Japanese houses have to contend with very particular constraints, from tiny plots in crowded urban contexts to ever-present seismic threats. These challenges encourage their architects to explore ideas of stability and ephemerality in various ways, resulting in spaces that are as fascinating as they are idiosyncratic. Their formal innovation and attention to materials, technology and measures to coax in light and air while maintaining domestic privacy make them cutting-edge residences that suggest new ways of being at home.
It includes projects by three Pritzker Prize-winners – Tadao Ando, Shigeru Ban and Kazuyo Sejima – as well as lesser known but no less exciting up-and-coming architects.
Each house is clearly illustrated in crisp colour photographs and plans, and accompanied by texts from Philip Jodidio, the internationally renowned critic. It confirms contemporary Japanese architecture as a substantial force on the international scene.