Title: Two Bridges in Katsura Villa
Photographer: Andrew J. Bordwin
Date: July 15, 2019
This photograph shows a view of two bridges crossing a stream in the Katsura Villa. The bridges are held up by wooden beams and have no handrails, only having moss as their sides. A corner of roof and a small tōrō (traditional stone lantern) can be seen to the right of the image. The green of the mossy bridge matches almost perfectly with its natural surroundings. This, along with the use of natural materials (wood, moss, etc.) in the construction of the bridges shows the emphasis on blending this villa’s architecture in with the nature around it. With the support beams on the bridge being of the same materials of the tree trunks on the shores and the moss on the bridge matching the grass, the bridges seem almost an extension of the land. The blending of the manmade and the natural reflects the Shinto values of holiness in nature. As the emperor was the Shinto leader of Japan at the time, it would have been important for his home to reflect Shinto values.
Image by Andrew J. Bordwin
Access granted by photographer