LocationShima, Mie Prefecture, Japan
From the architect. When I first visited this site, I thought the key issues for this project were how to intertwine, dissolve, cut and take in elements of this natural environment, such as ocean, greenery, sky and wind.
This site is located in a secluded bay on a ria coast where fishing and other boats come and from where the ocean can be viewed. The contrast of ocean and greenery is beautiful an d a building was required for the client who will visit here sometimes to enjoy this place. There is a small road between the site and the ocean. Even though it is hardly used, I had to consider the lines of sight from outside and inside.
The differences in height between the ground, the building and the interior spaces are a significant component of this design.
I elevated the floor to keep a subtle distance from the ground, to create a different world and to express a feeling of floating. This strategy also accommodates the occasional exceptionally high tides peculiar to this area and avoids any direct lines of sight from the road. The wing-like eave introduces an aerodynamic element appropriate in this high-wind area. It gives a lightness to the architecture and it frames the view in the Japanese tradition of ‘borrowed scenery’.
In section this house consists of four layers. It is mostly a single volume with different floor heights and each level is connected with gentle stairs. The view lines vary from each of these different heights and the scenery of outside and inside changes. These contrasts generate a dynamic interior space. This house is like a viewing device to overlook the ocean. It has a continuity from inside and outside, bringing the scenery inside, and blending into this natural coastal environment beautifully.
I aimed to pursue a simple modern beauty where an abstract spiritual figure, and a calm and balanced figure collide.
When I sat down at the terrace one day, I saw a full moon on the horizon. The moon projected onto the sea surface and wrapped the scenery from the ‘Moon viewing deck’.