2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

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2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  William N. Valavanis on Wed Feb 06, 2013 2:11 pm

The 2013 87th Kokufu Bonsai Exhibition opened yesterday at the newly remodeled Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum which was closed for two years. During the closure several new elevators and escalators were installed along with many massive textured concrete walls. The arrangement is similar but smaller than in the past Years. There are now three Gallery Rooms. The new lighting was terrible with pink bulbs mixed with others. We saw someone with a remote control moving and adjusting spot lights which were over 30 feet off the ground, kind of neat, only wish the lights were actually on the trees so they could be appreciated. It was extremely difficult to photograph in the dark areas.

Normally just over 250 bonsai were annually displayed. This year there were 204 displays including only 6 shohin compositions. Also there were 70 Kicho Bonsai (Important Bonsai Masterpieces) displayed which mean they are automatically accepted, so actually there were fewer new trees on display but of higher quality.

This year the judges awarded 6 Kokufu Prizes: Chinese Quince, Tokyo Nishiki Japanese Flowering Quince, Japanese five-needle pine, Japanese five-needle pine, White Japanese Rose and Japanese black Pine.

There were two foreign American exhibitors: Doug Paul from Pennsylvania with a Sargents juniper and Matt Ouwinga from Chicago with his root over rock Trient maple.

The crowds were light yesterday and today (Wednesday) the crowds were even smaller because of snow and rain. The Ueno Green Club sales area was also hurting for customers.
These are only my first impressions going through the show three times, but I still have two days to complete my study.

Enjoy the photos!
Bill


New Gallery A Room


New Gallery B Room


New Gallery C Room


New Gallery C Room, shohin bonsai area.


Chinese quince Kokufu Prize


Japanese five-needle pine Kokufu Prize


Japanese black pine Kokufu Prize


Toyo Nishiki Japanese flowering quince Kokufu Prize


White Japanese rose Kokufu Prize


Japanese five-needle pine Kokufu Prize


Sargent juniper displayed by Doug Paul, Pennsylvania, USA


Trident maple displayed by Matt Ouwinga, Chicago, IL, USA

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  Tona on Wed Feb 06, 2013 3:06 pm

Thank you Bill for the post. Beautiful!!!
Tona

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  Mark Cooper on Wed Feb 06, 2013 3:22 pm

Thanks Bill for taking the time and effort to post your photos. Mark & Ritta

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  newzealandteatree on Wed Feb 06, 2013 3:45 pm

Bill, thanks for sharing.

Cheers,

CJ

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  JimLewis on Wed Feb 06, 2013 3:54 pm

Don't know what we'd do without you, Bill! Thanks.

I especially like the first quince and the rose -- and that pot!!!!!!!

The first two pines were High quality and impressive, but -- keeping in mind that I am NOT a pine person -- also pretty standard "pine-ish" Japanese trees, at least to MY mind. (Interpret that as you will <g>.)

I think Matt's trident was very impressive, too. He is/used to be an IBCer.

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  khat_lp on Wed Feb 06, 2013 5:00 pm

Thanks for sharing!

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  Alan Walker on Wed Feb 06, 2013 5:34 pm

Thanks for the professional quality photos of Kokufu-ten, Bill!
Especially for sharing the American entries. cheers

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  fredtruck on Wed Feb 06, 2013 7:00 pm

Very fine pictures.

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  mambo on Wed Feb 06, 2013 7:13 pm

Hi Bill,

Great photos and thanks for taking the trouble to post. How do foreign trees get to show at Kokufu? As I understood it the import of plants into japan was pretty complicated and trees were taken out of the pot, soil removed and disinfected????

Have things changed?

Thanks

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  marcus watts on Wed Feb 06, 2013 10:02 pm

mambo wrote:Hi Bill,

Great photos and thanks for taking the trouble to post. How do foreign trees get to show at Kokufu? As I understood it the import of plants into japan was pretty complicated and trees were taken out of the pot, soil removed and disinfected????

Have things changed?

Thanks

i believe these trees are purchased in japan by the foreign owners, then the trees stay at japanese nurseries 365 days a year basically for ever, (unles the owner decides to bring them out eventually) and the chosen nursery looks after them for a 'board and lodging' fee and enters them in the show(s). How much actual work the owners do on their own trees I dont know - maybe they visit now and then but it is unlikely they do the watering ! Razz. to be fair in japan lots of trees are treated this way and they have to be actually entered into the top shows by the proffessional keepers, not the actual owners. Really these shows show the skill of the proffessional artists and are a great podium for their skills - the owners of the tree are very much secondary in a great many cases as they depend totally on the chosen proffesional bonsai nurseryman to get the tree ready and into the show.

i am sort of tempted to buy a nice tree from Ryan and make holiday visits to Oregon to fiddle with it until it is show worthy - that would be a similar scenario.............. Laughing

cheers Marcus

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  Robert J. Baran on Wed Feb 06, 2013 10:24 pm

For the benefit of newer members to this forum, please see this comprehensive guide to the Kokufu Ten shows which Bill and I have put together over the past several years, http://www.phoenixbonsai.com/Days/Kokufuten.html .

