Japan is a country well known for its spring, Japan called Nippon / Nihon in Japanese, which means that the origin of the Sun. Japanese culture starts from 28,000 years ago, which brought a lot of wisdom in life, and has influenced how to eat, live and dwelt for many people in the world.
The most important and fundamental feature of Japanese architecture is based on the appropriate use of various types of wood, which creates different desires of study and assessment of the construction techniques and artistic expression.
The term Japanese architecture refers generally to those traditional wooden structures covering several centuries, as opposed to European architecture represented by those buildings which represent the major growth phase in Japan, including those that arose in the early Meiji Era until this day.
We classify these buildings as:
– Shinto Shrines
– Buddhist Temples
– Old Dwellings
– Tea Rooms
As said earlier, constructions in Japanese, the most used material in Japanese architecture is wood. This is in a distinct contrast compared to European architecture, which uses stone and brick as the main material since ancient times of Greece and Rome. Today, the buildings of stone and brick, the main structure must necessarily be based upon binding or system of arches. In the constructions of wood, as in Japanese architecture, unlike the European construction, column is the mainstay, and spaces of the walls are not as important as the structural members. The walls are only used as partitions.
The materials used in Japanese buildings are mostly natural woods. Japan has the amount of forest that can be compared with the world’s richest. In ancient temples, their lands were filled almost entirely forested. However, today they have decreased considerably, but most of it is still covered by beautiful forests.
Japan has rich forests due to its climate. The autumn rains are abundant and climate; and the soil conditions are well accepted by vegetation. Several species of wood are excellent quality, such as Kinoki, Sawara, Tsuga, Sugi, Matsu, and Keyaki. Thus it is easy to see why the wood was widely used in buildings in Japan since ancient times.
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