The Tiny Bonsai Forests of Masahiko Kimura

Masahiko Kimura is a Japanese bonsai artist famous for pioneering the ‘bonsai forest’ trend, in which several bonsai trees are planted on interlocking wood or stone slates, forming tiny, whimsical forests.

Kimura started out in the world of bonsai art at the age of 15, as an apprentice to bonsai master Motosuke Hamano, at Toju-en Bonsai Garden in Saitama, Japan. After 11 years, a young Masahiko Kimura decides to pursue bonsai art on his own, and ends up creating some of the most controversial bonsai artworks ever. It’s hard to refer to bonsai art as ‘controversial’, but Kimura’s style did ruffle a few feathers among purists of the art at first, as many of them considered that he was breaking too many of the craft’s ancient traditions.

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