In December I went to Japan for SIGGRAPH Asia. I took the opportunity to visit nearby Kamakura and its giant Buddha statue (Daibutsu). The bronze Buddha was cast in 1252 and originally stood inside a large wooden temple hall. The surrounding temple was destroyed and washed away multiple times by typhoons and tidal waves, but, due to its size and weight (13.35 meters tall and 93 tons) the Buddha stood unaffected. The caretakers rebuilt the temple around the Buddha for a while, but in the late 15th century gave up. Since 1495 the Buddha has been standing in the open air.