This project involved redesigning one dwelling unit of condominium in Osaka, Japan.
Requests from clients were “widely and brightly expansive space” and “amount of storage that is twice as large as general house”, when we started design. Although these are at first somewhat contradictory, requests that everyone wants. For responding such requests in limited occupied area and ceiling height of building skeleton, we focused to three elements usually working behind the space.
This project involved redesigning the former illegal sex shop (common name is “Chonnoma”) to the artist in residence as part of “Koganecho Bazaar 2016”
“Koganecho Bazaar” is an art festival held every year since 2008, in Koganecho area of Yokohama, Kanagawa prefecture. Therefore, Koganecho has art everywhere, the town itself is the exhibition space. We thought to cut into the long and narrow space of the existing building and to create oblique facade with depth from frontal road. CUT is continuous with the town, and it becomes an exhibition space where people going around are pulled in by having a different axis from the surrounding building.We converted from negative situation with activity hidden from town by spatial form of “Chonnoma” to positive situation with activity opened to town by CUT.
Article source: Satoshi Kurosaki / APOLLO Architects & Associates
After inheriting the house that his father had built, the client originally considered tearing it down and rebuilding. However, the thirty-some-year-old building had an authentic beauty to it, and its reinforced concrete structure was sound, so he decided to work with the existing framework. The renovation focused on interiors and appliances, while the exterior was left nearly untouched aside from the approach, windows, and doors.
At the center of Osaka, We designed a residence that is composed of three buildings sandwiching two courtyards, so as to bring light to a narrow site surrounded by neighboring houses on three sides. As each building will hold one-room-sized space on each floor, we decided to connect rooms with tube-shaped corridor and staircase that cross the courtyards. Every room is not divided by doors, but instead is linked by long stretching-shaped entrances. They are loosely connected, but are able to gain appropriate sense of distance for habitation.
The PIER THIRTY Group’s Western Japan HQ building, built in Kurashiki City in Okayama Prefecture, is a main office building of a company which runs eating/drinking establishments all over Japan. The venue of this building comprises the office space for administrative work and the kitchen for development of new menus as well as for practice by chefs from its each branch as test kitchen.
The square and pure white building located on a 100 square meter site is called TETOTE NOTE. TETOTE means handshake in Japanese, and it signifies the collaboration among the designers, the clients, and those involved in creating. The first to fifth floors are used as an in-house studio, and the simple arrangement of oblong circular windows in the flat outer surface is impressive. These windows have two ways of opening—vertically and horizontally. Attached just at the surface of the outer wall, these windows give the impression of flatness viewed from the outside, while the thickness of the walls further emphasizes the oblong shape, capturing more random and active shadow and light. In this way the structure has the impression of duality, with a rougher interior, and it represents a stronger relationship through space and minimal detail, without incorporating a great deal of design information. Glass is used for the roofs of the stairway shafts connecting the floors, shedding light on the walls of each floor, and this light changes over time. The steps of the steel staircases are punched through with oblong holes to allow more light to reach all the way to the bottom floor.
What does an authentic workplace look like? Designing an authentic office is not an easy task. Just like the terms “artist”, “poet” or “great lover”, these are titles that are given or need to be earned rather than being self-assigned.
Our attempt in creating an authentic workplace started off with our WorkVitamins methodology. This methodology was created by me, Martin van der Linden, principal of van der Architects, when I was an assistant researcher at Waseda Univeristy in 2001 here in Tokyo. I believes that architecture can be a catalyst for change in innovative environments, and this methodology – called “WorkVitamins” – is based on this idea.