Asuka Historical Museum Photo contest

Nabunken Gallery (41)

Asuka Historical Museum Photo contest

 The Asuka Historical Museum has held the "Asuka Historical Museum Photo contest" twice a year since 2012. This spring marked the third time that the contest was held. Contest entries increase each time, and attracting greater attention, including a favorable reception from visitors.

 This photo contest invites works related to the history of the Asuka-Fujiwara areas, and awards prize winners with the "Asuka Historical Museum - Ancient Official Rank Prize". As appropriate for the Asuka Historical Museum, this photo contest is particular about the concept "Only in the ancient capital". In other words, this contest is not a conventional contest attracting beautiful landscape photos. The work most appropriate to the contest theme "Photographic expression evoking eternal history" is awarded with "the Sho-ichii (lit. senior first rank) Prize". In addition, "the Ju-ichii (junior first rank) Prize" is determined from among competition entries by the votes of visitors to the museum.

 The wonderful works awarded the Sho-ichii prize in past contests are shown below. From the comments of each prize-winning photographer, I hope you will feel empathy for their sentiments to the ancient capital.

(NARITA Satoshi, Asuka Historical Museum)



The 2nd Photo Contest
Aug. 4 – Sept. 17, 2012
Flowery Capital Far Away
The Sho-ichii Grand Minister Prize
“Land of History - Afterglow”
by FUJIE Hiroshi


The prize winner comments on his work

Winning the Sho-ichii Grand Minister Prize gave me much greater pleasure than I ever expected. I took this picture thinking, “The Fujiwara Capital, the first capital of Japan, lies underground here. After the capital relocated in 710 to Nara, this land has been empty for these 1,300 years. Even so, even now, the setting sun is gilding this earth, leading viewers and dreamers to the historical stage far away. In my personal opinion, the view most appropriate for the Nara or “Yamato” area must, after all, be historical landscapes including those related to the “Kojiki (lit. Records of ancient matters)”, “Nihon-shoki (lit. Chronicles of Japan)”, and “Manyo-shu (lit. Collection of Ten Thousand Leaves, poetry collection)”.




The 1st Photo Contest
Feb. 11 – Mar. 4, 2012

A View of Unknown Asuka

The Sho-ichii Grand Minister Prize
by MIYATA Tetsuji

The prize winner comments on his work:

Hosokawa hamlet, where rice terraces full of water lie one above another, is located at the highest point above sea level within Asuka village. When the glaring sun sets over Mt. Nijo, seen beyond Hosokawa hamlet, all of the rice terraces are bathed in a ruby red light. This view is what is called the “standard photo” of Hosokawa hamlet. I have frequently visited the hamlet myself to encounter this view. However, as the “Asuka Historical Museum Photo Contest invited works according to the theme “A View of Unknown Asuka”, I entered into the contest this work which departs from the usual “appearance of Hosokawa hamlet” . The work successfully captured the moment at which beams of light came through the gaps in the clouds, and poured onto the rice terraces of Hosokawa hamlet as “crepuscular rays”. At that time, I felt as if the “agricultural gods” had emerged, in order to promise a good harvest this year.



The 3rd Photo Contest
Mar. 9 – Apr. 14, 2013

Mountains of Gods

Views of the Three Mountains of Yamato

The Sho-ichii Grand Minister Prize
“Japanese Cornel Blossom Time”

The prize winner comments on his work:

It is wonderful surprise for me to receive the honorable Sho-ichii Grand Minister Prize. As the theme of this contest was “Mountains of Gods”, I chose my favorite, Mt. Unebi, viewed from Asuka Village. It rained from early morning on the day I shot this picture, and I almost gave up photographing the evening scene. However, fortunately, the rain stopped just before sunset, and the evening sun appeared between the gaps in the clouds. After the rain let up, the roads and fields were dazzling. It was a really wonderful scene. Above all, a Japanese cornel tree, the focus of this work, was especially brilliant. So far as I remember, since I almost called it a day, I got so excited to encounter this wonderful scene, and avidly kept releasing the shutter. This prize will encourage me to make further efforts in my photography from now on.