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Contemporary Japanese Architecture

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By Philip Jodidio

Since Osaka World Expo ’70 brought contemporary forms center stage, Japan has been a key player in global architecture. Presenting the latest in Japanese building, this book reveals how the likes of Tadao Ando, SANAA, Shigeru Ban, Kengo Kuma, and Junya Ishigami are relinking past, present, and future—building greener and smarter than ever before.

Japan's contemporary architecture has long been among the most inventive in the world, recognized for sustainability and infinite creativity. No fewer than eight Japanese architects have won the Pritzker Prize. Since Osaka World Expo ’70 highlighted contemporary forms, Japan has been a key player in global architecture. Tadao Ando's geometry put Japanese building on the map, bridging East and West. After his concrete buildings, figures like Kengo Kuma, Shigeru Ban, and Kazuyo Sejima pioneered a more sustainable approach. Younger generations have taken new directions, in harmony with nature, traditional building, and an endless search for forms. Presenting the latest in Japanese building, this book links this unique creativity to Japan's high population density, modern economy, long history, and continual disasters in the form of earthquakes. Accepting ambiguity, constant change, and catastrophe is a key to understanding how Japanese architecture differs from that of Europe or America. This compact edition highlights 37 architects and 53 exceptional projects by Japanese masters—from Tadao Ando’s Shanghai Poly Theater, Shigeru Ban’s concert hall La Seine Musical, SANAA’s Grace Farms, Fumihiko Maki’s 4 World Trade Center to Takashi Suo’s much smaller sustainable dental clinic. An elaborate essay traces the building scene from the Metabolists to today, showing how the interaction of past, present, and future has earned contemporary Japanese architecture worldwide recognition.

Hardcover, 480 pages, 2023.

6.4 x 8.9 in.

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