Author(s): Judith Clancy
"Kyoto Gardens" is a labor of love from master photographer Ben Simmons and Kyoto-based writer Judith Clancy. Simmons' photographs present a fresh and contemporary look at Kyoto's most important gardens. Their beauty is enhanced and humanized by gardeners tending the grounds using the tools of their art. Clancy's graceful text provides historic, aesthetic and cultural context to the gardens. Combining wonder and rigor, she describes how Kyoto's most beloved gardens remain faithful to their founders' creative spirit and conception. Journey to Kyoto's thirty gardens with just a turn of a page, or use the handy maps to plan your trip.
Judith Clancy has lived in Kyoto for more than 40 years, writing and teaching about Japanese culture. Her first publication, "Naturescapes," was a tribute to her Ikebana teacher, Tamura Suiko, who, through the art of flower arrangement, instilled a deep and subtle appreciation of Japanese aesthetics and character. "Exploring Kyoto: On Foot in the Ancient Capital" went beyond the usual guidebook. Its 30 detailed walks through Kyoto reveal temples, shrines and folklore to visitors while taking them on a journey through centuries of Japan's traditional architecture and culture. "Kyoto Machiya Restaurant Guide" relays the culinary delights within Kyoto's renovated townhouses, and in "Kyoto: City of Zen," Clancy and Simmons introduce viewers to Japan's ancient capital. Clancy lives in a 120-year-old converted weaving studio in Nishijin, the weaving and dyeing district of Kyoto. Visit her website at kyotoworkshops.com. Ben Simmons is a longtime Japan resident whose photos have appeared in books, magazines, and exhibitions worldwide, including the Victoria and Albert Museum and the United Nations. He holds an MFA from the University of Florida. Some of his other book projects are "Tokyo Megacity" and "Traditional Japanese Architecture: An Exploration of Elements and Forms," both published by Tuttle.