Waza to Kokoro Seminar in Japanese Garden Arts

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Waza to Kokoro Seminar in Japanese Garden Arts

This intensive, hands-on educational seminar is an immersive learning experience in Japanese garden arts, framed in the Culture of Tea and the art form of the tea garden. Come to Portland to learn stonesetting, plant care, design, history and other related subjects directly from Japanese garden masters.  The course is designed for landscape practitioners from all disciplines.

Portland Japanese Garden and offsites

Aug. 24-30, 2020 (application opens March 10, 2020)

Tuition, conditions, program content and other details at japanesegarden.org/thecenter or from  [email protected]

The Training Center is a recipient of the 2018 American Public Gardens Association award for program excellence.

About the Seminar:
Waza to Kokoro, the Center’s flagship program, is a series of three hands-on professional training seminars designed to serve professionals in garden design, construction, and maintenance. Traditional Japanese methods emphasizing observation and hands-on practice combine with lectures, design workshops, and other activities for an immersive learning experience in Japanese garden arts.

The seminar focuses on the traditional, hands-on learning process of stonework in the tea garden, supplementing it with theoretical instruction and hands-on practice in topics including garden design, pruning, bamboo fence construction, aesthetics, history, and traditional tool use – all framed eloquently in the culture of tea. Technical skills gain context through connected cultural practices to nurture a sense of aesthetics, balance, and composition.

Waza to Kokoro was designed to help Japanese gardens outside of Japan meet the need to find authentic, locally-appropriate solutions in design, construction, maintenance, and preservation. Admission is also open to professionals and students in all landscape-related sectors. The Center’s faculty are drawn from a mixed pool of hands-on practitioners, designers and academics. These include leading Japanese garden artisans descended from families who have gardened for centuries, as well as academics from top U.S. universities and practitioners of garden-related arts.

Admissions and Content:
The seminar is designed for professionals working in Japanese gardens, but admission is also open to landscape design and construction professionals as well as students of landscape-related disciplines. The seminar’s core focus is on stonework in the Japanese tea garden, taught by visiting Japanese instructors and Portland Japanese Garden staff.

A traditionally-grounded, hands-on learning process is supplemented with preparatory theoretical instruction, with content including:

  • History and aesthetics
  • Design
  • Garden clinic
  • Demonstration and practice with traditional Japanese tools and bamboo fence construction
  • Preparatory lectures for hands-on workshop
  • Hands-on workshop for designing, selecting materials for and building the nobedan and tsukubai stone elements of a tea garden
  • Master class in Japanese pruning techniques
  • Instruction in tea ceremony
  • Food culture discussions

Cover image submitted.

Event Detail

August 24, 2020 8:00 am
August 30, 2020 5:00 pm


Portland Japanese Garden
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