North American Japanese Garden Association To Host Philadelphia & New York Heritage Tour & Workshop

Two-Day Event Focus On Modernist and Traditional Japanese Design In the Garden

Philadelphia, PA – On October 7 and 8, the North American Japanese Garden Association (NAJGA) is teaming up with the Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia (JASGP) to explore the adaptation and preservation of Modernist and traditional Japanese design in several garden settings found in New York and Philadelphia. NAJGA is a non-profit that promotes the art, craft and heart of Japanese gardens in USA and Canada.

The coach heritage tour on October 7 will feature prime examples of Japanese and Mid-century modern architecture in two garden estates: Kykuit at the Rockefeller estate in Tarrytown, New York with its century-old Japanese garden, and the Manitoga / The Russell Wright Design Center in Garrison, New York with its Japanese-influenced woodland garden. Also included with the tour registration is a box lunch and free admission to the Shofuso Japanese House and Garden in Philadelphia, which will be the assembly point for the tour.

“Autumn is one of the best times to be in a Japanese garden and as the leaves turn and fall away, we are better able to isolate and appreciate the architectural aspects of the garden, particularly the buildings that exist in its context,” says NAJGA board president and JASGP executive director Kim Andrews.

The work of revered Japanese architect Junzo Yoshimura will be a prime focus of this event. Aside from being the acclaimed designer of Shofuso, he also built a traditional teahouse for the Japanese garden in Kykuit. The tour will include a lecture about Yoshimura’s works as well as a viewing of the exterior of the Marcel Breuer House in Kykuit.

On October 8, Yoshimura’s legacy at Shofuso will be further scrutinized through the lenses of an ongoing heritage preservation project in a workshop that includes a Japanese carpentry demonstration, practicum on historic preservation reporting, and hinoki roof demonstration. Shofuso’s heritage preservation project aims to uphold Yoshimura’s rigorous standards for designing Shofuso using traditional Japanese design, and one of its most major components is the restoration of the roof made from the bark of the hinoki cypress. Heritage preservation experts and craftsmen skilled in traditional Japanese techniques will serve as lecturers and facilitators during the workshop.

“Our ongoing effort to meet the preservation challenges presented by Yoshimura’s uncompromising standards is also an excellent learning opportunity for everyone else interested in heritage conservation and the modern adaptation of traditional Japanese design,” says Andrews. “Knowing about how to properly report on conditions for heritage structures, for example, is a must for community custodians of these structures inside and outside the garden setting.”

The two-day event will be occurring during one of the busiest weeks in the Philadelphia design scene as it is also part of the 2016 DesignPhiladelphia festival (October 6 to 16), the oldest open-source event of its kind in the United States, and of the Docomomo US Tour Day 2016 (October 8), an annual event for raising awareness of and appreciation of buildings, interiors and landscapes designed in the US during the mid-20th century.

This event is open to the general public. To learn more and to register, visit http://najga.org/Philadelphia-2016.

North American Japanese Garden Association To Host Philadelphia & New York Heritage Tour & Workshop

Symposium & Tour Will Feature Historic Japanese Gardens In New York

On October 1 and 2, the North American Japanese Garden Association (NAJGA) is coming to the New York area to celebrate the history and the sustainable future of its Japanese gardens in the symposium and tour entitled “Fostering Mature Cultural Landscapes: The Japanese Gardens In New York.” NAJGA is a non-profit organization that promotes the art, craft and heart of Japanese gardens in the United States and Canada.

2009 june 19 stream and pond r    BBG

The Japanese garden at Kykuit and the Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden at Brooklyn Botanic Garden are both a hundred years old. 

Two New York gardens are a hundred years old, and all of them are at the forefront of the movement to preserve the legacy of Japanese Gardens in North America by fostering their relevance for our society. The October 1 garden history symposium will be held at The Pocantico Center, Tarrytown, NY. It features four speakers who care for and manage these gardens.

  • Stephen Morrell, Director, John P. Humes Japanese Stroll Garden
  • Brian Funk, Curator, Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden
  • Cynthia Altman, Curator, art collections and gardens at Kykuit, the Rockefeller estate.
  • Kate Kerin, Landscape Curator, Innisfree Garden as well as garden historian
  • Kendall Brown, Professor of Asian Art History, California State University Long Beach and NAJGA’s Board President

The talks will be followed by an afternoon guided tour of the Japanese garden and the sculpture garden built by the Rockefeller family at Kykuit in Tarrytown, NY.

The coach garden tour on October 2 will take participants from the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s Japanese-Hill-and-Pond Garden, to the United Nations Peace Bell Garden in NYC, to the Hammond Museum and Japanese Stroll Garden in North Salem, NY, and then to the Innisfree Garden in Millbrook, NY.

The Brooklyn Botanic Garden tour includes a visit of the special exhibition of work by the famed Japanese-American sculptor and garden-designer Isamu Noguchi. The exhibition celebrates the garden’s centenary.

The visit to the UN Peace Bell Garden, which is not normally open to the public, is an exclusive opportunity for tour participants. The historic UN Peace Bell, donated by the United Nations Association of Japan more than 60 years ago, was just recently reinstated to this newly renovated garden designed by Shin Abe of ZEN Associates. Japan’s Ambassador to the United Nations Motohide Yoshikawa will personally lead the tour. Mr. Yoshikawa was instrumental to the creation of the garden 15 years ago.

