HISTORY OF THE BONSAI STUDY GROUP - THE INDO-JAPANESE ASSOCIATION

Co-founded by Jyoti and Nikunj Parekh in 1979

 

 

The Bonsai Study Group of Indo-Japanese Association with its headquarters in Mumbai and chapters all over India,

being the largest of such groups, aims to promote better knowledge and appreciation of the art of miniaturising of trees amongst the people of India. Workshops, lecture-demonstrations, audio-visual shows, library facilities, holding of conventions and exhibitions, publication of magazines and Botanical excursions etc. are carried out with a view to encourage the growing interest of the people in South Asia towards this art. This work has received National and International recognition.

Alongside these activities, the group and its members have generously contributed and aided charities associated

with helping riot victims and earthquake victims at Latur in Maharashtra and Gujarat and have also rendered

assistance to the physically handicapped.

1979

Bonsai study group of Indo Japanese Association was inaugurated by Madam Horino with Jyoti and Nikunj Parekh as co-founders.

1st Bonsai week in Mumbai with Mr. John Naka of USA.

1981

1982

1st telecast of a film on Bonsai lent by the Parekhs. A bonsai study tour by members to

Japan and USA.

2nd Bonsai week with Mr Tom Yamamoto of Japan across India.

1984

1985

Bonsai Exhibition and NICHIN BONSAI magazine publication released.

3rd Bonsai Week with Mr. Chase Rosade of USA across India.

1987

1988

Bonsai & Saikei exhibition at Wilson college. Affilliation as chapter hobbyists granted to Indore, Madhya Pradesh.

Bonsai study tour to Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore and Thailand with visit to 2nd World Bonsai Exhibition & Convention in Japan.

1989

1990

Cema Bonsai Garden, India’s first Bonsai garden opened for public viewing at Kamla Nehru Park.

4th Bonsai Fortnight inaugurated by Consul General of Japan Mr. Mutoh. Demonstrations and Workshops conducted by Mr. Tom Yamamoto and Mr Susumu Nakamura of Japan with assistance from Parekh's in Bombay.

All India Bonsai & Saikei Exhibition & Convention held at Birla Kreeda Kendra, Mumbai. Attended by 280 delegates. More than 20,000 people visit the exhibition.

1991

1992

A year of consolidation planned. An exhibition-cum-sale of Bonsai by Bonsai Study Group members to raise funds for the group.

Mr. Peter Chan of U.K. conducted Workshop & Demonstration at the South Asia Bonsai Convention & Exhibition 1993. Mr. Khorakiwala, Sheriff of Mumbai, inaugurated the function.

1993

1994

Bonsai & Sumi-e workshops, demonstrations were held at an exhibition at Lifestyle and Culture Events 1994, in co-operation with the city of Yokohama. It was inaugurated by Consul General of Japan Mr. Suzuki, Mrs. Suzuki and Ms. Hema Malini. Susumu and Haruo Nakamura of Japan conducted the Bonsai events and Mr. Niki Aida and Ms. Mariko Otsuka conducted the Sumi-e, black ink brush painting events.

Consolidation of Bonsai Study Group activities.

1995

1996

Bonsai expert, Mr. Budi. S. Darmono of Indonesia, gave demonstrations in Mumbai and Coimbatore.

Japan 3-D, Harmony in Living, exhibition of miniature trees by our group members with an exhibition of Art Bonsai and Art Flowers with workshop by Ms. Okabe and Ms. Orita of Japan, was held from 1st to 4th February.

1997

1998

Bonsai Study Group arranged a 5-day workshop-cum-demonstration on Bonsai by Mr. Budi Sulistyo of Indonesia in Mumbai from 5th to 9th October. Successful Bonsai Exhibition at Utpal Shanghavi School was organised in November, with enthusiastic response from the suburban members.

The Bonsai Study Group celebrated its 20th Anniversary by arranging its 10th Bonsai Week in Mumbai. A week-long demonstration & workshop on Bonsai by Tropical Bonsai expert Mr. Pedro Morales from Puerto Rico, USA. It was attended by eighty Bonsai enthusiasts from Mumbai and all over India. The “JYOTI & NIKUNJ PAREKH, BONSAI - LIVING ART FUND” and South Asia Bonsai Photo Contest were created to honour the co-founders of the Bonsai Study Group.

1999

2000

The New Millennium began with the BONSAI ‘2000 exhibition of Bonsai from 17th to 20th March. With more than 400 preselected creations of nearly 70 Bonsai Study Group members at the Catering College, Dadar, Mumbai. This event was sponsored by VIDEOCON.

