Why are the autumn colors of Kyoto described as the most beautiful in Japan? The delicate, almost translucent autumn tints of Kyoto, products of the city's particular plant life and climate, are undoubtedly lovely, but obviously that is not the only reason. The secret of Kyoto's autumn beauty lies in a perfect harmony between natural and manmade: product of centuries of history.
This book introduces 49 superlative Kyoto locations - predominantly temples and shrines - for viewing autumn tints, captured by three photographers. Turning the pages, readers will soon note that far from being consigned to history, the ancient places of worship within are assiduously maintained as centers for present-day religious devotions, coexisting seamlessly with their surroundings in a model of beauty nurtured over 1200 years in this, the cultural capital of Japan.
Viewing the autumn colors of Kyoto is not simply observing nature. It offers a glimpse into a small but sublime universe where people and nature unite in a harmonious whole, honed in perpetuity by history.
Photographs by Hidehiko Mizuno, Kayu Mizuno, and Yasutaka Ogawa.