With his experimental buildings, the Tokyo-based architect is creating a new breed of hybrid design. Read Full Article
Sou Fujimoto works in a former factory in Tokyo. Since many of his ideas start out as 3-D concepts, hand-built models are one of the fastest ways for him to visualize and modify his ideas. Photo by: Jeremie Souteyrat
His sketches for the 2013 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion in London were rendered into small paper and foam models, then into assemblages of wooden dowels, and ended up as an enveloping array of delicate steel bars (seen here). He is the youngest architect ever to receive the prestigious commission.
Resembling a jumble of houses piled on top of one another, the dynamic Tokyo Apartment building from 2010 evokes the chaos and crowding of Tokyo. Adding to the complexity, the dwelling units do not correspond to the house forms. Instead, stairs and ladders link individual tenant spaces that span the different pitched-roof volumes. The building sits on a corner site amid a quiet residential neighborhood.
In 2008, Fujimoto designed House N, one of his first commissions, for his in-laws.
House NA from 2011 has glass walls and a steel structural frame containing a matrix of tiny rectangular rooms and outdoor terraces, each on a separate floor level linked by stairs, ladders, or movable steps. Hemmed in by neighboring homes on three sides and a narrow street in front, the house belongs to a couple clearly at ease with Tokyo’s urban condition.
“I thought it would be nice to make a city like architecture or architecture like a city.” —Sou Fujimoto