Nakagusuku Udun (中城御殿: Not to be confused with Nakagusuku Castle, 中城城. Which I did!) was the mansion of the Ryukyu Crown Prince and interestingly enough, it does have a lot of fancier designs.
First up, the stone wall around.
Notice that at the sides there are two large straight stones that has their tips popped above the wall height?
And perhaps most amazingly, this is one rare Ryukyuan door that has decorative metal studs! I read that metal was scarce in the past and I don’t think I saw such decorative doors even in Shuri Castle.
By the way, these two reference pictures are screen shots from a PDF that can be downloaded here. It is a full report on how the current Nakagusuku Udun is being assessed and whatnot.
This map can perhaps offer more of the Udun‘s former glory. Udun is the Okinawan reading of 御殿, it can mean the residential of Ryukyuan royals or used as an honorific.
I have a Part 2 coming up and I am just so mesmerised by the whole Ryukyuan history!
Current Nakagusuku Udun is just opposite Ryutan, a short distant from Shuri Castle.
Parts of the gates and surrounding walls remain and a whole bunch of royal treasure were either lost or damaged in the war in 1945. In 2000, in conjunction with the Okinawa Summit, a crown, royal clothing and 11 paintings were registered with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) as stolen arts.
PS:/ And something interesting here. I always draw my reimagined buildings with their doors opened, it is my hope that they get rebuilt soon and receive people again. But this round I could only find pictures of Nakagusuku Udun’s closed gates and with the beautiful door, I thought, well, it is OK to have them doors closed for once.
And then!! Last night when I finished the painting, I found this.
I really think that if you give your heart to something, they will connect back to you. Thank you for always inspiring me.