[ by Charles Cameron — scitech & artpo, two ways of seeing ]
It is cherry blossom season in Japan:
The upper panel image above is from an Economist blog, the lower from a Hiroshige print.
From the Economist piece, timeless:
HANAMI, the Japanese custom of contemplating the impermanence of life by gazing at the fleeting beauty of blossoming flowers, goes back a long way. “The Tale of Genji”, a tenth-century masterpiece that is perhaps the world’s first novel, devotes a chapter to the cherry-blossom festival staged in the emperor’s great hall. Diarists have keenly chronicled the comings and goings of cherry blossoms for centuries—records from Kyoto, the old capital, date back 1,200 years. This precious, ancient data set reveals a disturbing trend: in recent decades, the blossoms have emerged much sooner than they once did.
and (continuing) in our own time:
This precious, ancient data set reveals a disturbing trend: in recent decades, the blossoms have emerged much sooner than they once did.
Japan’s cherry blossoms are emerging increasingly early
Experts think climate change is to blame
Early: unh-uh. Fleeting: yes.