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Join us for a special study in nature and intentionality at our introductory Bonsai Workshop. Elements of bonsai design and styling, as well as pruning and potting techniques, will be demonstrated and discussed. This class consists of a 1-hour lecture followed by 1-hour of hands-on time.
Pacific Bonsai Museum began in 1989 when then Weyerhaeuser Company president George Weyerhaeuser donated his collection of extraordinary bonsai to create an outdoor museum adjacent to the Weyerhaeuser Company headquarters in south King County. The exhibit space was designed by Hoshide Wanzer Architects. It became an independent nonprofit organization in 2013. Pacific Bonsai Museum is an anti-racist organization, according to its website.
PBM curator Aarin Packard had conceived of this exhibition for 15 years as he collected stories and biographical information. Japanese American crafts were pursued and documented during incarceration camp life, such as painting, calligraphy, wood carving, ikebana, and bonsai, often created with available materials found in the far-flung desert locations of the camps. Packard knew the Japanese American bonsai history was important to share as it has been missing from the institutional record and probably had never been told in a formal museum setting in the U.S. or Japan.
Packard, museum curator for the past six years, grew up in Southern California and worked on bonsai for many years. He has been to Japan to study, in particular for a three-week appointment at a key bonsai teaching garden in Tokyo. He gained knowledge of the Japanese American community over many years and developed the exhibition and text, along with having it reviewed by community experts.
Local Pacific Northwest horticulture experts probably will recognize bonsai by Kelly Nishitani, of Oriental Gardens in North Seattle, as well as those from Kenny Hikogawa and his brother-in-law Joe Asahara, who created Oriental Garden Center in Federal Way, and plants by Taki Nagasawa of Green River Nursery in Kent.
Although Shigaki claims no special knowledge of bonsai, she credited her mentor in graphic design, the late Larry Gojio, with introducing her to the Pacific Bonsai Museum years ago, as he was an avid practitioner of the art.
I stopped by on Sat. and John said that 35 years in retail was more than enough. He plans to continue his growing beds and stay involved in the bonsai community. That and do some travelling once the COVID restrictions are relaxed.
Nestled amidst towering conifers, Pacific Bonsai Museum connects people to nature through the living art of bonsai. One of only two museums in the United States solely dedicated to bonsai, and one of only a handful of bonsai museums worldwide, Pacific Bonsai Museum maintains a collection of 150 bonsai that are among the finest examples of bonsai anywhere in the world. The collection is also the most geographically diverse bonsai collection in the United States, with trees from Canada, China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, and the United States.
A grand outdoor setting with the elegance of a fine art museum, Pacific Bonsai Museum features sixty trees on exhibit at a given time, open to the public six days a week in Federal Way, Washington. This cultural gem offers contemporary and traditional bonsai exhibitions, group tours, education program, field trips, and public events. www.pacificbonsaimuseum.org
Spaces of Liminality: Enter the LAB is the exclusive first performance of the LAB (Living Art of Bonsai). We will witness the creation of a living sculpture and watch as three renowned artists resequence traditional bonsai practices under the influence of a work of an iconic American architect, Frank Lloyd Wright. The action is participatory; guests can engage in the dialogue and interject questions in a moderated discussion as the art emerges. The event program includes a presentation about Frank Lloyd Wright and the influence of Japanese culture on his work. This event will be filmed, with footage to be used for a documentary film of the LAB project. You can watch the trailer to this upcoming documentary on our homepage.
Rather than starting with a styled tree and asking both the pot and the standmaker to respond to it (as is traditionally practiced), the LAB asks: what if the stand comes first?; or the pot?; where can these makers take the art of bonsai if they allow themselves to influenced by each other in an entirely new way?
The LAB is a multi-year project, kicking off in 2018 and continuing through 2020, consisting of collaborative working sessions and presentation sessions in notable architectural settings. All members of the design team will be present for each gathering to answer audience questions and discuss their work philosophies and design decisions in detail. These sessions will produce three, one-of-a-kind works of living art, with bonsai styling taking place before a live audience. 781b155fdc