How to Make a Japanese House / Cathelijne Nuijsink

  • 29 Jun 2012
  • by
  • Publications

Nowhere in the world have architects built so many small and exceptional homes as in Japan, and nowhere with such ingenuity and success. How to Make a Japanese House presents 21 contemporary houses and situates them in the evolution of Japanese housing. Simultaneously, the book provides insight into the unique design approach of three different generations of Japanese architects.

The interviews with architects such as Jun Aoki, Ryue Nishizawa and Sou Fujimoto clarify in a personal way the backgrounds of the designs. With her fascination for Japanese culture, takes the reader on a journey into the contemporary Japanese house. Using a rich array of research, drawings and photographs, How to Make a Japanese House demonstrates that Japanese homes offer a radically different way of thinking about architecture.

The extremely small Japanese dwelling, by Western standards, can barely be considered a comfortable place. This requires knowledge of the traditional Japanese home, the family culture and the limitations of building in densely populated areas. The strength of the Japanese dwelling turns out not to lie in a rational quantity of square metres, but to be of a spiritual nature.

Publisher: NAi Publishers
 16 x 24 cm
Pages: 328
Format: Sander Boon
ISBN: 978-90-5662-850-5

020 Foreword / Taro Igarashi
022 Introduction Essay, The Japanese Single-Family Home / Cathelijne Nuijsink
The 1950s Generation
032 Suburban Toy House /Jun Aoki
044 Steel Train / Kengo Kuma
056 Levels of Complexity / Kazuyo Sejima
068 Under the Canopy / Kazuhiro Kojima
080 Four Architectural Generations, Monologue by Yoshiharu Tsukamoto

The 1960s Generation
084 Kaleidoscopic Views / Manabu Chiba
096 Activating the Gaps / Yoshiharu Tsukamoto
108 Void in a Void /Akira Yoneda
120 Curves for Privacy / Katsuhiro Tsukamoto
128 Community Spheres / Ryue Nishizawa
140 From Ripples to Wave, Monologue by Taro Igarashi

The 1970s Generation
144 Nested Boxes / Sou Fujimoto
156 Mountainous Landscape / Akihisa Hirata
168 Two Unified Views /  Kumiko Inui
176 Heavenly State / Jun Igarashi
188 Friendly Nod / Makato Takei + Chie Nabeshima
200 A Violin Inside the Rock / Masahir Harada + Mao Harada
212 Alleyway Living / Makoto Tanjiri
224 Lively Balconies / Go Hasegawa
236 Empty House / Hideyuki Nakayama
248 Unreachable Space / Yuko Nagayama
256 Transparent Sceneries / Junya Ishigami
266 Ruler of the Site / Ryuji Nakamura
276 New Directions, Monologue by Jun Aoki

Thematic Essays
280 Architecture and the City / Riken Yamamoto, Manabu Chiba, Ryuji Fujimura
288 Alternatives to the Architects / Kazuhiko Namba, Shigeru Oshima, Tadashi Fukuoka
296 Traditional Aesthetics or Modern Ethics? / Kengo Kuma, Yasuhiro Yamahita, Masahiro Harada
306 The Role of Structures / Jun Sato, Hidefumi Ohno, Ryota Kidokoro
314 Inside the House / Kyoichi Tsuzuki, Yuko Ando, Naoki Terada

323 Bibliography
325 Photo Credits
326 Acknowled


Cite: Hernandez, Diego. "How to Make a Japanese House / Cathelijne Nuijsink" 29 Jun 2012. ArchDaily. Accessed 25 May 2015. <>
  • Gica

    I want it! I need it!

  • WT

    The best way to make Japanese house – is to think as Japanese… but it is impossible.

  • Orlando Quintero

    hire a japanese architect

  • Guillermo Hevia

    Congratulations Cathelijne! Finally ready! regards from Chile