It was originally established in 864 A.D. as the Tendai sect (天台宗) Buddhist temple, but it was restored twice – initially during the Genroku era, then followed by the restoration in 1776 A.D. by Buson (与謝蕪村). It has been converted to Rinzai sect / 臨済宗.
When the legendary poet, Matsuo Basho (松尾芭蕉), traveled to meet his friend in Kyoto, he stayed in the hut belong to this temple; therefore, the hut was later called Basho-An (芭蕉庵).
This image was taken around the time when William had started to seriously experiment with his large view camera (8x 20 inch negative), and he had to train his eyes to adjust to seeing the world in the new way through this vertical format camera. He had to capture and create the composition by seeing the world upside down. It gives you the diffrent inpression of Konpuku-ji.
The composition is very simple but invokes the feeling of calmness.