By Natasha Gan
Art is everlasting, daringly different and awe-inspiring. The same can be said for the collection of artworks in Tadao Ando’s Kyoto Garden of Fine Arts, and the edifice itself. The contemporary-designed museum, completed in 1994, still looks current even in 2015’s standard. In fact, Ando’s works have been characterized by being daringly different, always challenging the style of the given period in time. For this reason, Ando’s self-taught architecture artistry is awe-inspiring, as evident in the Garden of Fine Arts.
Though the name suggests a lush ‘garden’, the Kyoto Garden of Fine Arts is actually an al-fresco site made of concrete. It relishes in a design that is as simple as it is bold, typical of the Japanese architect. From the perpendicular structures shooting overhead to the diagonally slanted pathways, geometric patterns are seen throughout the 2,825-sqm compound. Visitors cruise through the museum to see copies of world-famous paintings like Michaelangelo’s Last Judgement, huge and mesmerizing; Monet’s Water Lily, aptly placed at the bottom of a pond; and Da Vinci’s iconic Last Supper… or perhaps they’re visiting to see the largest artwork there that is the timeless Garden of Fine Arts itself.