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Re: Amano gallery

>A lot of this list's content is very technical. Mastering the techniques/
>chemistry that allow for a healthy beautiful plant tank. As the hobby 
matures, I
>think we will/should gravitate towards the subject of aquascape as art. We
>appreciate/critique art, and offer ideas on what makes good art.

>If you take a look at the Amano gallery, be sure to notice the 5th one. Very
>interesting use of terracing/rock to create an outcropping. The sand below
>echoes of traditional Japanese gardens. I think this breaks new ground, as I
>have never seen a tank like it.

Hi Arthur, I totally agree - so I'll be brave and put in my 2c!

While I liked #5, and can appreciate the difficulty of setting up the rocks 
that way and getting plants growing on top of those rocks, I'm not sure I like 
the bits of "grass" in the middle of the V at the back, it put me off - nicer 
to have just the mounds, so they suggest mountains.  Nice to see some bare 
sand as part of the picture, too, especially the way it works with it.

My favourite was #2, loved the mountain top effect of the rotala wallichi(?) 
at the top left, and the open cave effect created by the planting above the 
rocks - is that just the plants growing more horizonatally at the top?  The 
different layers give the aquascape a lot of interest, yet it is still so 
simple, in that Japanese way - its so hard to not keep aquatic gardens like 
land-based cottage gardens, a bit of everything, which you try to put together 
in a pleasing fashion, I'm definitely guilty!  And what is the round-leaved 
plant in the foreground, is it micranthemum umbrosum?

I also really liked #7, am going to try something like that in one of my 
smaller tanks, which will be used for raising fry, although the two grass type 
plants here are so complementary, and work so well to contrast with the 
rounded shapes of the rocks.

What is so exquisite about Amano's tanks is the way they really seem to 
capture a slice of wild nature, and frame it so that you really appreciate 
every element.

Okay, "art critic's" hat off,

kind regards,

Susi Barber