The History Of Japanese Architecture Essay Research

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The History Of Japanese Architecture Essay, Research Paper The Architecture of Japan A society is defined by its culture, and there are many components of culture. Japanese culture includes unique traditions, music, food, art, and religion. Another major aspect of Japanese culture that is the most visible is the architecture. Japanese architecture has evolved from traditional simplicity to ultra-modern ugliness. The architecture of Japan has reflected the political, social, and religious situations in some situations. Three periods can be used as examples of this: the Heian Period, the Tokugawa Period, and the Modern Period. The changes that Japanese architecture goes through during these three phases is interesting, and it says a lot about the society that created it. The

Heian Period is divided into two main parts: the Konin era, from 780 AD to 897 AD, and the Fujiwara era, from 898 AD to 1192 AD. Buddhism played a major part in the architectural design of the Konin era. Japanese Buddhists adopted the Indian idea of the stupa as a worship place, but modified it. The Indian stupas were domed, while the Japanese ones of the Konin era had pyramidal roofs. However, a new kind of pagoda developed that combined the styles developed during that time. The pyramidal roof was present, but a domed roof was superimposed upon it. On top of that was another roof, with a spire and pillars. The Indian Buddhist roots are there, but the Japanese already had begun to make their impact on Buddhist architecture. Eventually, the Japanese would form new Buddhist

architecture styles, just as they would form new Buddhist sects. In 794, Emperor Kammu moved the Japanese capital from Nagako to Uda , mostly because the emperor did not like the atmosphere of the monasteries at the old capital, Nara. It was after this move that Shinto places of worship began to undergo changes. They began to adopt many characteristics usually associated with Buddhism, including intricately designed gates, elaborate carvings, and pagodas. This combination of religions was brought about by the belief that Shinto gods were incarnations of Buddha. Many groups of Buddhist temples were built during the Konin era, but Nobunaga burned almost all to the ground during the 16th century. However, one survived. Koya San survived and is a good example of these large groups.

Although its main pagoda was burned down, fifty temples still stand. These contain apartments and chapels for the religious pilgrims that frequented the site. These apartment complexes utilize quadrangles, which are used in modern American architecture. All the buildings are covered with thick, heavy tiles that are colored to blend with the trees that surround the area. More architectural advances were made during the Fujiwara era. One new idea was the Shinden style of residential buildings that were constructed around the Imperial Palace. The main chamber faced south, and on each side were covered hallways that led to smaller buildings. Two more corridors stemmed off of the auxiliary buildings, enclosing the residence and forming a courtyard that was used as a garden. The

buildings of the noblemen during the Fujiwara era did were not overly fancy or luxurious. They consisted of one building, without pavilions or auxiliary buildings. They were open to the fresh air, and the inside was furnished with simple mats. These buildings, although built in the tenth century, were not much different from modern day Japanese houses. The lowest class Japanese lived in simple thatched huts. The Tokugawa era ran from 1616 to 1860, and was a period of peace. It was also a period of isolation for the Japanese people. No one was allowed to enter or leave the country, and trade was heavily restricted. As a result, the Japanese were given the chance to develop a truly unique style of architecture. The capital during this period was Edo, the centerpiece of which was a