3Books > Subjects > Home & Garden > Gardening & Horticulture > Japanese Gardens

Reviews - What do customers think about Styles and Motifs Japanese Gardens?

Japanese Gardens  Jul 14, 2006
I got some good ideas looking through this book. I am not a "kid" under 13 but found it difficult to find any other place to review this. I was waiting for it to come to my library but got impatient and sent for it.'s small and shallow  Jun 25, 2006
Some joker here said this book was an "Excellent coffee table book." When you think of a coffee table book, you think of a big book with large pictures.

This book is 6's a combed bound landscape pocket book.

Sure the pictures and the short essays that accompany them are lovely...bring a magnifying glass!

However, the essays often point out the shortcomings of the book. In one case, it talks of how a garden was built to be enjoyed from multiple points of view; however, you only get one photo of the garden. In another case, a pond garden is described as being enjoyed from a boat; but the picture is from the shore.

For you zen folk: the nature of the book is not in harmony with the content of the book. A pocket book can never cover the scope of these gardens.

I gave it two stars because it might be good as a learning aid to those studying Japanese gardens...the landscape binding make it a pretty good flash-card system.
Eccellent coffee table book  Feb 19, 2006
Splendid photographs and insightful descriptions enhance the appreciation I already have for the artistry within Japanese gardens.
Making clear the mysteries of the garden  May 4, 2005
It is said that if you cut a Japanese garden with a sword, it will bleed, because the gardener has put his very life's blood into his creation. To stand in the composed splendor of an authentic Japanese garden, it is easy to believe this, so powerful and rich is the aura of the place. Any visitor to Japan will spend at least some time in the famous gardens, wandering and dreaming. Possibly there are one or two Japanese gardens in your hometown as well, if you are lucky.

However, unless you are steeped in the mysteries and culture of Japanese religion, you would no more understand the deeper symbolism of the place than a lifelong Buddhist would understand the icons of a Catholic church. Japanese gardens are not mere works of beauty. In some cases, they are encoded representations of paradise. In other cases, mediation tools to assist in gaining enlightenment. In all cases, they are much more than what they appear.

Katsuhiko Mizuno has kindly written a guide book, a decoder if you will, to the delights of the garden. "Styles and Motifs: Japanese Gardens" is an essential book. Mizuno has made simple the complex structure, elucidating the symbology of the naturescape and the intentions of the gardener. Set into thirty basic motifs, such as "Moss Gardens," "Sand Designs," "Buddhist Trinity Stones" and "Rock Arrangements Symbolizing Eternal Life," the book explains and shows examples of typical features. Each feature is accompanied by a beautiful photograph, and information as to which gardens throughout Japan that particular feature can be found.

The book is compact, and spiral bound, making it very convenient to carry and travel with. Anyone coming to Japan would be happy to have included a copy in their packing.

I have been to Ryoan-ji in Kyoto many times, and each time I can hear people, staring at the famous Dry Landscape Garden (#15 in the book) saying, "Its beautiful, but what does it mean? I just don't get it." If they had a copy of "Styles and Motifs: Japanese Gardens," think of how much richer their experiences would have been!

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