What's New


Architecture Exhibition


7 June - 30 July

The Embassy of Japan

101-104 Piccadilly, London W1J 7JT
Open weekdays 09:30 - 17:30, closed weekends
Tel: 020 7465 6589
Admission is free, but photo ID is necessary to gain entry to the Embassy.



London Kanazawa, London - Hiroki Kakizoe, 2010 and Kanazawa - Akira Kindo, 2008

Living in this city away from home, we Japanese may ask ourselves, "What is home?" and what is it to be a young Japanese architectural practitioner working in London?

Every two years, the capital is host to the London Festival of Architecture made up of numerous independent events including taking place this year between 19 June and 4 July.

The Embassy of Japan is participating in this year's festival with the cooperation of five Japanese designers, educated and practising architecture in London. Under the theme ie or 'home' they have created houses situated in specific sites in London which represent a symbiosis born of being both Japanese and of the influences of the British educational system and each of each practitioner's professional experiences.

  1. Masaki Kakizoe: Ephemeral Gardens of Light - this project, situated near London Bridge, develops an existing dilapidated building in an industrial landscape and transforms it into a home. It examines the idea of blurring the definitions of 'outside' and 'inside' through the use of garden spaces and the concept of the Japanese 'engawa', or terrace.

  2. Michiko Sumi: Connecting the Opposite Shore - using the idea of a home for three generations to live together yet at the same time maintain each member's independence, this type of home is increasingly common in Japan due to the rise in the ageing population. This project is sited over Regent's Canal between Camden and Regent's Park.

  3. Akira Kindo: Light and Liminal Space - located in the middle and at the top of one of London's most dramatic open spaces, Primrose Hill, this home allows light to penetrate the building all day long. By day, it is place of work open to the public, by night it reverts to being a private home. Having neither a front nor a back, there are no boundaries in this constantly changing space.

  4. Tokuichiro Ooba: Inner Pavilion - one Japanese design concept is shakkei, or 'borrowed view'. Amidst the ruin of a larger, five-storey building in Bethnal Green, borrowing the views created through its porous facade, a small home, studio and convertible exhibition space for artists is constructed, with easy access to the vibrant artist community of Vyner Street.

  5. Hiroki Kakizoe: Embracing the Void - in adopting a derelict 18th-century terraced house, this project explores a place where the boundary between nature, internal space and the city is blurred. Situated on Shoreditch High Street, and lying at a point where the high-rise modern city borders an older, decaying residential area, this project incorporates floating nests and shows how a living area can be in a state of flux.

2 and 3D representations of these projects will be on display at the Embassy.

Addressing city-living in London from a number of trans-national perspectives, this exhibition is an opportunity for audiences, Japanese and otherwise, to discover the nature of 'cultural exchange' through architecture.