Ryue Nishizawa has used plants, stairs and windows to create the illusion of privacy and space in this tall, narrow urban home.
Icon 116 is devoted to Japan. Nearly two years after the earthquake and tsunami that devastated the north of the country in March 2011, we revisit the disaster areas where architects and designers, including Toyo Ito’s KISYN group, are now helping to rebuild local communities. On the cover is Kengo Kuma, the master of “deceptive minimalism”, and we also talk to rising stars Takram Design Engineering.
A tale of postwar visionaries has a lot to say to post-earthquake Japan, says Julian Worrall.
What were the cultural highlights of 2011? Icon asks nine international critics, curators and experts to select their half-dozen stand-out moments in architecture, design and art.
Iwan Baan’s year in buildings (Photographic highlights from 190,000 miles of air travel) Take a nail, hammer this magazine into the wall and hang it up as a calendar.
Koji Tsutsui’s mountainside retreat is a flexible arrangement of larch-clad rooms “plugged in” to a winding internal alleyway.
The facade of Emmanuelle Moureaux’s design for a Tokyo bank layers planes of colour to draw the eye up from a nondescript suburban street.
The earthquake on 11 March revealed how easily the fragile networks of buildings, communications and people that make up the modern city can be pulled apart. Now, in the Japanese capital, ghostly symbols warn of electricity shortages and the street lights and neon signs seldom come on.
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