Monthly Archives: July 2016

Summer Sweets

The other day, my friend brought me this block-type summer sweets.

It is named “murmur of the brook,” and blue maple leaves are designed on the package and sweets itself!

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Mainly made from sugar syrup, agar, and sweet beans,  it’s refreshing just  to look at it.  whole

It’s so nice to have this kind of juicy sweets on these hot summer days!

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Juko-in, Daitoku-ji Kyoto

Daitoku-ji is one of the most established Zen temples in Kyoto, dates back in 1315.
In 16th century, by the support of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, it became a center of cultural activity
through its association with the tea master Sen no Rikyu.

kyoto, daitokuji, art, juko-in

Daitoku-ji also possesses numerous cultural treasures in the form of landscape gardens, calligraphy, sliding screen paintings, hanging scrolls, tea houses, and many implements associated with the tea ceremony.
Many of the finest of these treasures are located in Daitoku-ji’s twenty-two subtemples.

I visited one of those subtemples, Juko-in, to see the special exhibition of sliding screen paintings by Kano Eitoku and his father, Kano Shoei.

kyoto, daitokuji,

This garden is said to be designed by Kano Eitoku, and arranged by Sen no Rikyu.

kyoto, daitokuji, garden

Main Hall’s sliding screen paintings are the works of Kano Eitoku at the age of 24.
“Flowers and Birds”, designated as National Treasure.

kyoto, daitokuji, art, kanou eitoku

kyoto, daitokuji, art, kanou eitoku

kyoto, daitokuji, art, kanou eitoku

kyoto, daitokuji, art, kanou eitoku

kyoto, daitokuji, art, kanou eitoku

These are also National Treasure paintings by Kano Eitoku, “Kinki Shoga-zu(Paintings of the Four Elegant Pastimes)”

kyoto, daitokuji, art, kanou eitoku

kyoto, daitokuji, art, kanou eitoku

kyoto, daitokuji, art, kanou eitoku

I liked Kano Shoei’s cute monkeys.

kyoto, daiotku-ji, kanou shouei

Important Cultural Property., tea house “Kan-in-seki”.
Only three tatamis large.

tearoom

Daitoku-ji’s red Sanmon.

sanmon1

It is well known for  this second story.

When Sen no Rikyu renovated this Sanmon, he installed images of Shakyamuni and other buddhist statues,  along with one of himself.
This angered Hideyoshi that the latter ordered Rikyu to commit ritual suicide in 1481.

kyoto, daitokuji

For more information: Daitoku-ji

Miyagawa Kouzan at The Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka

This year marks the 100th anniversary of Miyagawa Kouzan(1842-1916)’s death.

I went to see his retrospective exhibition at The Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka.

osaka, yodoyabashi, toyotoji museum, museum

osaka, yodoyabashi, toyotoji museum, museum

He lived in late Tokugawa shogunate to Meiji Restoration.

In 1870 he moved to Yokohama and opened his workshop to produce ceramics for export.
His works, known as Makuzu ware,  inherits the traditional Kyoto pottery  style.
The application of strikingly elaborate, sculptural decoration called taka-ukibori(sculptural relief) is Kozan’s original technique.
They were exhibited in the Philadelphia World Exhibition in 1876 and the name “Makuzu ware” won high reputation.

toyotoji museum, miyagawa kouzan, potterly, japan

WATER JAR WITH COVER, pottery with peony design and an awakening cat in taka-ukiboritoyotoji museum, miyagawa kouzan, potterly, japan

Important Cultural Property:FLOWER VASE, pottery with brown glaze and crabs in taka-ukiboritoyotoji museum, miyagawa kouzan, potterly, japan

Here is another flower vase with armed frogs in taka-ukiboritoyotoji museum, miyagawa kouzan, potterly, japan

toyotoji museum, miyagawa kouzan, potterly, japan

toyotoji museum, miyagawa kouzan, potterly, japan

These are WATER JAR WITH COVER, with 4 windows in takauki-bori.

toyotoji museum, miyagawa kouzan, potterly, japan

Inside the window!toyotoji museum, miyagawa kouzan, potterly, japan

Here is another FLOWER VASE with……

toyotoji museum, miyagawa kouzan, potterly, japan

Monkey inside!

toyotoji museum, miyagawa kouzan, potterly, japan

Kozan’s progress was unstoppable.
After he established the sculptural relief pottery style, he then made tremendous efforts on the study of glazes and Chinese ancient ceramics.
His perfect works representing art and pottery are really breathtaking.

