Architect Rem Koolhaas – author of Delirious New York – and curator Hans Ulrich Obrist – known for his exhibitions and his “endless conversation” with hundreds of artists and thinkers, racking up 2,000 hours of interviews since 1990 – will discuss their new book Project Japan, part oral history and part documentation of Japan’s radical mode of nation building. The event will take place March 8th at 7:00pm at the NYPL (New York Public Library) in the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building. More information on the event after the break.
In trialogue with Paul Holdengraber, Koolhaas and Obrist will explore the many lessons of Metabolism – the first non-western avant-garde movement – for today: how an activist state mobilized its best talents and meticulously planned the future of its cities, how the media adopted the architect as a serious agent of social change (rather than the hyped “starchitect”), how various disciplines – architecture, art, sociology, technology – collaborated to produce something new.
Between 2005 and 2011, architect Rem Koolhaas and curator Hans Ulrich Obrist interviewed the surviving members of Metabolism—the first non-western avant-garde, launched in Tokyo in 1960, in the midst of Japan’s postwar miracle.
Project Japan features hundreds of never-before-seen images—master plans from Manchuria to Tokyo, intimate snapshots of the Metabolists at work and play, architectural models, magazine excerpts, and astonishing sci-fi urban visions—telling the 20th century history of Japan through its architecture, from the tabula rasa of a colonized Manchuria in the 1930s to a devastated Japan after the war, the establishment of Metabolism at the 1960 World Design Conference in Tokoy, to the rise of Kisho Kurokawa as the first celebrity architect, to the apotheosis of Metabolism at Expo ’70 in Osaka and its expansion into the Middle East and Africa in the 1970s. The result is a vivid documentary of the last moment when architecture was a public rather than a private affair. For more information, please visit here.