Lecture - Demonstrations & Workshops by Taiwanese Bonsai Master Chiang were held on 5-6-7 March. Study Group chapters at Goa and Mysore were formed in the months of March and August.

2001

2002

Bonsai exhibition held on 9-10 February with the co-operation of Archana Trust at G. D. Somani School Grounds, Mumbai. Another chapter at Panjim, Goa formed in April. Affiliation granted to Lucknow Chapter. BFFI in co-ordination with like minded groups and hobbyists arranged a correction workshop on Bonsai by Robert Steven of Indonesia at Coimbatore & Mumbai. A large number of Study Group members and affiliated chapters participated. This was followed by a workshop & demo on “Land and Water Penjing” by World renowned artist Mr. Zhao Qingquan, China.

Workshop and demonstrations on Bonsai were arranged by BFFI, the apex body of Bonsai growers in India with Mr. Budi Sulistyo & Ms. Sue Aziz of Indonesia at Mumbai, Indore & Bhopal. A large number of members and Bonsai hobbyists took part in the events. Members displayed their Suihan Penjing (Water & Stone Landscapes) on marble tray at an exhibition on 26th-27th February in Mumbai.

2003

2004

In January, an exhibition of Bonsai at General Motors showroom at Jogeshwari was organized. In February, a display of Bonsai at Friends of the Trees, VJTI, Matunga, Mumbai was held. In March, Bonsai were displayed at Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya (formerly, Prince of Wales Museum) in downtown Mumbai.

Entering the 25th year, the Bonsai Study Group along with the parent body, Indo Japanese Association, which entered 50th year, reaffirmed its aim to share knowledge on the art of miniaturising trees.

25th year celebrations finale with Bonsai events by Mr. Rob Kempkinski of USA at Mumbai & Hyderabad & Mr. M.H.Lo of Taiwan at Mumbai & Pune.

2005

2006

Bonsai display at “Friends of The Trees” was arranged at VJTI in February.

NATURE IN MINIATURE 2006, an exhibition of mini trees, forests, dry tray gardens, Saikei, Suihan Penjing amidst special display areas proved to be successful. The combination of ideas, co-operation and sponsorship support of HINDALCO, worked miracles. The exhibition was held at the prangan of Ravindra Natya Mandir, Prabhadevi, Mumbai. The inauguration was done by Hon. Minister of PWD Maharastra Shri Anil Deshmukh. Smt Rajashree Birla released the Directory of Bonsai and Swamiji from Mysore graced the occasion with Consul General of Japan as Guest of Honour.

BCI 2006 and Chencun International Penjing & Shangshi Exposition, China held in April. Was attended by many of the Mumbai and other chapter members.

Bonsai Art Group, Meerut, U.P. becomes an affiliated Chapter. The Group members displayed Bonsai

at IIT, Powai in November.

Bonsai Study Group of Indo Japanese Association, Bonsai Friendship Federation of India joined hands and sought blessings of Swamiji Ganapathy Sachchidanand of Mysore and organized an All India Bonsai Convention in Mysore on the 24th, 25th & 26th November 2007. The three-day event had more than 325 delegates from across India who brought 300 live Bonsai and another 200 bonsai photographs for display. We had Mr. I. C. Su his wife Helen, Mr. Min Hsuan Lo from Taiwan, Mr. Budi Sulistyo from Indonesia, Mr. Chase Rosade, Mrs. Solita Tafur Rosade, Mr. Guy Guidry from USA, Mr. Daizo Iwasaki and his wife Mrs. Iwasaki from Japan as invited guests for the convention. Mr. Chaingbao Xin from China was also a guest.

Demonstrations, workshops, cultural programmes and Swamiji’s healing music were held during these three days. Members could also see Swamiji’s Bonsai collection in beautiful Kishkindha Moolika Bonsai Gardens, Herbal Garden, Nakshatra Garden, Rashi Garden, Vishwam Museum consisting of many artifacts, crystals, stamps and stones collected from world over by H. H. Swamiji.

During the event many people were given awards for good bonsai, bonsai photographs, and for outstanding efforts in spreading the art in India. Nikunj and Jyoti Parekh were given following honours.

  • The Chairman Mrs. Solita Rosade of WBFF awarded them for the Noble vision of promoting world friendship, peace & goodwill through the art of bonsai.

  • World Bonsai Friendship Federation’s Award for their time and dedication in organizing and co-chairing the successful event of 2007 by Mr. Daizo Iwasaki of Japan.

  • Certificate for outstanding bonsai exhibited- of Water and land of Juinperus tree from WBFF Mr. Daizo Iwasaki of Japan Vice Chairman WBFF. An award from BCI president Mr. I.C.Su of Taiwan

  • Glass Award from Bonsai leaders of India as being Torch Bearers of Indian Bonsai Effort.

