Contest Jury Members

IAPLC jury members are selected from several different areas of the world for fair and impartial evaluation. Furthermore, the contest jury consists of not only professional aquascapers but also those who have experience and career in the area of aquatic plants and aquarium hobby, including researchers in academia and magazine editors, in order to avoid influence of individual’s likes and tastes over the contest result. IAPLC holds the policy to make evaluations from diverse points of view.

*Mr. Mitsuo Yamasaki, who has been on the judging panel since 2001, will step down from his position, but he will continue his involvement with the IAPLC as a honorary judge.

Hiroshi Yamada / JAPAN

山田 洋/日本

Mr.Yamada is the director-general of Guppy Co., Ltd. While operating aquarium shop, he has authored many books about aquatic plants and aquarium hobby. Based on his own research results and know-how, he has been conveying the fascination of planted aquarium to aquarists since the predawn of aquatic plant history in Japan. He has been engaged in fish breeding in recent years.

A traditional, yet sophisticated work, surprisingly evolved work,
I always appreciate to encounter your planted aquarium.

Hajime Ozaki / JAPAN

尾崎 初/日本

Mr. Ozaki represents Penguin Village Co., Ltd. Delivering the idea of planted aquarium as part of interior decor, his stylish shops are fairly well-known in Japan. He has been proposing “the lifestyle with planted aquarium” along with the concept, “ECO SYSTEM”, which teaches how to build a natural ecosystem inside an aquarium.

Although it is said the history of planted aquarium started in 1980s, it is still new as one of art forms. We are looking forward to seeing your sense of creativity in this new world.

Shogo Yamaguchi / JAPAN

山口 正吾/日本

The chief editor of AQUA LIFE that introduces attractiveness or appreciation of aquatic plants and planted aquarium. MPJ Co.,Ltd, a company he belongs to, publishes “AQUA PLANTS” annually and more aquarium magazines/books that provide useful information for aquarium hobbyists.

There are still many messages that Mr. Takashi Amano left, and this annual contest put much value on free expression. Grow your imagination and express your feeling in aquarium.

Sergei M. Kochetov / RUSSIA

Dr.Kochetov is a former contributing editor of Russian aquarium magazine, Аквариум. He is introducing the International Aquatic Plants Layout Contest to the world's planted aquarium hobbyists through his internet site, www.kochetov.info. As an ichthyologist, he has joined many field research of freshwater environment throughout Russia, including Lake Baikal.

Dear devoted aquarists! I am happy to invite you to take part in the main and most prestigious in the world aquarium design competition IAPLC 2018!
It is evident that in aquarium hobby the Nature itself gives you unlimited opportunities to express all your fantasy and skills in creation your own unique underwater layouts.
Dear Aquarium Colleagues, I am especially pleased to call for your bright participation in IAPLC 2018 during the period of 150th Anniversary of Russian Aquaristics.

Yu-Fa Huang / TAIWAN

黄 裕發/台湾

Mr. Huang represents Easy Trading Co., Ltd. He has played a leading role in the Taiwanese planted aquarium industry over years, and greatly helped introducing the Nature Aquarium there. Mr. Huang supports local hobbyist groups to attract more people to the aquatic plants hobby.

The IAPLC is the top planted aquarium contest in the world, where aquarium hobbyists gather from the world competing their skills to get the Grand Prize with their high-skilled aquarium layouts. This contest inspires your creativity, brings you a chance to know the aquarium hobbyists around the globe, to communicate them and deepen your knowledge with them.
I sincerely hope many planted aquarium enthusiasts participate this contest and motivate their skills.

Seong Soo Han / KOREA

韓 聖洙/韓国

Mr. Han is managing director of Songwon Trading. Inspired by the concept of Nature Aquarium, proposing the coexistence of fish and aquatic plants, he introduced Nature Aquarium in South Korea. He has a profound knowledge in plants in general including alpine plants, and actively working on research of aquatic plants in his greenhouse.

Dear participants of the IAPLC 2018, from this very moment, hobby will be a meaningful part of our lives. Nature Aquarium is one of aquarium hobby and it also gives beauty and top notch quality into our daily life. Each of you participants are expected to embody this role. I hope every participants enrich their skills and technique.

David Boruchowitz / U.S.A.

Former editor-in-chief of Tropical Fish Hobbyist magazine, which is distributed in many countries around the world. He has been an aquarist for 60 years and also authored more than 20 books about ornamental fish and the aquarium hobby.

The entries in the IAPLC set the bar higher every year, but somehow the contestants always rise to the challenge.

Frantisek Kolin / CZECH REPUBLIC

Mr. Kolin is chief editor of Czech aquarium magazine, "Akvarium Zive". He is president of Czechoslovakia Nature Aquarium Club, and organizing special event in Prague, Skalare Championship and Aqua Festival.

I wish all participants good luck at IAPLC 2018.

Fang Xiao / CHINA


Ms. Xiao concurrently serves as Head of National Fisheries Technical Extension Center, Secretary General of China Society of Fisheries and Executive Director of China Fisheries Magazine.  She has been engaged in various fisheries management issues for years.  Ms. Xiao also helps promote the planted aquarium hobby as part of her commitment to encourage future development of the aquarium hobby in China.

The International Aquatic Plants Layout Contest represents the highest level competition of the world’s aquatic plants landscape. Every award-winning project will lead the future trend of aquatic plant landscape. We expect to see more and more participants bring about their innovative and incredible projects filled with their imagination during the session of 2018 contest. We also look forward to witnessing more Chinese participants get involved into contest to demonstrate Chinese cultural connotation through their works.

Friedrich Bitter / GERMANY

CEO, Bitter Exotics – the wholesale business of freshwater organisms, mainly invertebrates, killifish and Cichlids. He is the chief editor of German aquarium magazine "AMAZONAS" from 2018, and a frequent writer of articles for international magazines of nature and biology besides his own books. Mr. Bitter also runs the Europe’s largest internet forum for freshwater organisms called “GARNELENFORUM”, which has about 30,000 memberships.

My best wishes to all the participants of the IAPLC 2018. With your works you add an important and valuable input to our wonderful hobby.

Armando Miguel Alves / BRAZIL

Mr. Alves has been the executive editor of "aqua magazine", which is the major Brazilian aquarium magazine. The magazine's composition receives a great reputation for not only the technical contents of the aquarium hobby but also the creative words and portrayals enriching the magazine.

Dear contestants in IAPLC 2018!
Don’t lose this great opportunity of showcasing the beauty of your talent and work to thousands of passionate hobbyists that we are as a community. We look forward to your layout!

Philippe Chevoleau / FRANCE

Mr. Chevoleau is chief editor of French aquarium magazine, "AQUAmag", and the garden pond magazine, "Bassins de Jardin".He has engaged in editing of aquarium magazines since 1995 and written articles mostly fish keeping and breeding. And his reports of the IAPLC raised French hobbyists’ interest to the planted aquarium.

The IAPLC is not just a question of making the best looking aquarium.
It is also to spread the beauty of Nature all over the world. We count on you!

Rolf Dennison / SOUTH AFRICA

The managing director of the magazine, “The Fishkeeper” - Mr. Dennison grew up on a tropical fish breeding farm that his parents used to own. In 2007 he established Dennison Publishing, which eventually published South Africa’s only magazine for the marine and freshwater aquarist aquarists. He has been passionately involved in introducing the fascinating tropical fishes and aquatic plants in South Africa.

This competition is so good for the planted tank industry and inspires so many people around the world to get involved in this hobby.

S.K. Unnikrishnan / INDIA

Professional aquatic plant grower and technical expert - Dr. Unnikrishnan, after being awarded PhD on Plant Biotechnology, joined Oriental Aquarium Pte Ltd, which is an aquatic plants farm in Singapore, as a research officer. Currently he is involved in production of aquarium plants by employing advanced green house technology and tissue culture techniques. He makes a contribution to supply aquatic plants in India.

Be a part of this internationally acclaimed contest not as mere participant but as a stiff competitor and allure the attention of Nature Aquarium World towards you.