Housing for the Shinjinrui
Otaku Duplex : Site 2
Superflat revelations, Japanese subculture, and why you won't find any Japaneseness without post-war American pop culture.
Drawing a parallel between historical perspective of Japanese art, starting from contemporary manga subculture to traditional arts. The term of Japan's own past pop culture and where we are today. A pessimistic look at the confluence of Edo art and post-war Americanized pop culture. Basically the same consumptive strategy. No contemporary Japanese culture exists without a reinterpretation of Westernization.
The architecture will thusly be a series of contrasts. A reinterpretation of contemporary Japanese (America -> Japan) and American cultural characterizations. Superflat is an inevitable outcome in today's mindset. Breeding grounds for Universal Space.
No camera eye. Nothing profound. No hierarchy = Modernist = everything is enveloped in sameness. No hidden feelings = exposed intention. And in some cases, no humans. Networks and movements. The public face of otaku subculture belies its deep connections to global commercialism. Superflatness is the new cultural export. Less Zen and more motorcycle. Bigness and lightness, while contradictory, epitomize the Superflat, through the loss of the third dimension. Focus on the expressiveness of the building skin. Simple volume, interesting facade. 2.5 dimensionallity. Urban condition is a relation of the figure/ground. This turns into the outside/inside, the green/and much less than green, and translations inbetween.
Louvers, expressive steel, singular open blocks of universal space. The mix of the interior and exterior becomes the engawa. Private spaces - otaku are made uncomfortable by physical communication. Privacy gradients. Closed to the street. High windows restrict at grade interaction. Artwork component is going to be primarily storage. Something will be moveable, mechanical, apprehensive, a remote environment, a Mobile Suit, but not an autonomous thing. Movable space divider apparatus for privatizing the current sphere of influence. Otaku are agoraphobic. The main space may feel too open at times. This requires a mechanical, inhuman intrusion in order to force a more enclosed space.
Materiality is potentially dubious. Not wood, but possible precedent of Kyoto style. Rectangular, but possibly rotationally shifted. Things move to force an interaction that is non-virtual. Human network, mechanical movement and visa versa. Something very introverted. Bufferzone between frontage and units that filters everything like a halftone or Norton anti-virus software. This has now become a clash of the marginal vs. the mainstream. No one but Japan-obsessed foreigners want to live in machiya anymore. Old buildings along the Shirakawa are torn down for medical clinics and love hotels. This neighborhood is a site for transgression. A shift from pre-genbaku old timers into slackers/hackers - a gentrification of a less than desirable kind. Everything will be viewed through a mediating wall of technology/circulation.
This is the machinic anti-machiya.
Program = Duplex housing (loft style) for KSU professors attached to the manga department. Rock/moss garden that is low-maintainence and probably neglected. Art component that is material storage (comic collection) and mechanic space divider.LinksEdoSuperflatMachiyaMobile SuitOtakuShinjinruiShirakawaGenbakuKSUEtc.
No, we still haven't had a single day in studio. Maybe next week?