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Quiet Beauty: The Japanese Gardens of North Americaby Kendall H. Brown and David M. Cobb
Synopses & Reviews
Quiet Beauty: Japanese Gardens of North America is an extraordinary look at the most beautiful and serene gardens of the United States and Canada. Most Japanese garden books look to the gardens of Japan. Quiet Beauty explores the treasure trove of Japanese gardens located in North America. Featuring an intimate look at twenty-six gardens, with numerous stunning color photographs of each, that detail their style, history, and special functions, this book explores the ingenuity and range of Japanese landscaping.
Japanese gardens have been part of North American culture for almost 150 years. Quiet Beauty is a thought provoking look at the history of their introduction to the world of North American gardening and how they have since taken root and flourished.
"The gently flowing streams, crushed-rock paths, and koi-filled ponds of Japanese gardens invite tranquil meditation beauty, nature, and order. Yet, the 150-year history of Japanese gardens in American culture raises complicated questions about authenticity, design, style, and meaning. In this lavishly illustrated book, art historian Brown and photographer Cobb act as tour guides to 26 such gardens — including the Japanese Tea Garden in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park, Francisco Nitobe Memorial Garden in Vancouver, B.C., and ShÃ…Âmu'en (Pine Mist Garden) at Cheekwood in Nashville, Tenn. — that are accessible, historically significant, and compelling physical spaces. The first Japanese-style gardens were built between the 1890s and 1920s, often at fairs and expositions in an effort to satisfy the curiosity of Westerners obsessed with Japan; these early tea gardens were often built by the 'first generation of Japanese immigrants anxious to leave the forms of their ancestors in the land of their descendants.' After WWII, friendship gardens multiplied, designed by distinguished Japanese landscape artists as a way of building ties and promoting business with former enemies. By the 1960 and 1970s, homeowners began building Japanese-style gardens in their backyards, as authentic as their budgets would allow; today's Japanese gardens focus on the power of such places to 'calm, inspire, and even heal.' 180 color photos." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"With an introduction titled "Places to Dream," Kendall H. Brown extols the serenity of Japanese gardens, lauding their soothing environments in a world of "the cacophony of cities (and) the anonymity of suburbs."...The gardens, [Brown] says, can nurture, educate and stimulate creativity, and Quiet Beauty can do the same." The Oregonian
About the Author
David M. Cobb is a member of NANPA (North American Nature Photography Association), PPA (Professional Photographers of America), and GWA (Garden Writers Association). He lives in the Pacific Northwest with his wife and their two cats.
Kendall H. Brown is Professor of Asian Art History in the Art Department at California State University Long Beach. He also recently served as Curator of Collections, Exhibitions and Programs at Pacific Asia Museum. Dr. Brown is a leading figure in the study of Japanese gardens in North America and is the author of Japanese-style Gardens of the Pacific West Coast.
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