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“Bonsai” – An Aspect of Japanese Cultural Value



– Nature in a tray –

”Bonsai” is a dwarfed ornamental tree or shrub grown in a tray or a shallow pot. 

It is positioned as one of Japanese work of art.

“Bosai” is definitely one representative aspect of Japanese Cultural Values.

Unlike painting or sculpture which is static, “Bonsai” allows you to feel changes which nature creates or heartbeat of life through the four seasons.

In addition, “Bonsai” is highly appreciated abroad. 

In fact, there is a specialized magazine of “Bonsai” which has hundreds of thousands of circulation in the United States, Spain and France.

Surprisingly, there is a museum and a university of bonsai in Italy!!! 

We don’t have any Bonsai University in Japan.

Chinese “Bonkei” of the Tang Dynasty (618 – 907) is said to be an origin of “Bonsai”. 

“Bonkei” was introduced from China to Japan and the history of “Bonsai” began in Muromachi period (1338 – 1573).

“Bonkei” was popular as a lofty hobby among the samurai and aristocrats, and it was begun to be called as “Bonsai” in Edo period (1603 – 1867).

Then, ”Bonsai” has evolved as one of Japanese Cultural Values.

There are some masterpieces of “Bonsai” which are 100 – 300 years old.

Why don’t you try to foster “Bonsai” to create your own Nature in a tray!!!


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