Makomanai Takino, The Cemetery With A Hidden Massive Buddha Surrounded By A Hill Of 150,000 Lavenders

Shigeo Ogawa via Vitra

What do you think when I say “cemetery”? What’s the first thing that comes into your head? What’s your first feeling? Would you believe a cemetery could be monumental and stunning? There’s a place in Sapporo, Japan, where Japanese architect, Tadao Ando turned the Makomanai Takino Cemetery into a piece of art.

In this place a massive 13.5m (44 ft) high stone Buddha statue was set 15 years ago, standing alone in a vast field. But this wasn’t giving the right restful atmosphere to the cemetery and Tadao Ando found the perfect elegant solution.

Hidden Buddha Sorraunded by Hill of Lavander
Shigeo Ogawa via Vitra

He planned to create a hill, a tunnel, an open rotunda and to plant 150,000 lavenders. The result?

Amidst a colourful field of plants – which change their colour as the season changes – you can now see the Buddha head peeking out from the underground. The statue is hidden and still rests on his base on a rounded open chamber visitors can reach through a 40m (131 ft) long tunnel.

The whole architectural construction and design is stunning and this drone aerial video proves it.

Whatever is the season you go there, you will remain astonished by the same majestic view and a different, but still amazing, expanse of colours: fresh green in spring, pale purple in summer and snow-covered in winter. All of this thanks to the lavenders.

buddha surrounded by lavender's hill
Shigeo Ogawa via Vitra

Do you like this cemetery? What do you think?


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