Tadao Ando: Regeneration – Surroundings And Architecture

by | 24. Aug 2012

Exhibitions and Events
I begin my architectural studies, pursuing discoveries, seeking the answers to questions, and engaging in ongoing, abstract dialogues with the histories, cultures, and societies of various places.
/Tadao Ando, excerpt from an interview in Brutus casa (Sept. 2002)

The exhibition at the Tokyo Station Gallery shows Tadao Ando’s recent work in the form of models, drawings, photographic panels, and video images and also foresees his future visions.

Tadao Ando’s designs attempt to uncover the “memory of the location” by maintaining an awareness of the new relationships that architecture can create among the city, history, and society.


“Space for Contemplation” UNESCO, Paris

Tadao Ando’s cylindrical, one-story “Space for Contemplation” in the UNESCO compound, is paved with granite slabs from Hiroshima that were irradiated during the explosion of the H-bomb in August, 1945.


Photo courtesy Tadao Ando Architect & Associates

Rebuilding Plan for the Dojunkai Aoyama Apartments (in the planning stage)
The Dojunkai Aoyama Apartments in Tokyo’s Shibuya Ward were built in 1927, after the Great Kanto Earthquake, as Japan’s first ferro concrete multifamily housing. They are valued not only for their historical worth but also as an essential presence for maintaining the “urban memory” of Tokyo.


Photo: arcspace

The rebuilding plans emphasize continuation of that memory above all. Goals of the plan include making maximum use of underground space so that half the volume of the building is below ground and keeping the building no taller than the height of the zelkova trees lining the avenue.


Photo courtesy Tadao Ando Architect & AssociatesPinault Contemporary Art Museum (in the planning stage)

This museum is located on a 3.2 hectar site on the Ile Segan in the middle of the Seine River in the south western suburbs of Paris, France.

With a wonderful location surrounded by the Seine on both sides, the land has a history of involvement in the life of Paris as the cradle of French industry and as the heartland of the labor movement since before World War II.

For the Fondation d’Art Contemporain Franois Pinault, project I studied the history of the transformation of Paris since the nineteenth century, and considered the construction of the Eiffel Tower and the consequent raising of the curtain on the age of iron.

I also reviewed the development of the “Grands Projets” along the Seine, reflecting on the significance of the river, and analyzing current social conditions. In this way, I make myself aware of every issue I can think of around the problem at hand.

/Excerpt from an interview in Brutus casa (Sept. 2002)

Photo courtesy Tadao Ando Architect & AssociatesProposal for Ground Zero, World Trade Center site (2002)

As a prayer that the souls of the people who lost their lives may find eternal rest and that this kind of incident might never happen again, Ando took the bold step of proposing to build nothing on the site except a mound of earth like an ancient Japanese burial mound. Its meaning would be “the Earth as one community,” and its shape and dimensions would take as their motif the spherical shape of the Earth.


Photo: arcspaceInternatinal Library of Children’s Literature (2002)


Photo: arcspace Internatinal Library of Children’s Literature (2002)

The International Library of Children’s Literature is located in the Ueno Park, Tokyo.

The main building, designated as a historic building by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, was constructed in 1906 and expanded in 1929.

The reinforced concrete and glass extension by Tadao Ando adds approximately 5,433 square meters to the historic brick building.


Sketch courtesy Tadao AndoHyogo Prefectural Art Museum & Kobe Waterfront Plaza (2001)


Photo courtesy Tadao Ando Architect & Associates Hyogo Prefectural Art Museum (2001)

The Hyogo Prefectural Museum of Art in the city of Kobe opened in 2001. The sea-facing concrete, stone and glass building, located in Kobe’s newly developed waterfront area, is a symbol of recovery in a city which was devastated by the Great Hanshin Earthquake in 1995.

Ando is a leader in the Hyogo Green Network, a project to plant trees around reconstructed houses in areas hit by the earthquake. Ando and other members of the network have already planted more than 300,000 trees.

While I create buildings, I dream the day will come when children gather and read books under huge magnolia trees, I sometimes feel planting trees is my most important task.

Also included in the exhibition


Photo: arcspaceNaoshima Contemporary Art Museum and Annex

The Tokyo Station Gallery is located in the red-brick Tokyo Station building designed by early-twentieth-century Japanese architect Kingo Tatsuno (1854-1919). The Gallery, which maintain the original red-brick walls, was established in 1988 on the principle of elevating the Station from the status of a mere transport hub to a center offering a glimpse into the cultures of both Japan and the world.


The exhibition will be on view at the Tokyo Station Gallery through May 25, 2003

The exhibition will be on view at the Tokyo Station Gallery through May 25, 2003

After Tokyo the exhibition will travel to Kobe, and Sang-Hi, China.

For me, making architecture is the same as thinking.
/Excerpt from Tadao Ando’s acceptance of the 1995 Pritzker Architecture Prize


CITY Tokyo