Exploring the Gardens of Kyoto with Charles Mann

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Exploring the Gardens of Kyoto with Charles Mann
Featured Events Past Events Special Events

EXPLORING THE GARDENS OF KYOTO with photographer Charles Mann

Join CIR members and guests for a delightful exploration of Japanese gardens portrayed through a stunning slide show and discussion by photographer, Charles Mann. The event will be introduced and moderated by Casey Janes, President of the Santa Fe Japan Intercultural Network.

Location: Hotel Santa Fe, 1501 Paseo de Peralta

Cost: $45 per person – includes buffet luncheon prepared by Amaya Restaurant of Hotel Santa Fe.
$15 for slideshow presentation only (not including lunch buffet)


Kyoto is the epicenter of Japanese culture, where the essence of garden style remains intact today just as it was hundreds of years ago.  The abstract beauty of the Japanese garden stands alone as an art form in and of itself, and makes Kyoto not only a photographer’s paradise, but an experience which offers valuable lessons for any western thinking garden enthusiast.

The Gardens of Kyoto takes viewers on a visual journey to experience a redefinition of beauty, style and expression which has much to say about the new directions that American garden design is destined to take in the future.  The program includes Mann’s personal anecdotes from experiences about visiting the city, the best  seasons to travel, visual essays of some well known gardens, and, in particular, commentary about the insights and  inspirations that these experiences have for the Western gardener.  Some thoughts will be shared about the basic goal of  gardening, definitions of beauty that inform east and west, and the  elements that  compose the Japanese garden.

Charles Mann is a photographer who is interested in gardening as a universal theme of community and personal expression and comes neither as an expert in Japanese culture nor in gardening, but merely as a curious Everyman. He has been a high school chemistry teacher, a Peace Corps volunteer and worked as nursery manager for  Plants of the Southwest in Santa Fe.  During college in Arkansas, he was a skydiver, a scuba diver, a spelunker, earned his pilot’s license and toured the country on his BMW motorcycle. He came to Santa Fe in 1980 to attend the graduate program at St. John’s College and never left.

A self-confessed dilettante, Charles became a freelance photographer in 1990 and has not had a real job since. He has traveled to Rome, Majorca, Ireland, New Zealand, Mexico City, Kyoto, Alaska and most of the western states seeking  interesting gardens and landscapes. Charles’ pictures have been seen in many books and calendars, and in magazines such as Sunset, Phoenix Home & Garden, Su Casa, the Santa Fean, Ventanas, Horticulture, Garten Praxis, and Country Living Gardener. Charles also writes articles for magazines and presents slide shows about  photography and gardening. He has led tours of Santa Fe gardens for the Smithsonian, Horticulture, Lotus Land, and the Chicago Botanic Garden. He has photographed four books, including  Secret Gardens of Santa Fe, Viva Guadalupe, Celebrating Guadalupe, and Cutting Edge Gardening in the Intermountain West with Denver garden expert Marcia Tatroe.

In addition to his articles on gardens, Charles also wrote and photographed articles about motorcycle touring, the Manhattan Project, the Gallup Intertribal Ceremonial and Permaculture for New Mexico Magazine. He has traveled to Thailand, Greece and Italy, returned to Europe for a fourth motorcycle trip, and is shooting landscape photographs in the southwest. His photos and articles can be seen at www.charlesmannphotography.com

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