Rice Paddies in Gyoda Transform Into Artworks to Mark Tokyo Olympics

Rice Paddies in Gyoda Transform Into Artworks to Mark Tokyo Olympics

They feature iconic Japanese images!

Tokyo Olympics 2020 has been making waves in recent weeks — from kimonos created for every nation to medals incorporating recycled materials. Undoubtedly, much has been done to ensure the international sporting event leaves an indelible mark despite the unprecedented challenges; one of which may easily go unnoticed unless you admire it from a high vantage point. We’re talking about the rice paddies in Japanese’s city of Gyoda, which were transformed into colossal masterpieces to mark the grand affair. 

Also read: True Sportsmanship: Best Friends Decide to Share Gold Medals in Olympics!

Rice paddies in Gyoda

A charming town nestled in northern Saitama, Gyoda has annually imbued artistic touches to sprawling rice paddies since 2008. The aim: To add on to its touristy allure. In fact, it has even gone on to clinch the title of the “World’s Largest Rice Field Art” accorded by the Guinness World Records in 2015.

This year, with Tokyo Olympics 2020 unfolding in the country, the rice paddy murals aptly feature iconic Japanese images. Making an appearance are the famous wave and Mount Fuji of Katsushika Hokusai’s woodblock print and a kabuki actor with face paint.

They were specially chosen to highlight Japan’s cultural heritage to international guests that were expected to grace the country during the event. Unfortunately, the pandemic has halted the onslaught of visitors. Thankfully though, we are still able to feast our eyes upon the magnificent murals, all without crossing borders.

How are they created?

Creating the rice paddy art involves sheer hard work. While it may seem that the area has been intricately cut out to form shapes, that’s not the case. On the contrary, a committee selects the design early in the year. Afterwards, volunteers put their backs into planting a variety of colourful rice to bring the artwork to life. It is often done in the month of May before the rice blooms in July. 

It doesn’t stop there, either! A handful of officials from the city’s agricultural department have to maintain the artwork through the means of weeding. 

Also read: This Petition Wants to Make the ‘Yu-Gi-Oh!’ Card Game an Olympic Sport

Next time you’re in Japan, you can catch sight of the rice paddy field from an adjacent lookout spot that towers 50 metres. You can find it at the Gyoda Ancient Lotus Park — make sure to add it to your itinerary!

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Ifah Sakinah
Ifah Sakinah

Sakinah has a discerning palate and an innate desire to satisfy her inner curiosity. While she hasn't been everywhere, it's definitely on her list.