from Aoyama Technical College to Subway Station Iidabashi Ventilation Tower

      from "hiding" ornament(haribote) architecture to "transparent " decoration

On the right side there is a square board polished like a mirror.
On the left side there is a window like a controller.
The spherically dressed iron plate underneath is impressive. All the parts of this "suit" shines brightly.

 Indeed Aoyama Technical College (1990)=Gundam is an "ornamental -haribote" architecture.
However, when you stand in front of the building for real, you are to face with a primary colored brightness still kept inspite of the enduring years, though from what material it is made of is unknown. Unexpectedly it had much volume and the brilliant presence.
 However the figure comes from the imaginary form decorating the building.The image is composed of the personal taste and it is far from the logical shelter composed of the architectural components.Appearance of this kind of project may prove the departure from the previous concept of architecture.
What is more it has gone so far as resembling the buildings of the Disneyland. It is a building appearing in the picture books, an imaginary building, a very well made ornamental-haribote architecture.

Then how about the subway station Iidabashi Oedo line(2001)?
Here the personal image is reflected as well. But it is not "ornamental-haribote". How come?

Isn,t it so that the decorative parts are not hiding the building itself?
Then what is an "ornamental-haribote" architecture? And how can the existance of architecture be explained?

 Let,s prepare ourselves to grasp the situation.Here,
I propose to depict architecture as the axis with two imaginary poles which appear when inspecting the building.
At one pole let me place the "Disneyland"(1983) and on the other the "Sendai Mediatheque"(2001)

 What I had found out about these two projects is as follows. In the "Tokyo Disneyland" the surface figure and design seek no more than the truth depicted by the fairy tales. As a result it is covered with the pictures of fairy tales as if to hide that the building is squared.
 In comparison, the "Sendai Mediatheque" tries not to decorate and add unnecessary things. What is more it avoids hiding to the limit and tries to show as much as possible instead. Such is the opened exterior glass curtainwall. Unbelievablly such installations as the staircase,the airconditioning duct and the elevator are set inside the tube like columns and are visible. Such construction was made possible since the column was made of latticed tube looking as if the column "had turned out to be just a skeleton of the body".

 Here I,m likely to say that in the pole represented by "Sendai Mediatheque" it is simplifying the components of architecture, the "material" itself. The utilized "material" is naked utmost and visible. There are no ornaments and decorative parts at all. It is aimed that all the "materials",the composing units of the building are visible and lived and placed as they are seen composing the whole.
Vice versa, in the "Disneyland " the" material" to be seen is used as surface materials to the most and it is concentrated on the pattern of the "material " of the surface.The "material" is used as covering the surface and that the structure and components of architecture are hidden consequently becoming a black box.

 In this respect looking at the subway station Iidabashi Ooedo line ventilation tower whose design has developed from Aoyama Technical College=Gundam, the covering parts are no longer hiding anything but has transformed into the transparent wing of insect aquiring the structural function. Therefore,it has turned out to become an architecture "showing everything". The decorative wings are no longer that of imagination but are actually the detailed parts of constructing the architecture.You can see this clearly through the photos. Please take a good look at the immense density of the details.

                        The end    011223

The part standing for the wings of insects are made of stainless plate and opaque glass.

The bended steel looks like the earth picture of Nazca .

It is as if the tentacles of the insects are holding the glass.

There is the stainless pipe bended like the vine set over the beam of the entrance.

Makoto Watanabe HP

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