2023 97th Kokufu Bonsai Exhibition- Part 1

This year, Part 1 of the 97th Kokufu Bonsai Exhibition is being held on February 9-12, 2023 at the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum in Ueno Park, Tokyo, Japan.

Having missed the last two Kokufu Bonsai Exhibitions, I personally feel the beautiful bonsai on display this year was

Worth The Wait!

Got my old job back but the guard refused to let me hold the sign!

Data from Part 1:

140 Exhibit Areas

95 Large Bonsai

35 Chuhin (Medium) Compositions (70 pcs.)

8 Shohin Compositions (52 pcs.)

Total Displayed Bonsai, Approximately 189

3 Kokufu Prizes

13 Kicho (Important Bonsai Masterpieces)

2 Special Exhibits

Foreign Exhibitors:

2 U.S.A

4 Italy

2 Germany

1 Thailand

1 England

1 China

Kokufu Prize Japanese black pine

Kokufu prize Chojubai Award Japanese flowering quince

Kokufu Prize Korean hornbeam

The first Kokufu Bonsai Exhibition was held in March 1934 in the old Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum. This is the 89th year the exhibition has been held with the 97th exhibitions. Originally the exhibition was held twice a year for about ten years. It was suspended for three years because of World War II. 

A few things I noticed this year is a slight change in the lighting causing interfering shadows on the backgrounds making the trees difficult to photograph. But, it must be remembered that the exhibition has been set up to showcase the bonsai for apppreciation, not for photography.

All the Kicho important bonsai masterpieces did not have the silver colored plaque and special hanging label. Although all the Kicho important bonsai masterpieces were labeled with cardboard signs. Also, a great many of the bonsai were not centered on the display tables and some were not straight. Perhaps they were moved when watering? The aisles appeared to be wider, probably because of Covid restrictions. Everyone entering the museum had to wear a face mask and sanitized their hands.

More photos tomorrow as I continue my study and appreciation of this fine art.

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