Friday, September 11, 2009

modern japanese architecture and ma

nazara at + blog has created a modern japanese architecture facebook page. wonderful!
these pictures are from the facebook page (the nishizawa and sejima (SANAA) section.)
hello sandwich also featured pictures and really comprehensive links to 

i recently received my copy of SANAA Houses from amazon. 
i really, really like SANAA's houses. 
and i am totally enthralled with the book. the houses and pictures are of course incredible.
but the essays at the back are also highly informative and engaging, i found them really...exciting.

i highly recommend this book to anyone interested in modern japanese 
architecture and design, and the influence of deeply japanese concepts 
such as mono no aware (also see yasujiro ozu films), emptiness, shadows and darkness, and ma:

ma (space, emptiness, interval, the experience of interdependence of space and time).
from the wiki entry on maTaoist philosopher Lao Tse wrote extensively on the 
concept of ma including his poem The Uses of Not :

Thirty spokes meet in the hub,
but the empty space between them
is the essence of the wheel.
Pots are formed from clay,
but the empty space between it
is the essence of the pot.
Walls with windows and doors form the house,
but the empty space within it
is the essence of the house.[4]
see this series of four films on the subject of ma by video artist takahiko iimura.
one of which uses the zen garden of ryoanji to interpret ma.
ma is also a important in the sparse rhythym of traditional japanese music. this wikipedia entry summarises it well.
(and as a nice little segue there, i have added a music player to the sidebar, 
as part of 'on my record player'. at the moment it is playing 
minimum chips 'cold afternoon' from the album sound asleep. beautiful music...)

i would like a bathroom in the garden like this


  1. i love SANAA, kazuyo Sejima is amazing, it must be wonderful living in a house designed by her.

  2. Oh. These pictures are so lovely. I wish my interior could look like this !!

  3. hi nuishu and marion! i know, to live in a sejima/nishizawa house, is to be a little bit closer to heaven?

  4. This is breath taking!!! Oh I am loving this post! Thank you for sharing.

  5. That bathroom is awesome! And I love the idea of having a desk to work outdoors!

  6. hi yoli and cookie cutter, am glad you are liking it:) the outdoor places for functions like a desk and a bathroom, simply great.

  7. i'm really loving your japanese architecture posts.
    more please :)

  8. oh, i love this post, thanks for sharing!

  9. This is an absolute stunning way to live with the nature. Beautiful and clever.

  10. :) I have always wanted that book :) And thank you for your link to Hello Sandwich too sweet girl! xxx

  11. wow, very good post. with a lot of information. you do things so good :)

  12. hi mary, renilde, karin, ebony and nazara! thanks a lot for your comments. i will do my best to do some more then:) (i hope you get to add the book to your library someday ebony:)

  13. love that too, sooo fresh and white and all the plants so beautiful colors!

  14. I love the idea of having a desk to work outdoors!
    the plants so beautiful colors! Thanks for pictures..

  15. Anonymous21:48

    I am always amazed at the poetry that can be accomplished in tiny spaces