Shigeru Ban’s Pritzker win proves that building hope is finally in vogue
The architecture world has a new laureate, and he builds in cardboard. Japan’s Shigeru Ban was named this week as the winner of the Pritzker Prize, an annual award that is often called architecture’s Nobel – and his win sends a clear and timely message. Social change, sustainability and improving the lives of the many: This is what matters now to the world of architecture. With Ban’s Pritzker, the global design elite is marking that shift.Take a Tour of Pritzker Winner Shigeru Ban's Paper Tube Structures [more inside]
The Nakagin Capsule Tower (slyt) is a prime example of the uniquely Japanese architecture known as "Metabolism", as well as the main inspiration for Tokyo's famous Capsule Hotels. The most unique feature of this building style is the interchangeability of the individual units, supposedly to allow it to adapt to changes in density and lifestyle (although that plan hasn't exactly panned out). Local residents are calling for the tower to be demolished, although a group of architects are trying to preserve it as an architectural landmark [more inside]
So, there's a Japanese artistic concept called a Thomasson. In short, they are "defunct and useless objects, attached to someone's property and aesthetically maintained." But a more nuanced explanation involves artist Akasegawa Genpei, baseball player Gary Thomasson, and a whole generation of Japanese kids who wandered around Tokyo, looking for architectural abnormalities. Now that the book has found its way to English, American readers are submitting some pretty fascinating discoveries of their own . [more inside]
The X-Seed 4000 is currently the Earth's tallest proposed structure. The project is currently on hold, due to a funding shortage^, but adventures in Arcology will probably continue.
Amazing collection of several galleries full of Japanese "urban ruins" photos, including abandoned amusement parks, refineries, apartment blocks, hospitals, schools, bowling alleys, & much more, including Battleship Island, the (previously posted) abandoned coal mining island off the coast of Nagasaki. Via.
Quicktime VR photos of Tokyo - tunnels - night - large drains - buildings - etc. The nav is mainly in Japanese but the "VR List" link, lower right, seems to be the main index.
The Site of Reversible Destiny is an "experience park" conceived on the theme of encountering the unexpected. By guiding visitors through various unexpected experiences as they walk through its component areas, the Site offers them opportunities to rethink their physical and spiritual orientation to the world. [via]
Meiji architecture The Meiji Mura is an open-air museum with many examples of Japanese Meiji-period architecture from between the mid 19th century and the early decades of the 20th. The buildings, often rescued from the threat of demolition, show how Japan developed its own distinctive modern architectural style during this period.
Mitsubishi Virtual Design Museum - look at the past, present, and future of industrial design in Japan. :: via Yesterday's Tomorrows::
Welcome to ArtServe: Art & Architecture mainly from the Mediterranean Basin and Japan.
Check out this soccer/baseball stadium. You can fold the baseball field and roll in the soccer one. Animation here. Amazing.
Urban Exploration, Japanese-style: lavishly beautiful site documenting Japan's modern ruins, via gmtPlus9.