Toksho-Ji, Portrait of a Kyoto Temple

Toksho-Ji is a Buddhist temple in Japan. It is located on a side street off a busy avenue in central Kyoto.

I experienced Toksho-Ji as a book-labyrinth, each room, passageway and garden being simultaneously an image from a future dream and a deja vue.



Hallway, ground floor.

Formal dining room, ground floor.

Tea room, with scroll and flower arrangement, ground floor.

Open screens and large flower arrangement in the ceremony room.

Hallway, second floor.

Study room, second floor.

Hans Bellmer, M.W. Svanberg and Toyen books on a shelf next to a bust of the playwright Moliere.

Hallway, second floor.

Library Room with a Kenneth Noland monograph.

Entrance to the Kura (Safe) room with its triple layered doors.

Tea House Designed by Architect Terenobu Fujimori, West garden, View from 2nd Floor.

In the west garden, the architect Terunobu Fujimori created two sculptures made of earth and grass on supporting wire frame structures. The arc sculpture is an homage to the Russian constructivist art of the early XXth century and the second sculpture, floating off the ground, is an homage to the undulating shapes in Salvador Dali's paintings.

Passageway to East garden.

Stone Walkway from East garden to South garden, the circle stone was originally used to grind rice.

Cat in south garden.

Eave of temple roof and tree in East garden.

Tree and eave of the front gate

Tree and 2 windows from the 'Western room'

Detail of two pages from a recently uncovered Tokusho-Ji bookkeeping ledger, the Ancient Japanese writing dates over 200 years ago. A few columns have been covered over with additional attached paper stripes of writing as if to amend the original entry.


Close-up detail of Ancient Japanese handwriting from recently uncovered bookkeeping ledgers.

The paper and ink are over 200 years.

Ceramics and flower arrangement in the ceremony room

Shyoko and Hitoshi, her husband the monk of Toksho-Ji, at home in the West garden.