Walter Pall wrote:
I realized that there is no such thing as 'classical bonsai style'. Too many folks have radically different views of what is meant by this.
Ah, Walter, how refreshing it is to have an opportunity for a verbal brawl with you again - something I have sorely missed in recent years.
Of course there is such a thing as "classical" bonsai, in the same way there is classical and non-classical art of all genres. However, Mike's tree isn't classical bonsai, and that's where the root of this controversy lies. I shall explain:
The term "classical", when applied to artistic or creative endeavors, indicates that the work is composed or constructed according to an established and time-honored set of structural rules or principles. Bunjin, however, is a freeform style and therefor cannot be regarded as classical.
The correct term, which Bill should have used in the title of this award, is "classic", which indicates that the work is exemplary of a class or genre. The tree in question may well be a classic
example of the Yoshimura ideal, but classical
it is not.