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  Guest on Wed Feb 06, 2013 11:37 pm

Seeing theese superp bonsai, exhibited like this....can I hardly wait to end my last day in Lovely Kyoto, and go for the treat in Tokyo.
Thanks for posting the photos.

Kind regards Yvonne

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  William N. Valavanis on Wed Feb 06, 2013 11:49 pm

NO, the foreign bonsai are kept in Japan for the exhibition, then after quarantine they are exported to the United States.

Bill

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Thanks!

Post  dorothy7774 on Thu Feb 07, 2013 3:06 am

Thank you for the great photographs, Bill! ( I love the rose!)

Robert J. Baran wrote:For the benefit of newer members to this forum, please see this comprehensive guide to the Kokufu Ten shows which Bill and I have put together over the past several years, http://www.phoenixbonsai.com/Days/Kokufuten.html .

And thank you Bill and Robert for this awesome (!) Kokufu Ten guide. This is an absolute must read for newer or older IBC members! The very detailed information shared and the historical photographs presented are priceless.

Thanks for a great treat!

-Dorothy

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  lackhand on Thu Feb 07, 2013 3:16 am

Robert J. Baran wrote:For the benefit of newer members to this forum, please see this comprehensive guide to the Kokufu Ten shows which Bill and I have put together over the past several years, http://www.phoenixbonsai.com/Days/Kokufuten.html .

That is a great guide, well worth the read. And coming from my backyard (Phoenix) too! My schedule should clear up in a month or two so I can start coming to some meetings. Looking forward to that.

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  Todd Ellis on Thu Feb 07, 2013 1:03 pm

Bill's post and Robert's link to the Kokufu Ten guide are great. I am wondering about the pots/containers that our American Kokufu Ten owners displayed their trees in. Were they included in the sale of these trees? Or, were they rented, as Bill has talked about in other posts?

I'm with Dorothy - love the Rose too! I would love to see it with foliage and blossoms.

Todd

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  Ryan B on Thu Feb 07, 2013 5:05 pm

Todd,
I don't know about Doug's Tree, but I do know that Matt does own the pot his maple was shown in. The option to rent was there, but, I believe because he intends to import the tree after quarantine and the USDA regulations are met, he bought it instead. If memory serves, it was a Suiban some time ago, how fitting for a Root over Rock!
There's a little more info about the tree and the young professional who prepared it for show here:
http://japanesebonsaipots.net/2013/01/22/american-owner-to-show-at-kokufu-ten-2013/
Ryan
http://japanesebonsaipots.net/

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  William Feldman on Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:06 pm

I took this photo at the Ueno Green Club during Kokufu 2004. Do you think it's the same tree?



William N. Valavanis wrote:
Japanese five-needle pine Kokufu Prize

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  Todd Ellis on Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:55 pm

Good question.... scratch I would love to hear other's thoughts about this. I would say that it is not, but I would like to know....

Thanks for the info and link for Mr. Fujiwara - it was fun trying to translate the text Very Happy

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  Ryan B on Thu Feb 07, 2013 11:22 pm

Yeah, thats a fun site. I found some killer blogs when I happened upon his site long ago, on his links page.
I believe he's currently at Aichi-en, you'll see him pop up pretty regularly on Peter Teas blog.
Ryan
http://japanesebonsaipots.net/

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  William N. Valavanis on Thu Feb 07, 2013 11:34 pm

The pine from 2004 is NOT the same award winning tree which is a three trunk specimen, not single trunk.

But it would not be that unusual for award winning trees to be found in the sales are. Many trees for sale have labels that they were displayed in past shows, sometimes accompanied with the commemorative album opened to the page where the tree was featured.


Bill

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  William N. Valavanis on Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:20 am

The pine from the 2004 Green Club looked kind of familiar..... so I just went back to the exhibition and photographed a pine which just might be the tree from the 2004 Green Club. I also took another shot of the award winning pine showing the lower trunk.

Enjoy!


Perhaps the tree from the 2004 Green Club?



Close up of Award Winning tree

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  John Quinn on Fri Feb 08, 2013 3:53 am

Bill, I know that, in the past, you have been awarded special access and permission to photograph trees at the exhibition. You seem to have even more access and opportunity this year. Has anything changed in their policy or have they just learned not to argue with you? Cool

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  William N. Valavanis on Fri Feb 08, 2013 6:18 am

No, respect....

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

Post  Gary Swiech on Sat Feb 09, 2013 7:36 pm

Bill, thanks for all the images.

Congratulations Matt !

Where did Matt's tree originally came from, what was it origins?

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Re: 2013 87th KOKUFU BONSAI EXHIBITION

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