Hammond Garden            

photo-25      350px-Japanese_Peace_Bell_of_United_Nations

The Hammond Museum & Japanese Stroll Garden, John P. Humes Japanese Stroll Garden, Innisfree Garden and the UN Peace Bell Garden

“The rich history of Japanese gardens in New York may come as a surprise to many. New York City and surrounding areas have in fact produced more Japanese gardens than almost any part of North America,” says Dr. Brown, who is also the author of the popular book “Quiet Beauty: The Japanese Gardens of North America.”

He adds: “NAJGA seeks to examine the legacy of history gardens. It also provides practical wisdom for working garden professionals, scholars, and back-yard enthusiasts who create, maintain, study, and enjoy Japanese gardens as compelling spaces in our modern world.”

The two-day event is open to the public. Participation fee: 2-day attendance – $190 for NAJGA members, $250 for general public. 1-day attendance (October 1 OR October 2 only) – $95 for NAJGA members, $125 for general public. For more details and to register, go to: www.najga.org.

Symposium & Tour Will Feature Historic Japanese Gardens In New York

“Centennial Gardens”: Excerpts from the 2014-2015 NAJGA Journal

Japanese gardens outside of Japan number more than 450, of which approximately 300 are in North America. Of that substantial number, fewer than 20 have reached the centennial mark. In this issue, six gardens across the continental United States and out into the Pacific were asked to share their centennial stories.

Book Review – “One Hundred Years in the Huntington’s Japanese Garden: Harmony With Nature” Book reviewer – Dr. Jill Raggett, NTF; Edited by: June T. Li; Contributors – Kendall H. Brown, James Folsom, Naomi Hirahara, Robert Hori, Kelly Sutherlin McLeod

Huntington Japanese Garden Book“Every historic garden should have a book like this, a publication that brings together the physical and archival evidence about a designed landscape in a readable and engaging form. This book uncovers the stories of the origins, creators and on-going appreciation and use of the Huntington’s Japanese Garden following a year-long closure during which a $6.8 million renovation was undertaken… The garden reopened in April 2012 to mark its centennial as a beloved and iconic landscape in Pasadena, California.”

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Maymont: A Victorian Estate’s Japanese Garden, 1912                                                   Carla Murray

Maymont-Japanese-garden

Maymont, a 100-acre estate in Richmond Virginia, celebrated the centennial anniversary of its Japanese garden in 2012 with a year-long series of programs and events…Japanese gardens were among the favorite showplaces for Gilded Age showplaces such as Maymont, so it is no surprise that James and Sallie Dooley employed Japanese garden makers to plant such a landscape in the wedge-shaped section of land, adjacent to the Kanawha Canal, which they purchased in 1911.”

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Brooklyn Botanic Garden: Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden, 1915                               
Brian Funk

BBGJapaneseHillPondGarden“In 2015, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden commemorates the centennial anniversary of the Japanese Hill and Pond Garden. The garden, initiated with a gift from philanthropist Alfred T. White (1846-1921), opened to the public on June 6, 1915. Serving as a landmark for the borough of Brooklyn and containing a rather dramatic history, this garden is among the earliest public Japanese gardens in the United States. It is a beloved garden for urbanites trying to escape the clamor of the city. It also is popular as a home to many koi, turtles, ducks, and occasionally, herons.”

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San Diego, California: The Japanese Friendship GardenJapanese_Friendship_Garden_Path_koi_pond_1
Marisa Takeuchi

“The Japanese Friendship Garden in San Diego, California got its start in a different location at Balboa Park as a tea house for the 1915 Panama California Exposition. Starting several years ago, the garden embarked on a major expansion to increase its size to more than eleven acres by clearing the ravine behind the present garden. Since then, a waterfall and stream have been installed. ‘Pink Cloud’ and other cherry trees planted in a new grove bloom annually for a festival begun nine years ago….”

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Hakone Estate and Gardens in Saratoga, CA Celebrate Centennial in 2015                  
Lon Saavedra

Hakone_Gardens,_Saratoga,_CA_-_IMG_9196“In 1915, San Francisco philanthropists Oliver (1877-1918) and Isabel Stine (1880-1959) purchased land to establish a mountainside retreat for their family, international dignitaries, and friends of the art…The following year, Mrs. Stine sailed to Japan, where she visited various historic gardens…Upon her return to America, Mrs. Stine began work on a Japanese-style country estate and gardens in Saratoga on an eighteen-acre hillside…Hakone is one of the historic crown jewels of the Silicon Valley with a rich history of cultural events and celebrations throughout the past century.”

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Lili’uokalani Garden in Hilo: A Century-Old Tapestry Woven of Many Threads liliuokalanigarden             By K.T. Cannon-Eger

Lili’uokalani Gardens in Hilo, Hawai’i resulted from the collaboration of several women: the Queen after her rule was overthrown, an immigrant Japanese women’s society, and a Caucasian whose travels to Japan left her deeply smitten with Japanese gardens… Preparations are being made for the dual centennials in 2017 of the passing of Queen Lili’uokalani and her namesake garden…Hilo is so fortunate to have a living work of art adjacent to the ocean and with a view of the majestic Mauna Kea.”

The 2014-2015 NAJGA Journal is free to members of the North American Japanese Garden Association. To order additional copies or to order as a non-member, click HERE.

“Centennial Gardens”: Excerpts from the 2014-2015 NAJGA Journal