Academia & Science

Talk: Portland Japanese Garden: An American Interpretation of a Japanese Artform

28 January 2019

6:00pm – 7:00pm

Daiwa Foundation Japan House, 13 - 14 Cornwall Terrace, London NW1 4QP. Nearest tube: Baker Street

020 7486 4348

Photo by James Florio

The Japanese Portland Garden is a traditional Japanese garden in Portland, Oregon. The Garden, which was designed in 1963, covers 12 acres and has eight separate garden styles. The Garden was created to provide the residents of Portland with a beautiful, serene garden, while also creating a connection between America and Japan after World War II.

In this talk, Steve Bloom will explore the past, present, and future of the Portland Japanese Garden. He will look at how it is leading a global dialog about the Japanese Garden as a platform for spreading the ideals of peace and mutual understanding between peoples by sharing some of Japan’s greatest gifts with the world: its culture, art, and unique connection to nature.

This event is free but booking is essential.

About the contributors

Steve Bloom
Steve Bloom is the Chief Executive Officer of the Portland Japanese Garden. Steve has overseen many changes at the Garden, including the completion of a $37 million expansion. In 2015, Steve was awarded the Foreign Minister’s Commendations by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs in recognition of his outstanding achievements in the promotion of friendship between Japan and the United States. In 2008-9, Steve was a Council on Foreign Relations International Affairs Fellow in Japan and a Visiting Scholar at Tokyo University of Agriculture. Following his fellowship, Steve led the efforts to establish the North American Japanese Garden Association and served as its Founding Board President. Steve received the “2017 Portland Award” recognizing greatest overall contribution to the promotion of Portland’s visitor industry. In 2018 the Garden Society of Japan bestowed Honorary Membership to Bloom in recognition of outstanding achievements in the promotion of Japanese Gardens worldwide.

Nick Luscombe
Nick Luscombe (Chair) is a London based radio broadcaster and producer, DJ and music consultant. He presents BBC Radio 3’s Sony Award Winning Late Junction programme. He is founder and creative director of Musicity, an international location-based curated digital music and live event platform and app, that has so far launched in London, Beijing, Oslo, Tokyo, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Singapore. Nick is a frequent visitor to Japan and has made several radio documentaries about the country including features about Junichiro Tanizaki’s In Praise of Shadows, new farming science in Shizuoka, Japan’s music industry, as well as numerous field recording sound podcasts. Nick is also co-founder of Japan Sound Portrait podcast and live music/event agency.