Shinshoji Zen Museum and Gardens is a place for visitors to experience the spirit of Zen through a variety of activities, like tasting a bowl of tea, appreciating a piece of Zen calligraphy, eating a Zen meal that nurtures the body and soul, taking a bath to cleanse the mind and body, and strolling in the extensive gardens.
The vast campus is dotted with interesting architecture, including a hall built in the 17th century that was relocated from Shiga Prefecture, reproduced teahouses originally designed by tea master Sen no Rikyu, and the temple’s own office building, which was designed by renowned architect and architectural historian Terunobu Fujimori using pine, a local tree that symbolizes the Sanyodo and Setouchi regions. Linking these buildings are tasteful Zen gardens.
A must-see at the museum is one of Japan’s largest collections of Zen paintings and calligraphies by Zen master Hakuin. Sogondo, the permanent collection gallery, displays work by Hakuin, refreshing the exhibition several times a year. Along with the Zen art collection, an art pavilion was newly added on the campus. KOHTEI pavilion was designed by contemporary artist Kohei Nawa and the architecture team SANDWICH, a creative platform led by Nawa. Inside the ship-shaped building, which is completely covered with wood shingles, is a unique installation where visitors can experience subtly glittering lights on the waves. It is Nawa’s way of interpreting the teachings of Zen by expressing their essence through contemporary art.
Please enjoy the world of Zen, which is now fully accessible to the general public for the first time ever, through all five senses!
|Hours open||9:00-17:00 (Last entry at 16:00)|
Adults: 1,200 yen (1,000 yen for groups of 20 and more)
- Katsushige Kambara (Chair of Shinshoji board of directors)
- Committee members (alphabetical order)
- Terunobu Fujimori (Architectural historian, architect. Professor emeritus of the University of Tokyo and Director of Edo Tokyo Museum)
- Mari Hashimoto (Writer and editor. Deputy director of the Eisei Bunko Museum)
- Kohei Nawa (Sculptor)
- Katsuhiro Yoshizawa (Advisor to the International Research Institute for Zen Buddhism at Hanazono University)
- Executive director
- Toshiko Ferrier (Coordinator and producer. Representative of Office Ferrier)
- Design and supervision
- Kohei Nawa | SANDWICH (Yoshitaka Lee, Yuichi Kodai)
- Kohei Nawa | WOW
- Landscape Supervision
- Seijun Nishihata (Sora Botanical Garden)
- Graphic design (logos, signs and tools)
- Yuma Harada and Keisuke Yamazoe of UMA/design farm
- Editing (guide map and catalogue)
- Tomomi Tada, Dai Nagae (MUESUM)
- Takeshi Watamura (ovaqe inc.)
- Masako Taira (Taira Masako Press Office)
- Souvenir creations
- Hiroshi Kado (Kamisoe)
- SANDWICH Inc.
- Pierre Hermé Paris
- UMA/design farm