Sep 19, 2016
Abandoned Japanese park with hundreds of stone sculptures of ordinary people
Welcome to Fureai Sekibutsu no Sato. Literally “the village where you can meet stone statues” (ふれあい石像の里), an abandoned park in Osawano, Toyama, is a place where almost three decades ago a very rich man named Mutsuo Furukawa — a chairman of a medical corporation — decided to build an area with hundreds of sculptures in hopes to keep them with him for all eternity. He wanted the park to become a popular tourist place where people could come to relax.
Furukawa reportedly paid 6 billion yen (or 60 million dollars) to a Chinese sculptor in 1989 to create the statues. Today there are about 800 of them, sitting like frozen in place on the hills along the bank of Jinzugawa river. Some are based on people Furukawa knew during his lifetime, and some are Buddhist figures.
“I found this incredible place in Toyama Prefecture. I felt like I’d accidentally stumbled into some forbidden area. Amazing,” wrote photographer Ken Ohki who recently shared some amazing photos of the park on his blog.