  • As best teachers of Bonsai art in India a speech from students present at the convention:
    OUR TEACHERS JYOTIBEN & NIKUNJBHAI – with a special gift for learning. And with a heart that deeply cares, you add a lot of love to everything you share, and even though you mean a lot, you will never know how much you helped to change the world through every life you touched. For sparking the creativity in the students whom you taught, and helped them strive for goals that could not be bought. You are such a special teacher, that no words can truly tell. However much you are valued for the work you do so well.

2007

2008

Banyan Bonsai Club and the Bonsai Club of Baroda

got chapter affiliation.

In February, workshops were held in Mumbai and

Coimbatore by Mr. Lutfi and Mr Hidayat from Indonesia.

Members from Pune, Indore, Nagarcoil and Silvasa,

attended the workshops.

NICHIN BONSAI magazine got a new look with a fresh

and improved layout. This was possible due to the support

we received from family members, friends and business associates of Mr. Subhash Purohit. This magazine is now dedicated to late Sadhana Subhash Purohit, whose love, devotion, efforts to pursue the Bonsai hobby and her loyalty to Bonsai Study group was unparalleled. The 1st issue of this magazine had its release function on 30th April at Textile Committee Auditorium, Prabhadevi, Mumbai. Consul General of Japan Mr Hagiuda and Mrs Sangeeta Jindal graced the occasion. Jyoti and Nikunj gave demonstration of ‘Rock grown Bonsai’.

At Preyas, Babulnath, ‘Parekh’s Shree Udyan & Daizo Iwasaki Reference Library on Bonsai & Greenery was opened.

In September, IBS-BCI 2008 was held in ST. Vincent, Aosta Valley of Italy. A group of 13 members from Mumbai and Muscat attended. Nikunj and Jyoti gave a Saikei demonstration at the convention, which was highly appreciated. The group also went to Spain, Switzerland and Italy to see Bonsai collections of masters in those countries.

Bonsai Study Group exhibited Bonsai at VJTI show organized by ‘Friends of the trees’ Display was in the form of Indian map having the themes ‘United we bloom and divided we wither’, and ‘ Unity in diversity’.

Workshops were held for members by Mr Lutfi and Mr Hidayat in Mumbai.

In July Nikunj attended WBFF – World Bonsai Convention at San Juan, Puerto Rico in USA, where Nikunj and Jyoti were honoured with Gold Medals for promoting Bonsai in India and other countries.

 

On Wednesday the 26th August 2009 at felicitation event organized by Indo-Japanese Association, Mr. Nana Chudasama, Founder of “I Love Mumbai” Committee informed the large gathering that “the honour given to Nikunj & Jyoti by World Bonsai Friendship Federation was long overdue. It is high time the Government of Maharashtra and Government of India too honour them for spreading and promoting Bonsai Art in every corner of our country." On the same occasion Ms. Pheroza Godrej, President of National Association of ‘Friends of The Trees’ complimented Parekhs as ardent greenery and nature lovers. The trustee of Indo-Japanese Association Mr. Suresh Kotak presented them with a silver salver on this occasion. The event was preceded by a presentation prepared by Students and Members of Bonsai Study Group on “Thirty years journey into the Wonder world of the Parekh couple".

 

A group of 21 members attended ASPAC 09 Convention at Taichung, Taiwan. They also went to Japan and visited Mr & Mrs Daizo Iwasaki’ s bonsai garden and gardens of other masters at Omiya. Nikunj and Jyoti gave a demo on Saikei at Taiwan during the convention which was greatly appreciated by all and for which they were presented with awards.

2009

2010

NICHIN BONSAI magazine entered 25th year of its publication.

From 8th to 12th Aug 2010, Bonsai master Chiang and Dr Fu Chen of Taiwan, gave workshops to bonsai members. Chapter affiliation granted to Muscat, Oman group.

In December 2010, our group organized an exhibition of bonsai and ‘Little Japan’ at Birla College Kalyan. Simultaneously, Bonsai demos were given for the benefit of the large number of students.

During January 2011, we had Mr Lufti and Mr Hidayat from Indonesia to give workshops in Mumbai, Bangalore, Vadodara and Bhopal. Members from Pune, Bhopal, Indore, Chennai, Mysore, Raipur and Delhi also took part in these events.

2011

2012

During 2012, All India Bonsai Convention & Exhibition 23rd - 26th November 2012 in Vadodara, Gujarat was planned with hectic preparations for the whole year by Mumbai and Vadodara members under the leadership of Parekhs and Chanda Agrawal. The all India event had headliners from China, Indonesia, Japan, Australia & USA. With the creation of team work, unity of approach and good wishes from all over the world this event was successful.

