[Conference presentation] Presented a paper at the international symposium ‘Gardens: History, Reception, Scientific Analyses’
CTR researcher, Prof. Kenkichi Ono (Faculty of Tourism at Wakayama University) presented his research at an international symposium ‘Gardens: History, Reception, Scientific Analyses’ held in Nagoya, Japan between 23rd and 24th February, 2019. This two day academic event brought diverse expertise around the world to develop the study of historic gardens which requires an interdisciplinary approach.
Excavation and Restoration of Japanese Gardens built in the 8th Century
Nearly 400 garden sites have been archaeologically excavated in Japan. More than 20 gardens of the Nara period, which approximately correspond to the 8th century, have been unearthed. The Eastern palace garden and the garden at Block 6 of East Second Ward on Third Street are exceptional examples which were fully excavated and found to be very well-remained. They were preserved and restored after the investigations.
The Eastern palace garden was located in the south-eastern corner of Nara palace precinct. It was first built in the early 8th century, and renovated in the 760s. The garden ground was 100 meters north-south by 70 meters east-west, and its pond measured 60 meters north-south, 50-60 meters east-west. After the renovation, the pond was curved with a series of peninsulas and inlets, with an island in the southern part and a conspicuous stone arrangement on the north shore. Restoration of the garden including buildings was conducted in the 1990s, and it has been opened to the public.
The Block 6 garden was located at the central district of the Nara capital, near the Nara palace. It was built in the mid-8th century and deserted in the early 9th century. The garden pond was 55 meters long, varying between 2-7 meters wide. The bottom was covered with flat stones, and the shore was lined with upright cobbles. Ornamental stones were skillfully arranged at several points mainly along the shore of the pond. To the west of the pond, the remains of building foundations were uncovered. This garden including a building was restored in the 1980s, and it has been opened to the public since then. In the course of restoration, the idea was adopted that the pond with stone arrangements was not covered. However, deterioration and weathering of stone features has proceeded and is now under re-restoration work.
◆Symposium website https://arthist.net/archive/19522