A Guide to Kyoto’s Wooden and Traditional Architecture
For more than a thousand years, wood has been the primary building material in Japan. In many parts of the building, the structural framework is often exposed, becoming one of the distinctive features of Japanese architecture.
Therefore, the intricate work of the master carpenters is indispensable from the development of Japanese architecture. One only needs to stroll through one of the many temple complexes in Kyoto like Daitoku-ji (大徳寺) to find such beautiful and expressive structures created by the master carpenters through the years.
The fan-shaped rafter, or ougidaruki (扇垂木), can be found in some of the Zen style buildings. The double rows of rafters would radiate from above the central ceiling, fanning out around the entire structure. Along with the oft imposing roof structure, the exposed rafters are often some of the most prominent features of such wooden buildings in Japan.

Even though Suikoushya International Craft School is now up and running in France, our Kyoto workshop will still continue to operate and we want to welcome you when you’re in Kyoto!

Here in Kyoto you can explore the many different wooden architectural treasures of Japan!

The shape of the roof of the temple~Kyoto Traditional Architecture guide~