We had two successful events in 2013. In September, group of 34 members from India went to Jintan, China for World Convention. Parekh's gave a penjing demonstration. Mumbai members travelled to Yellow Mountain area for sightseeing.

Bonsai exhibition was held in Borivali, in collaboration with Borivali Sanskruti Kendra. Along with the exhibition there were bonsai demonstrations and bonsai drawing art competition for children.

2013

2014

India-Taiwan Friendship Bonsai Events held at Mumbai, Bangalore & Mysore cities from 22nd February upto 2nd March 2014. Demonstrations & workshops conducted by Min Hsuan Lo, Shi Wen Ren, Yuching Yuan and Ho Yung Yu from Taiwan and Jyoti & Nikunj Parekh assited by Sujata Bhat from Mumbai.

Sunrise on Australian Bonsai was held at Gold Coast jointly by BCI (Bonsai Clubs International) and AABC (Association of Australian Bonsai Clubs) from 21st – 24th August 2014. Parekhs were invited to give demonstration as headliners. Jyoti created Saikei with Buxus harlandii with rocks and Nikunj created Saikei with Australian Ficus with another type of rock. These two Saikei fetched more than Australian $900 in the auction. This event was attended by more than 400 people from around the world.

Consulate General of Japan, Japan Foundation & Indo-Japanese Association organized & exhibition of Bonsai, Ikebana, Sumi-e painting, origami & Japanese language at Y. B. Chawan centre on 16th November 2014.

China Convention was in 2014 where Parekhs gave a demo on Penjing with Blakia siamensis on a marble tray.

Japan 3-D, Harmony in Living, exhibition of miniature trees by our group members with an exhibition of Art Bonsai and Art Flowers with workshop by Ms. Okabe and Ms. Orita of Japan, was held from 1st to 4th February.

Few members from the Bonsai study Group attended the South Africa Bonsai Convention from 15th to 27th Oct 2015. Nikunj and Jyoti Parekh were asked to plant one tree in a forest in a tray as representatives of India.

2015

2016

Beyond the spirit of Bonsai 2016. International Bonsai Convention & Exhibition 19th to 22nd December 2016. Organized by AVADHOOTA DATTA PEETHAM KISHKINDHA MOOLIKA BONSAI GARDEN, Mysore, India, in Co-operation with BONSAI STUDY GROUP OF THE INDO-JAPANESE ASSOCIATION, MUMBAI & its affliated chapters. It was the largest all-India level display.

This year the Bonsai Study Group carried out their social responsibility with activities of greening, toilet building and eye camps for villagers.

2017

2018

An eventful year ended with Megumi Yoko Bennett visiting Mumbai, Kolhapur, Hyderabad & Lucknow for 2 day sessions accompanied by Chand & Megha, Archana & Krishna and Jyoti, Nikunj & Sujata respectively from 31st January 2018 to 13th February 2018. 

 

From 28th May onwards, a 3 days event on Creating Mountainscapes by Mr. Manoj Kumar, eminent artist of New Delhi was conducted successfully at Mumbai.

This year, the group entered its 40th year and Nichin Bonsai Magazine entered its 35th year. With the devoted team & group membership, as well as affiliated chapters, the group published two booklets on Ficus & Bougainvillea, fulfilling our goal of sharing knowledge at all times.

2019

2020

Celebrating the group entering its 41st year, we invited Mr. Moshe Emergui, a Bonsai expert from Israel to conduct events at Mumbai, Kolhapur & Chennai. Total participants 140 members.

Bonsai Study Group of The Indo-Japanese Association with headquarters at Mumbai and affiliated chapters all over India, being the largest such group aims to promote Bonsai and share knowledge amongst people in South Asia. Workshops, demonstrations, audio-visual shows arranged at Pune, Kolkatta, New Delhi, Mysore, Mumbai, Bangalore, Bhilai-Durg, Goa, Kolhapur, Indore, Nagpur, Bhopal, Coimbatore, Rajkot, Jamshedpur, Hyderabad, Renukoot, Surat, Vadodara, Ahmedabad, Akola, Chennai, Nashik, Meerut, Ratnagiri, Lucknow in India, Colombo in Sri Lanka and Oman in Muscat. etc.

This work has received National and International recognition. Our facilities include a large library of books, photo competition, publication of magazines, exhibitions, botanical excursions etc. The group carries out these activities and side by side to help riot victims, earthquake victims, food for needy school children and physically impaired. The Group emphasizes the importance of greenery, ecology alongside the art of Bonsai. The group built special toilet blocks for school children, imparting the spirit of clean & green surroundings.

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