Kyoto, Japan

詩仙堂 (京都府京都市左京区一乗寺門口町)

This temple was built by Ishikawa Jozan (石川丈山), a samurai who had served Tokugawa Shogunate, as his hermitage. Its name comes from the fact that there is a room where the portraits of 36 legendary poets of China painted by Kano Tanyu (狩野探幽) are displayed. Although the composition here is not symmetrical, it gives the sense of balance because there is a strong focal point. While there is a strong contrast between the red and green in the garden, the whiteness of Susuki grass (Miscanthus sinensis) in front of the red leaves neutralizes the contrast and draws the viewers’ attention. The color red and white – kōhaku (紅白) are used in the celebration in Japan, and one can experience these colors in Autumn.