Mirei Shigemori - Rebel in the Garden: Modern Japanese Landscape Architecture
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Mirei Shigemori decisively shaped the development of Japanese landscape architecture in the twentieth century. He founded the Kyoto Garden Society in 1932 and published the 26-volume Illustrated Book on the History of the Japanese Garden in 1938. One year later he designed his own first masterwork, the garden of the main hall of Tôfuku-ji Temple. Between then and his death in 1975, he went on to design 240 gardens throughout Japan. Among the most famous are the Tenrai-an tea garden (1969) and the Matsuo Taisha garden (1975). All of his gardens are distinguished by the fact that they honor tradition while at the same time – through their openness to Western modernity – they free themselves from its weight and develop a language of their own. The first part of the book will deal with Shigemori’s life and influences, including his interest in ikebana and tea ceremonies. The second part will offer detailed presentations of some seventeen different gardens.