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A spatial analysis of the pond design to create Okufukasa, a sense of depth: a case study of Katsura Imperial Villa

Zhang, Yuan, Yamaguchi, Keita, Kawasaki, Masashi
Landscape research 2018 v.43 no.3 pp. 380-399
case studies, gardening, gardens, islands, landscaping, shorelines
This study examined the visual structures of five highly regarded views at Katsura Imperial Villa to clarify the pond spatial characteristics of Okufukasa (a sense of depth) in Japanese stroll gardens. Analysing the layout and visibility of both the water surface and the islands in the pond view, we found that Okufukasa is created through a combination of features, such as the visual depth and width of the water surface with the vista and perspective, overlapping island layers, and the concealment of shorelines and their scenic end points. Two types of outlines were used to determine how layout affects Okufukasa. Directional outlines, distributed along the sides of the visual path, contribute to vista and perspective by mimicking the orientation of the furthest visible water surface. Meanwhile, stratificational outlines, distributed along the centre islands and convex sections of the surrounding islands, create overlap in the scenic layers. Clarifying this area of tacit knowledge in traditional Japanese gardening can contribute to the application of Okufukasa in contemporary landscape design.