Exercise 3: Analysing and Reflecting

In this exercise I have chosen from a list of creative practitioners and will analyse their work and reflect on the process. I have chosen one of the most creative and influential Japanese architects today, Sou Fujimoto. Further research tells me that he is inspired by organic structures such as a nest, cave and forest. His buildings often discuss the relationship between architecture and the built environment, he views both as complementary and by integrating the two can create a much higher quality of design, which then contributes to the spatial quality of a designed space. (Japan House, s.d.)

His first ever project as a young architect was a Children’s Centre for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, Hokkaido, Japan. For the first time, he introduced the concept of ‘openness and protection’ which has been present in most of his later projects. In the Children’s Centre, patients and doctors share the space in a relationship without hierarchy, and, although the whole space is entirely open, it also includes areas that are out of sight and quiet places to escape for privacy. (Japan House, s.d.)

I really like the simplicity in his designs. Looking at his design of the Children’s Centre for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, he has put a lot of thought into the design by off setting the buildings in a way so that the windows don’t overlook each other, creating areas that are out of sight and quiet areas for the patients to escape to for privacy, whilst enabling both the patients and doctors to share the space without showing difference in authority, I imagine this space would create calm and protection and that would help with the whole centre’s ethos. The white buildings could benefit from a softer tone, they are rigid and harsh looking, if a softer colour tone was applied to maybe a few of the buildings it would help.

His first residential project was a single-story house for a family of four with bedrooms, a living room and a Japanese-style room in a semi-open space. The rooms are facing each other but the entries are staggered, so not possible to see into the opposite room. The house design has created private areas, while still imparting a sense of community by reminding the family living there of each other’s presence. (Japan House, s.d.)

T House (2005) | Photo © Daici Ano
Fig.3 T House, Gunma, Japan
T House (2005) | Photo © Daici Ano
Fig.4 T House, Gunma, Japan

His first residential project was interesting, he created a family home with four bedrooms, a living space and a Japanese-style room in a semi open space, where the rooms face each other but the entries are staggered in a way that you can’t see into the opposite room. What a clever design. Especially a great design if you have young children and that way you can give them the access and space needed, they won’t feel hemmed in a small space, whilst having private areas for when they are also needed. My only criticism is the colour of the walls, a very warm honey tone to the wood, but I think it clashes with the flooring, maybe the rooms would look more defined if they had a bold colour scheme to compliment each other which would give them each an individual design but the way the space has been created would not be compromised.

This exercise has taught me to look into more detail of the designs and designers and understand what they are trying to achieve. Even though I may not necessarily agree with some of the designs it helps to carry out research, it will certainly help me make decisions of my own by drawing on ideas from other designers.


Fig.1 & 2 https://www.archdaily.com/8028/children%25e2%2580%2599s-center-for-psychiatric-rehabilitation-sou-fujimoto (accessed 28.6.20)

Fig.4 & 5 https://www.archdaily.com/8876/t-house-sou-fujimoto (accessed 28.6.20)


(Japan House, s.d.) https://www.japanhouselondon.uk/discover/stories/who-is-sou-fujimoto/ (accessed 21.6.20)

(Japan House, s.d.) https://www.japanhouselondon.uk/discover/stories/who-is-sou-fujimoto/ (accessed 21.6.20)

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