Image Title: Shugakuin Imperial Villa, at Kyoto Japan
Image Size: 3,556 × 2,012 pixels, file size: 4 MB
Location: Kyoto, Japan
Date: 29 August 2008
DVC: Situated in the hills of the eastern suburbs of Kyoto, Japan, Shugakuin Villa is the site of one of Japan’s most intricate set of gardens and tea houses. The image above depicts the extent to which the buildings of the villa actually are noticeable. This villa was designed by Emperor Go-Mizunoo as a retirement property and is depicted in this image as the stark opposite of the traditional castle that emperors live in during their reign. In the image, there is a tea house on the right side which can barely be seen as it is covered by trees which instills the sentiment that Shugakuin Villa is the epitome of being one with nature and letting nature into ones life rather than separating nature from home. The tea house seen in the image is also designed with neutral colors so as to not take away from the attention intended to be for the nature surrounding the building. There is the main body of water seen in the image which is the centerpiece of the upper garden (the most important of the gardens) of the villa. Rather than surrounding the estate with water as is seen in castles, the Shugakuin Villa prides itself in having water, the symbol of life, as the center of the villa and having all buildings surround it. Finally, the element of wabi-sabi is also prevalent here as nothing in the image is intended to be symmetrical and each part of the gardens are naturally present and providing the elements of effortless, native beauty.
Wiiii, CC BY-SA 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0>, via Wikimedia Commons