|Imperial Villa Katsura|
"Set in wooded surroundings within the ancient perimeter of the imperial capital, Kyoto, the rikyu, or separated residence, of the Katsura Palace is the finest product of a secular and unofficial tradition. It was built in the opening decades of the 17th century by Kobori Enshu, tea ceremony master and architect, who sought to express his ideals of rustic simplicity and picturesque nature on a larger scale than had been attempted before.
"Of the three main component buildings, Ko-shoin, Chu-shoin and Shin-goten, the first is in the more ceremonial shoin style and the latter two in the more intimate sukiya style. From the 14th century the cultivated nobility increasingly rejected the ornate grandeur of the town palace for an architecture designed above all to harmonize with a natural setting. Sukiya traces its origin to the farmer's cottage and the mountain hut, whose aesthetic was already distilled in the ceremonial tea-hut."