kagerou village of temporary pavilions questions forbidden matters in japanese public spaces
 

kagerou village of temporary pavilions questions forbidden matters in japanese public spaces

a group of six architects from germany, france and japan have designed and built the kagerou village, a series of temporary pavilions in the playground of a former kyoto school which is now being used as an art center. the group, which includes tato architects / yo shimada, dot architects, sébastien martinez barat and benjamin lafore, ludwig heimbach, and sven pfeiffer, developed the extemporaneous exhibition as an opportunity to rethink the approach of prohibited matters in japanese public spaces. kagerou village of temporary pavilions questions forbidden matters in japanese public spacesimages by omote nobutada and tato architects

 

 

before building the kagerou village, kagerou meaning mirage, tato architects / yo shimada, dot architects, sébastien martinez barat and benjamin lafore, ludwig heimbach, and sven pfeiffer met to discuss the potentials of the site at a public symposium supervised by architectural historian, taro igarashi. one of the main discussions of the first symposium was on the topic of prohibited matters in japanese public spaces, with the hope of the village to become an opportunity to rethink the approach to public space. ‘in this village that appeared and disappeared like a mirage, the thoughts were not “do not do”,’ explain the architects, ‘instead it became “what if we do?”‘kagerou village of temporary pavilions questions forbidden matters in japanese public spaces

 

 

all pavilions was built over a 5-day period, where dot architects acted as the main supervisor of the construction. the studio participated with a series of slides with different gradients to encourage play and pique children’s curiosity, referencing the successions of traditional roofs on the local kyoto townhouses ‘kyomachiya’, while they also build a sprinkler tower spraying mist to create a cool breeze. at the same time, hiroshi kato creatively took advantage of the site, connecting the sky and ground, by weaving several vinyl tapes across the open sky allowing them to cast striated marks on the ground where he designed humorous benches made of logs and weeds from the schoolyard. the project and natural effects appeal to the visual and auditory senses, and relates to the local context the surrounding area with its long-established local textile wholesalers.kagerou village of temporary pavilions questions forbidden matters in japanese public spaces

 

 

the welcoming folly, by benjamin lafore and sébastien martinez barat, welcomed and guided the visitors with its layered patterns of stripes and curves, created by linear louvers interlocking at 90 degrees angels with curved planes and its shadows. the louvers create patterns varying in size and gradient that engineer the whole structure, resulting in a space that creates an intimate room with complex shadows like fabric layers.

 

 

paying attention to the entrances of the two old school buildings facing each other, yo shimada of tato architects chose to connect the two entrances with a long corridor-like space, by stretching out a 6m x 30m piece of agricultural fabric across the courtyard. beneath the fabric roof, a wooden deck invites to play, where kids can run back and forth, climb the raised path, which allows unobstructed passage between the two parts of the courtyard, touch the fabric and slide down on the other side. the corridor resembles an ‘engawa’, the veranda of a japanese shrine, and invites visitors to take a nap, get-together or play.kagerou village of temporary pavilions questions forbidden matters in japanese public spaces

 

 

in the far corner of the schoolyard, ludwig heimbach joined a series of frames clad in plywood and fabric, creating a complex cabin structure where he intended for the visitors, lovers in particular, to engage in their secret conversations partly sheltered from playful kids. the structure also functions as a drinking fountain for birds. in this way, the pavilion suggests that a public space should include various private areas and possibilities. at the same time, dangerous playground by sven pfeiffer comprises a plywood structure with drilled holes that resembles an inverted bouldering pavilion. on the final day when this porous hideout was disassembled and staked into a pile, it too became a dangerous place to play.

 

 

as the name of pfeiffer’s work dangerous playground suggests, the intention of sven, shimada and dot architects works was to arouse youth and vigor by providing ‘the potential playground danger’ that japanese public spaces generally exclude. the kagerou village became a place that children and adults alike could enjoy, despite the ‘dangers’, allowing them to subjectively raise questions as, ‘if various things are doable, why not?’.

  kagerou village of temporary pavilions questions forbidden matters in japanese public spaces

 

 

 

project info:

 

name: the kagerou village

architect: tato architects / yo shimada, dot architects, sébastien martinez barat and benjamin lafore, ludwig heimbach, and sven pfeiffer

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