Building a case for birds

| Jul 20, 2013

Building a case for birds

Many people would consider Stonehenge in southwest England or the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt — which both date from around 4,600 years ago — among the crowning glories of human achievement. In Japan, Kyoto’s 14th-century Rokuon-ji (Temple of the Golden Pavilion) or ...

Cycads: 'living fossils' with a deadly twist

| Jun 16, 2013

Cycads: 'living fossils' with a deadly twist

Almost two months after revelers in most of Japan began partying beneath cherry blossoms in mid-March this year, we hardy northerners in Hokkaido were still waiting patiently for warm zephyrs to waft in with a late promise of spring. When I returned home on ...

Kan Yasuda's tactile art brings new life to Bibai

May 26, 2013

Kan Yasuda's tactile art brings new life to Bibai

Kan Yasuda's art somehow draws in the landscape, and entices in people, so that it is natural to explore the view through his structures and keyholes, to sit awhile atop a sculpture or to pose within their frames.

Dancing Demoiselles of the desert

| Feb 17, 2013

Dancing Demoiselles of the desert

In a dry, dusty, desert landscape, the clamoring of cranes seems so surprising. I am used to the great winter assembly of more than 10,000 cranes in Kyushu at Izumi, where they congregate on winter-fallow rice fields; and I regularly frequent the winter gatherings ...

Impossible forests where tides ebb and flow

| Jan 19, 2013

Impossible forests where tides ebb and flow

A ripple flows gently inland across an expanse of dark-gray mud. It washes in, then drains back, dampening the surface; it briefly fills, then empties from, tiny holes made by innumerable small crabs. The ebb is over, and the flow tide has begun. The ...