I love this funky bonsai. Though I suspect someone like Robert Steven could place it in a category, to my eyes it’s one of a kind. Though it wouldn’t be a stretch to place it in the Chinese Penjing tradition (there’s just nothing Japanese or Western about it). A couple people have posted it on facebook without attribution, so rather than reward their laziness with links, we’ll turn this into a quick contest. The first person to identify the owner and the species of this tree, along with a link that provides proof, will win a 25.00 gift certificate to Stone Lantern. You can put your answer in the comments below.
Sometimes I see the same bonsai posted on facebook by ten different people (or groups, or companies). Usually unattributed. In spite of conventional wisdom about mellowing, my gut reaction to unattributed bonsai photos hasn’t lessened a bit. It’s lazy and unkind to the person who took the trouble to style the tree, take the photo and then post it for the enjoyment of others.
I suspect I’m fighting a losing battle. From what I can tell, facebook is mostly ‘look at me and like me,’ rather than useful knowledge. I do understand that there are exceptions and I’m not particularly interested in being labeled an old curmudgeon, so mostly I keep my mouth shut (fingers in check). Still, it wouldn’t hurt to exercise the tiniest degree of curiosity and ask who the tree belongs to or what kind of tree is it rather than the default ‘nice’ or ‘awesome.’
Here’s another funky Penjing. Even though the pot and stand overwhelm the tree a bit (in this photo at least), still it’s a great example of of what can happen when you marry a high degree of creativity with masterful technique. The photo appear on a Bark post from 2010. Here’s the original caption: A magical Chinese elm Penjing by Wang Huai Shun. Did this creative landscape, and others like it, influence some of Kimura’s more daring innovations? Robert Steven’s too? From Bonsai Today issue 98. Submitted by Karin Albert.
Here’s something you might consider spending your 25.00 gift certificate on. If you like Penjing (why wouldn’t you?), you’ll love this beautiful book. It’s currently on special at Stone Lantern for 22.00. Less your 10% to 30% Site Wide Sale discount.