Suiseki or Viewing stones.

A Toyama, or mountain stone, on a 'Daiza', or wooden stand carved to its shape.

Suiseki is an art form in it's own right, with clubs and national associations devoted to its study.

The appreciation of Suiseki is I must confess a far more complex art form than the apprieciation of bonsai, but the more I find out about it and the more good examples I see, the more I like it.

Suiseki are always displayed on a stand, or tray, which may be a shallow bonsai tray filled with sand.

Suiseki are classified into types, with over forty listed in detail. A few of the more common types are shown below.

Toyama. Rocks with the form of a distant mountain.

Dan-ishi . Rocks with a steplike rise of slope towards a cliff.

Doha. Rocks representing rolling hills. Shown in a bonsai dish, filled with sand.

Taki-ishi. Rocks showing the beauty of a narrow, deep gorge, with a waterfall running down it.

Mizutamari. Rocks with the scenic beauty of a pond or lake. When displayed the hollow is filled with water, often with a drop of milk added to make it obvious.

Shima-gata. Island shaped rocks.

Ama-yadori. The shelter rock, a rock having an overhang, providing shelter.

Kuzuya. Rocks representing on old thatched house.

Some of my pet rocks

The stone to the right depicts a snow covered mountain. The daiza was carved from mahogany.

This suiseki is part of a larger stone. Cutting stones, while not ideal, is acceptable. The daiza was carved from mahogany.

The stone is meant to represent a waterfall, but some friends tell me they think it looks like a guinea pig (cavey).

I acquired this stone from an aquarist supplier, who told me it was referred to as a 'Tiger's eye'. Its form represents a series if plateau climbing into the distance.

Allen. C. Roffey 23:44 14/04/2005