 

Important Cultural Property:FLOWER VASE, porcelain with plum tree design in iron brown paint on a yellow-grazed ground.toyotoji museum, miyagawa kouzan, potterly, japan

Another flower vase of hydrangea design.toyotoji museum, miyagawa kouzan, potterly, japan

This exhibition introduces the overall picture of Kozan, who was the driving force of modern Japanese pottery.

By the way, The Museum of Oriental Ceramics,Osaka is located in Yodoyabashi, Osaka-city.
This area is very relaxing, it may be nice to stroll along the river.

osaka, yodoyabashi,

osaka, yodoyabashi,

osaka, yodoyabashi,

osaka, yodoyabashi,

For more information: The Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka 

Summer jelly sweets from Toraya

My friend brought me these soft adzuki-bean jelly from Toraya,  one of the most long-established confectionery shops in Japan.

Toraya’s main product is adzuki-bean jelly, most of the time in block type.

They offer “soft type ” in summer, which contains more water, and refreshing to taste.

According to the ingredients, there are 4 flavours.

japan,sweets, toraya,

japan,sweets, toraya,

Sharing two flavours…..

japan,sweets, toraya,

Or four flavours….

japan,sweets, toraya,

Anyway, it’s so nice to have sweet soft watery sweets in hot summer!

japan,sweets, toraya,

For more information: Toraya

Framed woodblock print by Takeuchi Seihou

Framed woodblock print by Takeuchi Seihou.

japan,art,frame,seihou takeuchi,bird

Takeuchi Seihou (1864-1942) is regarded as a pioneer of modern Japanese-style painting,followed by many disciples.

His pictures have a sophisticated beauty and refinement, and his paintings of plants and animals are highly-praised.

He was one of the first to receive the Order of Culture by Japanese government.

japan,art,seihou takeuchi,bee

japan,art,frame,seihou takeuchi,bird

japan,art,frame,seihou takeuchi,bird

japan,art,frame,seihou takeuchi,bird

Framed in wood frame made in Japan, dark navy velvet matted.

japan,art,frame,seihou takeuchi,bird

japan,art,frame,seihou takeuchi,bird

japan,art,takeuchi seihou,bird

This piece is a woodblock print by Unso-do.

Unso-do  is founded in Kyoto in 1891, and is the only fine arts publishing house that features woodblock prints created by hand.

If you know quite a lot about Japanese art, you may have heard of its name.

japan,art,frame,seihou takeuchi,bird

 

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Framed woodblock print by Takeuchi Seihou

Framed woodblock print by Takeuchi Seihou.

japan,art,seihou takeuchi,bee

Takeuchi Seihou (1864-1942) is regarded as a pioneer of modern Japanese-style painting, followed by many disciples.

His pictures have a sophisticated beauty and refinement, and his paintings of plants and animals are highly-praised.

He was one of the first to receive the Order of Culture by Japanese government.

japan,art,seihou takeuchi,bee

japan,art,seihou takeuchi,bee

japan,art,seihou takeuchi,bee

japan,art,seihou takeuchi,bee

japan,art,seihou takeuchi,bee

Framed in wood frame made in Japan, dark navy velvet matted.

japan,art,seihou takeuchi,bee

japan,art,takeuchi seihou,bee

This piece is a woodblock print by Unso-do.

Unso-do is founded in Kyoto in 1891, and is the only fine arts publishing house that features woodblock prints created by hand.

If you know quite a lot about Japanese art, you may have heard of its name.

japan,art,frame,seihou takeuchi,bird

【SHOP NOW ON eBay STORE】

US $ 120  FREE SHIPPING

KUNIYOSHI KUNISADA at Kobe City Museum

Went to see “KUNIYOSHI & KUNISADA”-From the Collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, at Kobe City Museum.

japan, art, ukiyoe, kuniyoshi, kunisada

200 years ago, at a time when no televisions or magazines existed, Ukiyo-e woodblock prints excelled in Japan as an important media for conveying the latest entertainment or fashion trends, or serving as pinups of Kabuki stars.

