Tokyobling's Blog

Taishakuten Lotus Sutra Wood Carvings

Posted in Places by tokyobling on September 7, 2015

Maybe the most outstanding feature of the famous Taishakuten are the wood carvings covering the sides and the back of the main temple buildings. There are hundreds of meters of carvings in total, all from huge corbels of dragon heads to tiny patterns in tiny brackets. Most famous of all the carvings though are the ten giant keyaki-wood boards featuring scenes from the Lotus Sutra. The first of these boards were carved in 1922 by a master wood carver, and the idea was to send out nine more boards to other master wood carvers around Tokyo. In 1923 the Great Kanto Earthquake struck Japan and the nice boards sent out were all destroyed. Board of this size of this kind of wood are extremely valuable and very hard to find, so it was not until 1926 enough boards had been found to have the work restarted and the last board was delivered in 1934.

To see these carvings you need to enter a special glassed in gallery section, divided into two floors and the entrance fee is 400 yen, which also gives you entrance to the attached temple gardens. It is really a must see, the skill of these old wood carvers is simply unbelievable!

Naturally photographing wood carvings attractively is not an easy task, and I was in a hurry to see them all before closing. Next time I visit I will try to do a better job of it!









One Response

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. nocturnaltwins said, on September 8, 2015 at 12:41 pm

    Oh yeah… I love the intricate details, I could spend hours looking at these carvings.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: