Shigeru Ban: between function and beauty

Apr 23, 2013

Shigeru Ban: between function and beauty

Architecture is rooted in the basic human need for shelter. But the profession today pays little attention to situations where the need for shelter is most urgent, such as after a disaster.

Breathing life into the nature of architecture

Nov 10, 2011

Breathing life into the nature of architecture

Staging an exhibition of architecture, perhaps more than any other art form, demands a curatorial grasp of space-making. In the inevitable absence of the built reality, stand-ins in the form of drawings, models, photographs and film are drafted in to explain and evoke architectural ...

Metabolism: When the future was still ahead

Sep 29, 2011

Metabolism: When the future was still ahead

The word “fukkō” (“reconstruction”) — is once again in the air. Ubiquitous during the postwar period, it enjoyed an earlier vogue a generation before as Tokyo was rebuilt after the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923. But while the word may be the same, its ...

Building future cities from grains of sand

Sep 15, 2011

Building future cities from grains of sand

As the last of the debris is cleared from the Great East Japan Earthquake and plans are drawn up to reconstruct the devastated towns and communities, architects and planners are pondering not just to how replace what was lost, but how to improve upon ...

'Dominique Perrault: Urban Landscape'

| Dec 10, 2010

'Dominique Perrault: Urban Landscape'

Tokyo Opera City Art Gallery Closes Dec. 26 The work of French architect Dominique Perrault is currently on show at the Tokyo Opera City Art Gallery. Today numbered among the top tier of French architects alongside Jean Nouvel and Christian de Portzamparc, Perrault shot ...

Looking beyond art's boundaries

Nov 26, 2010

Looking beyond art's boundaries

Art, it is often said, is a lens through which to see the world differently. “Differently” could mean more intensely, or more clearly, or in a new and unfamiliar way. This inevitably requires a separation between the artwork and the world. Art so understood ...

Perceptions of space, from Japan to the world

| Aug 27, 2010

Perceptions of space, from Japan to the world

“I’m a kind of iguana. But I’m the kind of iguana that travels.” So says architect Ryue Nishizawa, one half of SANAA, the creative partnership he shares with Kazuyo Sejima, about the “Galapagos Syndrome” — the term used to describe Japan’s relative isolation from ...

In search of society's true affluence

Aug 20, 2010

In search of society's true affluence

“When I was 40, my father died. When he died, he was working on a project for a children’s campground on the island of Naoshima. When I returned from Tokyo to Okayama to lead the family company, I inherited the project. As I lived ...

Structure as natural philosophy

Jan 29, 2010

Structure as natural philosophy

“Cecil Balmond is seen as being almost divine in Japan,” says Shino Nomura, the curator of the latest exhibition at Tokyo Opera City Art Gallery. Titled “Element: Cecil Balmond,” the show is a dive into the mind and work of perhaps the most celebrated ...

Bathing in timeless memories

Aug 28, 2009

Bathing in timeless memories

Artist Shinro Ohtake discusses with The Japan Times “inside-out” buildings, private memories, public meanings and other inspirations underlying the “I Love Yu” bathhouse at Naoshima. The “I Love Yu” public bathhouse is a collaboration with architects’ collective graf and is a new building, but ...