Displayed works are far more exciting than I expected.
Also it’s interesting that they are chosen from the world-renowned Museum of Fine Arts, Boston’s pristine collection.

japan, art, ukiyoe, kuniyoshi, kunisada

Utagawa Kuniyoshijapan, art, ukiyoe, kuniyoshi, kunisada

Utagawa Kuniyoshikuniyoshi4

japan, art, ukiyoe, kuniyoshi, kunisada

Utagawa Kuniyoshijapan, art, ukiyoe, kuniyoshi, kunisada

Utagawa Kunisadajapan, art, ukiyoe, kuniyoshi, kunisada

Utagawa Kunisadakunisada

Utagawa Kuniyoshijapan, art, ukiyoe, kuniyoshi, kunisada

Utagawa Kuniyoshijapan, art, ukiyoe, kuniyoshi, kunisada

I liked these “The Brave Deed of Breaking the Water Jars” series by Utagawa Kuniyoshi.japan, art, ukiyoe, kuniyoshi, kunisada

suikoden3

japan, art, ukiyoe, kuniyoshi, kunisada

There is no wonder people at that time got crazy about Ukiyo-e.

Cafe at Chorakukan

If you look for somewhere to take a break in Higashiyama-area in Kyoto, I recommend Choraku-kan.

It locates between Yasaka shrine and Maruyama Park.

Choraku-kan dates back in 1909, and it used to be a guest villa of a wealty businessman in Kyoto.

The elegant building is very conspicuous, so you can easily find it.

kyoto, cafe, chorakukan

approach

kyoto, cafe, chorakukan

Now Choraku-kan is known as  hotel and restaurant,  and its cafe is also a very nice place to visit.

kyoto, cafe, chorakukan

There are 8 different types of rooms.

Yes, it’s pricy, but worth visiting to enjoy piano sound and elegant atomosphere.

kyoto, cafe, chorakukan

kyoto, cafe, chorakukan

I had a peach dessert, and it was amazing!

kyoto, cafe, chorakukan

For more information: Choraku-kan

Jakuchu at Shokokuji Jotenkaku Museum

Shokoku-ji temple is the head temple of the Rinzai sect, and one of the most historic and authoritative Zen temples.

These days  Shokoku-ji became famous again, because it is the very temple Ito Jakuchu dedicated his “Sakyamuni Triad” and “Colorful Realm of Living Beings”. It is very meaningful to see Jakuchu’s works at Shokokuji Jotenkaku Museum, standing  inside Shokoku-ji.

Gate of the Museum.japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

Approach to the Museum.japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

Front garden of the Museum.japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

This time, “Sakyamuni Triad” and 30 pieces of “Colorful Realm of Living Beings” are on display.
Even though they are reproductions called “collotyped  full-scale photographs”, I could enjoy the full size hanging scrolls for the first time.

japan, art, ito jakuchu, sakyamuni triad

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

Roses and Birds (part)

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

Birds and Chrysanthemums by a Stream (part)

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

Birds and Plum Blossoms (part)

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

Soarrows and Millet (part)

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

At the same time, I could see the sliding door panels by Jakuchu for Rokuon-ji Temple (Kinkaku-ji Temple). 50 of them are all genuine, moved from the original temple.

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

Banana Plants and My

nah Bird

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

Pines and Crane

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

Bamboo

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

Rooster and Hen

japan, art, ito jakuchu, rooster

Shokoku-ji’s Hatto(Dharma Hall) is the oldest hatto in Japan.

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

Lotus flower in the pond.

japan, art, ito jakuchu, kyoto

Heian Jingu Shin’en Garden

You may have heard of Heian Jingu Shrine in Kyoto, and you may have the images of this big torii gate,

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

entrance gate,

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

and the red shrine itself.

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

However, where I recommend most is its garden surrounding the shrine.
It is called “Shin’en”-garden of God, and you can walk around enjoying the well-kept garden and flowers.

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

The garden was designed by the famous landscape architect 7 generation Ogawa Jihei.
As a garden that brings together the best of landscaping techniques of Heian-kyo thousand years,
it has been designated as a national scenic spot in 1975 December.

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

garden7

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

One of the most unforgettable viewpoint is this bridge.

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

Let’s take a rest for a while viewing the peaceful scenery.

japan, kyoto, garden, heian jingu

For more information: HEIAN JINGU