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Chairman’s Statement
Mr. Sae Won Kim

It is a great privilege for the Asia-Pacific Region of the World Bonsai Friendship Federation (WBFF) to host the 2026 World Bonsai Convention (WBC) in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia.  I am honored to serve as WBFF Chairman, and hope that my 4-year term is sufficient to revolutionize the international federation by working step-by-step to realize the community's bonsai dreams. 

 

We were brought together by a common passion -- pure love of bonsai & suiseki; and remember that beginning in the 1970s our pioneers worked tirelessly to establish the bonsai federation to unite the world bonsai community.  I will continue the efforts to promote bonsai as a living art that can be appreciated by all people, advancing international friendship and goodwill by exchanging knowledge among the countries, focusing particularly on promoting the art of bonsai in areas of the globe where WBFF is not yet represented.

 

I want to ensure the magnificent continuity of WBFF's noble mission to promote World Peace Through Bonsai.  In doing so, I pledge to assure the success of the quadrennial World Bonsai Convention (WBC) as a top priority of WBFF, and also extend an open invitation to any nation within a WBFF Region to take part in organizing and promoting a Regional WBC every two years.

My goal is to convey the timelessness inherent in the concept of bonsai, an art form with a history that reaches back thousands of years.  A bonsai is never “finished,” and can live beyond any person’s lifetime.  A bonsai may be just a small tree, but it has the magical power to enrich people’s lives and provide happiness and peace, spreading from country to country for the good of the world.

 

My hope is that bonsai, while merely a little tree potted in a tray, can be both (a) a strong symbol of peace in the world and also (b) a constant reminder of the existential threat to the fragile beauty of our natural world posed by global warming and environmental crisis.  My message is to highlight that everything we do originates from our heart, so with deep respect and great urgency I ask bonsai communities around the world to be more conscious of this increasingly ominous threat and open their “green” hearts to combat climate change in every way possible.

 

Bonsai individuals always work with these silent creatures – living organisms in containers, and we know that our experience with them goes much deeper and beyond just being an artist of plants.  For many centuries, humans have been creating the arts of nature that symbolize stability, self-possession, wisdom, and morality of the people.  I am pleased to see that the appreciation of bonsai has expanded around the globe, and is being more widely recognized an art form that has the power to unify the peoples of the world.

Sae Won Kim

Chairman, WBFF 

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My Story - Biodata

A Trailblazer in Bonsai Artistry and Floriculture
Born in 1952, Kim Sae Won’s life journey has been one of profound dedication to the art of bonsai and floriculture. Armed with a master’s degree in floriculture, he embarked on a fulfilling career that encompassed teaching, business, and international acclaim.


From 1979 to 1997, Kim served as a revered educator, teaching genetics, bonsai, floriculture, wild flower, and indoor landscape at the university level. His passion for sharing knowledge and nurturing talent played a pivotal role in shaping the next generation of horticultural enthusiasts.

In 1988, he succeeded his father’s bonsai business, and under his visionary leadership, the business flourished. By 1989, he had expanded the venture to include exporting bonsai to various corners of the globe, including Europe (U.K, Germany, Italy, Spain, France, Netherlands, Swiss, Czech, Lithuania), Japan, and Taiwan. His bonsai creations found admirers in diverse cultures, earning him a reputation as an internationally acclaimed bonsai exporter.
 

Kim Sae Won’s achievements and influence in the world of bonsai and horticulture continue to shine brightly in the present day. He holds the esteemed position of President at Sun You Won and serves as the Chairman of the World Bonsai Friendship Federation. His dedication to the global bonsai community is evident through his role as a co-organizer of the 10th World Bonsai Convention in Malaysia in 2026. Additionally, he is a respected Director of the Bonsai Club International and an international consultant to the Shanghai Botanical Garden and the Penjing branch of the China Flower Association.


His contributions extend beyond Korea’s borders, as he has served as an honorary ambassador of the Shanghai Botanical Garden and an international consultant to the Goyang International Flower Foundation. His expertise was sought after in international events such as the 2015 BCI Guangzhou and the 2017 BCI Taiwan, where he offered invaluable insights.


As a trailblazer in the field, Kim Sae Won played a vital role as the Chairman of the Organizing Committee for the 2017 ABFF Exhibition and Convention in Korea, further solidifying his position as a global leader in the bonsai community.
 

His leadership has also extended to various prestigious organizations, with past roles as the Chairman of the Korea Shohin Bonsai Association, President of the Asia Pacific Bonsai Friendship Federation, and Director of the World Bonsai Friendship Federation.

 

Beyond his accomplishments in the bonsai world, Kim Sae Won has authored six volumes, with five dedicated to the art of bonsai and one focusing on wild orchids. His books serve as valuable resources, sharing his expertise and passion for the botanical arts with enthusiasts and practitioners alike.
 

Kim Sae Won’s legacy is one of tireless dedication, innovation, and fostering global camaraderie through the beauty of bonsai and floriculture. His profound impact on the international bonsai community, coupled with his extensive knowledge and artistic prowess, has solidified his position as a respected and influential figure in the horticultural world.

Sae Won Kim

Chairman of

World Bonsai Friendship Federation (WBFF)

9th August 2023

Olive Tree Bonsai

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