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21 Projects Where Kengo Kuma (Re)Uses Materials in Unusual Ways

04:00 - 30 May, 2019
21 Projects Where Kengo Kuma (Re)Uses Materials in Unusual Ways, Mont-Blanc Base Camp / Kengo Kuma & Associates. Image Courtesy of Kengo Kuma and Associates
Mont-Blanc Base Camp / Kengo Kuma & Associates. Image Courtesy of Kengo Kuma and Associates

Kengo Kuma uses materials to connect with the local context and the users of his projects. The textures and elementary forms of constructive systems, materials, and products, are exhibited and used in favor of the architectural concept, giving value to the functions that will be carried out in each building.

From showcases made with ceramic tiles to the sifted light created by expanded metal panels, passing through an ethereal polyester coating, Kuma understands the material as an essential component that can make a difference in architecture from the design stages. Next, we present 21 projects where Kengo Kuma masterfully uses construction materials.

V&A Dundee / Kengo Kuma and Associates. Image © Hufton+Crow Camper Paseo de Gracia / Kengo Kuma & Associates. Image © ImagenSubliminal GC Prostho Museum Research Center / Kengo Kuma & Associates. Image © Daici Ano Archives Antoni Clavé / Kengo Kuma & Associates. Image © 11h45 + 44

Split-Level Homes: 50 Floor Plan Examples

08:00 - 27 August, 2018
Split-Level Homes: 50 Floor Plan Examples , Cortesía de Fabián Dejtiar
Cortesía de Fabián Dejtiar

Faced with the challenge of designing homes on terrains with steep slopes - or in compact urban contexts that do not allow much variation in plan - several architects have experimented and proposed split-level homes to enhance the use of space, allowing, among other things, interesting visual perspectives.

These variations can be seen in numerous examples published on our site. Below, we have selected 50 examples that can help you in your next project. 

Spotlight: Kengo Kuma

07:00 - 8 August, 2018
Spotlight: Kengo Kuma, Asakusa Culture and Tourism Center. Image © Takeshi Yamagishi
Asakusa Culture and Tourism Center. Image © Takeshi Yamagishi

Kengo Kuma (born 8th August, 1956) is one of the most significant Japanese figures in contemporary architecture. His reinterpretation of traditional Japanese architectural elements for the 21st century has involved serious innovation in uses of natural materials, new ways of thinking about light and lightness and architecture that enhances rather than dominates. His buildings don't attempt to fade into the surroundings through simple gestures, as some current Japanese work does, but instead his architecture attempts to manipulate traditional elements into statement-making architecture that still draws links with the area in which it's built. These high-tech remixes of traditional elements and influences have proved popular across Japan and beyond, and his recent works have begun expanding out of Japan to China and the West.

Green Cast. Image Courtesy of kengo kuma & associates GC Prostho Museum Research Center. Image © Daici Ano Même – Experimental House. Image Courtesy of kengo kuma & associates Shun Shoku Lounge by Guranavi. Image Courtesy of kengo kuma & associates + 37

Corrugated-Sheet House / Daisuke Yamashita Architects

19:00 - 12 April, 2018
Corrugated-Sheet House / Daisuke Yamashita Architects, © Takeshi Yamagishi
© Takeshi Yamagishi

© Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi + 48

House in Iwasawa / Opensite architecture studio

19:00 - 2 September, 2016
 House in Iwasawa / Opensite architecture studio, © Takeshi Yamagishi
© Takeshi Yamagishi

© Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi + 22

Venice Biennale 2014: Japan Pavilion to Examine Radical Experiments of the 1970s

00:00 - 7 May, 2014
Venice Biennale 2014: Japan Pavilion to Examine Radical Experiments of the 1970s, Japan Pavilion Installation Image. Image © Keigo KOBAYASHI
Japan Pavilion Installation Image. Image © Keigo KOBAYASHI

The influence of Western civilization and the birth of modernization following World War II lead Japan to become the world’s second largest economy by 1968. With this came a host of problems, namely environmental pollution and the oil crisis, which triggered the reexamination of modernism in Japanese architecture and a series of radical experiments by young architects that inevitably lead to a new vision of the city.

Highlighting the work of these young architects, as well as historians, urban observers, artists and magazines of the 1970s, Japan’s participation at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale will spotlight the “independent, fundamentally innovative responses” that “unfolded a new fertile field of architecture” and revealed the “essential power” our profession has in the real world.

House in Yokawa / Mosaic Design

01:00 - 6 March, 2014
House in Yokawa / Mosaic Design, © Takeshi Yamagishi
© Takeshi Yamagishi

© Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi + 21

  • Architects

  • Location

    Japan
  • Category

  • Design Team

    Ko Nakamura, Yurika Orita
  • Constructor

    Yamamoto Komuten
  • Area

    253.43 sqm
  • Project Year

    2013
  • Photographs

T-House / Satoru Ito Architects

01:00 - 7 November, 2012
© Satoru Ito
© Satoru Ito

© Satoru Ito © Satoru Ito © Satoru Ito © Takeshi Yamagishi + 19

M House / D.I.G Architects

00:00 - 20 August, 2012
M House / D.I.G Architects, © Takeshi Yamagishi
© Takeshi Yamagishi

© Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi + 14

  • Architects

  • Location

    Nagoya-shi, Japan
  • Category

  • Design Team

    Akinori Yoshimura, Maki Yoshimura
  • Collaborators

    Takashi Manda
  • Area

    92.1 m2
  • Project Year

    2009
  • Photographs

Asakusa Culture and Tourism Center / Kengo Kuma & Associates

12:30 - 5 July, 2012
Asakusa Culture and Tourism Center / Kengo Kuma & Associates, © Takeshi Yamagishi
© Takeshi Yamagishi

© Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi + 18

Kanayama Community Center / Kengo Kuma & Associates

00:00 - 19 January, 2012
Kanayama Community Center / Kengo Kuma & Associates, © Takeshi Yamagishi
© Takeshi Yamagishi

© Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi + 9

Ebi / yHa architects + L&C design

00:00 - 17 February, 2011
Ebi / yHa architects + L&C design, © Takeshi Yamagishi
© Takeshi Yamagishi

© Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi + 24

  • Architects

    yHa architects (Yujin HIRASE)+ L&C design (Ayaka YASUDA)
  • Location

    Tokyo, Japan
  • Category

  • Constructor

    Kitano Kensetsu Co., Ltd.
  • Area

    111.0 m2
  • Project Year

    2007
  • Photographs

YNH / yujin HIRASE

00:00 - 11 February, 2011
YNH / yujin HIRASE , © Takeshi Yamagishi
© Takeshi Yamagishi

© Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi + 27

IVY House / SPEAC

00:00 - 23 August, 2010
IVY House / SPEAC, © Takeshi Yamagishi
© Takeshi Yamagishi

© Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi © Takeshi Yamagishi + 17

  • Architects

  • Location

    Japan
  • Category

  • Architect

    Hiroyuki Miyabe
  • Architect In Charge

    Tomoko Kawai
  • Producer

    Hiroya Yoshizato
  • Project Year

    2009
  • Photographs