Penguin Environmental Design

Penguin Environmental Design

Penguin Environmental Design

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Japanese Architecture in Winter

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Accoording to Yoshida Kenko’s famous Essays in Idleness (: Tsurezuregusa), “On buidling a house, it should be designed to suit the summer. In winter, one can live anywhere.” Really?

Now I live in Connecticut, I am a little hesitant to agree with him, especially “living anywhere in winter” part. We had some snow last night, even though it has been a warm winter.

To Kenko’s credit, humidity during summer in Japan is trying, and one just cannot live in a house without proper cross ventilation. You yearn for breeze, so that you can breath. Hence Japanese architecture does not really have walls; it just has series of openings that can be closed.

But these very open Japanese houses are hard to endure in the winter. Try visiting a temple in Kyoto in January. I am sure you will have to walk tip toe in the building, because the floor is so cold ! (Remember that you are not allowed to keep your shoes on.)

Yet there is also a reward for it. A winter scenery could be beautiful, although it is not a sweet pretiness of the spring or a lively loveliness of the summer. With shoji screens open, the winter may offer a serene and graceful landscape  for you to see. If you are lucky to have a view like this picture at Kosan-ji Temple, then sit down with a cup of green tea on a zabuton cushion. You may become meditated enough to believe that you could “live anywhere in winter.” (Y)

Blog

Japanese Architecture in Winter

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Accoording to Yoshida Kenko’s famous Essays in Idleness (: Tsurezuregusa), “On buidling a house, it should be designed to suit the summer. In winter, one can live anywhere.” Really?

Now I live in Connecticut, I am a little hesitant to agree with him, especially “living anywhere in winter” part. We had some snow last night, even though it has been a warm winter.

To Kenko’s credit, humidity during summer in Japan is trying, and one just cannot live in a house without proper cross ventilation. You yearn for breeze, so that you can breath. Hence Japanese architecture does not really have walls; it just has series of openings that can be closed.

But these very open Japanese houses are hard to endure in the winter. Try visiting a temple in Kyoto in January. I am sure you will have to walk tip toe in the building, because the floor is so cold ! (Remember that you are not allowed to keep your shoes on.)

Yet there is also a reward for it. A winter scenery could be beautiful, although it is not a sweet pretiness of the spring or a lively loveliness of the summer. With shoji screens open, the winter may offer a serene and graceful landscape  for you to see. If you are lucky to have a view like this picture at Kosan-ji Temple, then sit down with a cup of green tea on a zabuton cushion. You may become meditated enough to believe that you could “live anywhere in winter.” (Y)

Japanese + Modern

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