Since my travels to Europe in the 70s I have visited many public squares: in small towns and in big cities; during the fall, winter, spring, and summer; at dawn and near dusk, day and night. In my subsequent travels −after learning about the Greek agora and the Roman forum during college− I tried to recreate the feeling of being in that ancient marketplace, in that old public square. Did anybody ever stand and think that the very spot she or he stood on would one day be a subject of a study? What went on the mind of the people as they walked among the architectures that dwarfed them? In Nashville, Tennessee, stood the only standing replica of the Parthenon of Athens. While I was in college, many times I would visit the park where the monument stood and walked around the structure, but the feeling I was searching for eluded me.
Then today it happened in what I thought was the unlikeliest place in the world: the Ebisu Garden Place, one of the many contemporary temples to the gods and goddesses of Continue reading