National Treasure Repair at CloseConstruction Tours at Miidera Branch Temple, in Otsu
Construction tours of Kojo-in Kyakuden, which is a National Treasure undergoing repairs, were held in Miidera Temple, Onjoji-cho, Otsu City, Shiga Prefecture, on August 17. Participants standing on construction work scaffolding gazed closely at its roof, which is being rethatched, and learned about preservation techniques for cultural assets.
The event was sponsored by the Shiga Prefectural Board of Education which is in charge of this renovation project. Kojo-in Kyakuden is a branch temple of Miidera Temple and was founded in 1601. Renovations of the roof, the plastered walls and other areas, are being carried out for the first time in 40 years, running from this April to year-end.
The tours were held in the morning and afternoon, four times in total. Each tour lasted 30 minutes and had around 20 participants. The staff of the Cultural Properties Protection Division explained the technique of "Kokera-buki," or wood shingle roofing, where one rectangular wooden sheet is laid on top of another, with a three-centimeter exposure. As they watched an artisan nail sheets at equal intervals with a hammer and bamboo nails, the participants called out, such as, "Beautiful."(Translated by Mie Hiuzon, Psyche et l’Amour, Inc.)