“Water Garden” Opens at Art Biotop Nasu, a Waterside Space Connecting Art and Nature for Relaxation and Well-Being
Located at the foot of the Nasu mountains, Art Biotop Nasu is a space surrounded by trees and clear water and dedicated to art and creativity. Visitors can stay in the forest residence, try their hand at glasswork and pottery, and even enjoy activities like cycling and horse riding.
On July 3, 2018, Art Biotop Nasu added a new feature to its grounds: A botanical garden designed by the architect Junya Ishigami, known simply as the “Water Garden.”
The “Water Garden” is an artistic environment combining the forest and the water, composed of hundreds of trees and countless biotopes. Each individual tree in the neighboring copses was surveyed for species and condition and then repositioned into the new “Water Garden,” while the water is drawn from a watercourse originally used to irrigate a rice paddy. The result is a work of both art and architecture recreating the full potential of the area—originally a wild forest that was later developed for rice farming.
Architect Junya Ishigami is increasingly recognized both inside and outside Japan for his work, even receiving the Golden Lion Prize at La Biennale de Venezia. He recently made a stir in Paris with his exhibition “Freeing Architecture,” which opened at the Fondation Cartier pour l'Art Contemporain on March 30, 2018, and featured the “Water Garden” among a range of other works. In fact, the exhibition was so popular that the Fondation Cartier decided to extend it until September 9.
The most beautiful time of day in the “Water Garden” is early morning. Visitors staying in the residence can enjoy a guided morning tour, if they make their reservation the night before. There is nothing quite like breathing in the purity of the morning to the sound of laughing streams and birdsong from around the “Water Garden.” Even visitors not staying in the residence, of course, are free to enjoy a tour as part of a package also including lunch and tea, as well as participating in the glass handicraft activities and visiting the cafe and gallery.
Nasu has a new art spot for cooling off this summer. Be sure to visit!
◆ “Water Garden” at Art Biotop Nasu
Address: 2294-3 Michiue Takakuotsu, Nasu-machi, Nasu-gun, Tochigi
Telephone: +81 (0)287-788-7833
Pricing: Standard plan, overnight: 15,700 JPY. Multiple nights: 15,000 JPY per night.
Note: All prices include breakfast and exclude consumption tax. High-season fees apply.
● “The Art of Walking” (guided morning tour): Starts 7:30 a.m. (ca 40 min). Free for overnight guests, 1,000 JPY for visitors (excluding tax)
● Water Garden tour (ca 40 min) + tea at Gallery Cafe: 2,000 JPY (excluding tax). Weekdays: From 1:30 p.m. Weekends and holidays: From 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
● Lunch the Gallery Cafe + Water Garden tour (ca 40 min): 4,000 JPY (excluding tax). Weekdays: From 1:30 p.m. Weekends and holidays: From 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
Note: All activities require reservation (must be made by 5:00 p.m. the previous day)