|Doukutsu Kannon (33 kinds of statue of Goddess of Mercy
After making his fortune as a dry goods seller in Tamachi, Takasaki, the late Tokuzo Yamada decided to construct a sacred grounds that people could come together to enjoy, a paradise that would serve as a reminder of the nature of the world. Construction began in 1919, and Yamada continued to invest his own private fortune in it for 50 years, until he passed away in 1964. The sacred underground temple was completed without the help of modern machinery, using pickaxes, shovels, and sheer manpower to dig out the mountain, fill in the valley, excavate the pond, and haul the stones. Rakuzan Takahashi of Niigata circled the cave's 400m expanse, blessing it with the same divine favor as enshrined in the The Bando 33 Temples. The cave naturally maintains a year-round temperature of 17, making it a popular place to visit to stay cool during the hot midsummer, when temperatures exceed 30.
Tokumei-en was built simultaneously alongside Doukutsu Kannon, and is considered one of the finest Japanese gardens in northern Kanto. The garden is known for its unique rising and falling landscape, but it was built on what was originally an even slope. Earth dug out in the construction of the cave was used to create the garden's undulating quality. All trees, aside from those in the center of the garden, were planted by hand, and all of the giant stones were transported from outside of Gunma Prefecture. The red stones among them are very rarely seen in our time.
At first, the garden was built for Tokuzo Yamada's personal enjoyment, and was not open to the public. It is fitting, therefore, that the most beautiful view of the garden may be from the veranda of the central residence. The garden's beauty can be admired in every season. When spring begins, it is full of azaleas, mountain cherries, and brilliant fresh verdure. In summer come the hydrangeas, and its glorious autumn leaves are renowned.
|spring winter air-raid shelter autum|
|Yamatoku Memorial Hall@(Manga- Museum)
This is the residence where founder, Tokuzo Yamada, spent his final years. The home is designed with a balanced blend of the Western, Taisho romantic style, and the style of a typical Japanese home. The interior is adorned with Kutani-ware tile from Ishikawa Prefecture, and stained glass, which was very rare in Japan at the time. It still has ceiling boards and pillars of the finest quality Akita cedar, its plentiful use being at the cutting-edge of design at the time.
Because Tokuzo possessed a great number of works by his friend, the modern manga satirist, Rakuten Kitazawa, the Western section of the residence was remodeled with a satirical manga concept, and made into Japan's first ever manga museum. The Japanese section of the home is currently used for cultural facilities, including an aikido dojo and tea room
|Mai-event in Autum||Light up event|