Now at the Birmingham Museum of Art

version of this photograph was installed today in the Japan Gallery of the Birmingham (Alabama) Museum of Art, as part of the BMA’s “Meditation Station” (2nd Floor, Japan Gallery).   This was shot at a favorite spot of mine in Kyoto, Kurodani Temple, in the Okazaki district.  It’s my first “Museum Piece,” so I’m happy with that –

Kurodani-dera. Kyoto. 2005.


The Birmingham Museum of Art.

    • writechic
    • May 13th, 2010

    Congratulations! 🙂

    • letsjapan
    • May 13th, 2010

    Thank you, Melissa. Now make sure to go by and see it. Second Floor, in the Japan Gallery. It’s sort of the focus for the “Meditation Station.” You’ll know what I mean when you see it.


    • David Case
    • May 13th, 2010

    Hi Rick–Excellent news, and I hope you have a whole series at the BMC. (It has to be better than the “Creek Village” display when I was last in town.) Seriously, congratulations.


    • letsjapan
    • May 13th, 2010

    Thanks, Dave. It’s a little difficult to explain, but the photo has been enlarged (30+” x 30+” ?) and is backdrop/feature for a “Station” in the Japan Gallery that invites visitors to “Sense,” “See,” “Contemplate” and “Reflect” on art throughout the Museum. There are these rather large, laminated cards with the same photo incorporated into them that provide suggested explanations for those terms and the public is encouraged to take the cards with them around the Museum (but requested to return them before leaving). So it makes sort of a logo or “brand” for this whole thing. I’m flattered that one of my photos would be chosen for such a thing. I also think it’s a worth while effort by the BMA to ask the occasional (or even first-time) visitor to think about these things, just as a student in an Art History class would be asked to think critically, and emotionally, and in a discerning way, about art during the course of an entire semester . . . or college career.

    • Lois
    • May 14th, 2010

    Nicely done.

    • Dick Echols
    • May 14th, 2010

    Nice work, Richard! I can see why that photo would be chosen. Congratulations!

  1. Just discovered you & your blog & I really like what I see!
    This is the first I’ve heard of the meditation station, so I plan to check it out soon. I hope your recent travels have been great.

      • letsjapan
      • May 31st, 2010

      Dear Glenny,

      Thank you so much. Just back (a few hours ago) from Japan. Technically speaking, I woke up in Kyoto this morning along the wonderful Kamo River (but Monday morning here was Monday night there and Monday morning there was last night here . . . it all gets a little confusing).

      I intend to do several updates, new posts, this week so please stay tuned.

      Thanks again to you. Please feel invited to navigate all around this site and, of course, please visit the Bhm Museum of Art.


    • Nick patterson
    • January 18th, 2011

    Nice! Thanks for the notice. Because the benches in the meditation station are portable, you can meditate in front of any work of art anywhere at BMA!

      • letsjapan
      • January 18th, 2011

      That’s right, Nick! Thanks for noting that. Please pass this on as you see fit. And if you follow that link about Kurodani Temple, where the photo was taken, you can get a lot of context for the photo. That’s something I wish I could do: be there, on hand, to tell all that go by how special that place is to me. Also, friends whom I’ve taken there really seem to enjoy my explaining that the Buddha image in the foreground is on a hill, thus the reason that he’s “eye level” with the roofs of several of the buildings in the temple complex below.

  1. June 5th, 2010

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