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This large-format volume illustrates the finest bonsai in Japan, including some priceless specimens as old as 1000 years, and each with a detailed caption.
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The NIPPON BONSAI ASSOCIATION is the single largest public bonsai organization in Japan. Initially begun as the Kokufu Bonsai Kai in 1934, the association has become increasingly active in bonsai circles over the years. As an artistic and cultural ambassador, the association has sought to develop a high standard and to foster a broader awareness of the art of bonsai. Toward this end the association sponsors the annual Kokufu Bonsai-ten (the largest bonsai exhibition in Japan), publishes such periodicals as Bonsai Shunju, and conducts lectures and seminars on bonsai technique in Japan and abroad.
Currently, the association has more than 300 chapters nationwide with approximately 20,000 members and some 300 members in 30 countries throughout the world.
John Yoshio Naka is one of the foremost authorities on bonsai in the West and author of Bonsai Techniques. Hideo Aragaki is an awardwinning columnist. His collected essays for the magazine Bonsai Shunju appeared in book form under the title of Shizen to Jinsei (Nature and Life) in 1987. Hideo Marushima, a practicing lawyer, writes extensively on bonsai and suiseki for various Japanese publications. His Nihon Bonsai Bonseki Shiko (An Interpretative History of Bonsai and Suiseki) was published in 1982.
With the exception of ten years lecturing at the University of Tokyo, John Bester, a graduate of the School of Oriental and African Studies of London University, has devoted most of his time in Japan to translation. In particular, the many literary and other translations that he has undertaken for Kodansha International have established him in the front rank of the field.From Publishers Weekly:
"It is not only the length of its lifespan that distinguishes the immobile tree from birds that fly, fish that swim, and men and beasts that walk over the earth; it is also the only living thing that creates, within itself, annual rings spelling out the history of its life." Bonsai, dwarf trees, contain "a record of our ancestors' trials and tribulations" in "less space than a man can encompass with his arms." This (ironically) oversize book includes 200 full-color and black-and-white photographs of Japanese specimens ranging in age from a mere five to 1000 years, and from the cheerful winter jasmine, bedecked with yellow blooms, to wizened junipers with twisted limbs. Bonsai specialists Naka, Aragaki and Marushima detail history, cultivation and stylistic nuances. Presented in an oddly luxe fashion for such an understated art, the trees--bathed in startlingly unambiguous light--appear larger than life, but more legible for that. A Garden Book Club selection.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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