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Tokyo wonder site & Korakuen garden

Today was the first time in many years that my husband asked me if he could join Sunday service at a Russian orthodox church that I go to. I guess with all the things happening now everyone feels the need to pray and ask for guidance if not God then some greater power out there. So we went and the service was as usual wonderful. There weren’t many Russians though. Most of the girls who go there have children so I reckon they all went back to Russia for the sake of their children and relatives who worry sick. My friend Jenya is still in Moscow.

On the way back, instead of taking a train right away, we decided to walk for a few stations and visit a small art space in Ochanomizu and then Korakuen garden in Suidobashi.

This is a very pretty Sakura banister that I spotted on the walking bridge between those two stations.

And this is Magnolia – one of my favorite Spring flowers. It is rather difficult though to find a moment when all the flowers are open at the same time. Depending on the position towards sun, some of the flowers can already be falling while others are yet to open.. Near my house, there are three Magnolia trees – one is in full blossom, two others are still naked…

Tokyo wonder site is a non profit project sponsored by Institute of Contemporary Art and International cultural exchange. It has three locations – Hongo (the one that I visited), Shibuya and Aoyama. Shibuya’s art space is also a gallery where you can purchase some of the work.

The exhibit was displaying works of new artists from suburbia. Most of the pieces were installations. There was a projection of a small girl on the wall singing a beautiful French song in complete darkness and also this gigantic cushion/bench made out of real growing grass. These were the two pieces that I liked the most. ^-^ Oh and behind me on this picture is a chart showing the evolution of media starting from the invention of photography and finishing with twitter. ^-^

After the gallery, we went to Koishikawa Korakuen garden – one of Tokugawa family’s famous creations. In the past, these¬†intricately made gardens were the nowadays theme parks, often symbolizing other parts of the country with it’s artificial hills representing mountains, streams representing rivers and small pavilions representing pagodas and shrines. This Korakuen garden was a “theme park” dedicated to Kyoto and it’s famous Kiyomizu-dera temple.

The early Sakura is the best – all the beauty and none the people. ^-^

Although there was a group of bird watchers with their gun-like cameras but they weren’t interested in the blossoms at all so no harm there. ^-^

They weren’t watching the ducks though, otherwise they would have caught a really nice scene. These two duckies were buddies at first, then they started to quarrel and then it turned into a full blown fight with flying feathers.

Later on, one of the duckies went chasing an old man who had bread in his hand. Never underestimate hungry ducks – they are violent! ^-^

Then, there was this very old house – one of the oldest original constructions in the garden. It’s sole purpose back in the day was to store two statues of some wise men that Tokugawa Yorifusa respected deeply. A closet right in the middle of garden…

On my way back to the station, I took a picture of a typical Tokyo bench. If you haven’t noticed yet, all public benches in Tokyo (the ones that are available even at night) have something in the middle. I was said that these separators on the benches were created to prevent homeless people from camping there overnight. I think it’s terrible and I don’t understand the reason for such cruelty.. Let the poor guys sleep on benches. What’s wrong with that?

And I am really fond of this last picture – I just love the contrast between dried leaves and the concrete. ^-^

7 Comments Post a comment
  1. Oh! I never knew about benches with smth in the middle..last photo is really intersting – you edited colors?

    March 30, 2011
    • And it’s true about the benches. Whenever you see one without a separator, it means the place where it is located is closed for the night.

      March 31, 2011
  2. no I didn’t! But there is a preset on my camera with “dramatic” effect so it gives a lot of accent to the shadows..

    March 31, 2011
  3. wow, great blog!

    April 3, 2011
    • Thanks! ^-^

      April 3, 2011
      • will be following it, make sure you follow mine too! haha, thanks!

        April 3, 2011
  4. Super nice story. Neeat and many beautiful pictures. I like . Thnx to you for this wonderful feelngs that you are shering :)

    April 10, 2011

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