Once a “ghost town” in the shadow of Nihonbashi’s neon glare, Bakurocho is enjoying a creative revival inspired by its Edo-era craft heritage. Danielle Demetriou visited the area for our latest issue – Keith Ng's images, featured here, accompany the article
The hostess bars of Tokyo’s hedonistic Shinjuku district have an unlikely neighbour: Amorphe’s vast, futuristic Buddhist temple
The Japan pavilion’s take on the theme of “Absorbing Modernity” focuses on a period in the 1970s when, with the country rushing into the free-market future, a group of architects turned instead to the vanishing past, says Julian Worrall
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.
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 is a global nomad, restlessly travelling the world documenting new projects by the world’s most distinguished architects. Last year, he clocked up 190,000 air miles shooting projects by Herzog & de Meuron, OMA and Steven Holl, among others. Here are the stories behind Baan’s best shots of 2011.
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.
A flagship store by Jaklitsch/Gardner Architects is the first building to be designed specifically for the fashion label.
Tokyo practice Atelier A5 has taken a pragmatic approach to the city’s restrictive building codes with a ziggurat-style family home that reclaims every available inch of space for the private realm.
Inspired by fog, StudioGreenBlue’s family home in a Tokyo suburb uses perforated metal screens to create varying degrees of privacy and visibility.
It is hard to imagine a more literal image of high density dwelling than this, the Tokyo Apartment–Sou Fujimoto’s latest building.
There's a whole heap of good things in the July icon, issue 085, now in shops - and top of the pile is Sou Fujimoto’s stacked up houses in Tokyo.