Japanese architecture is all about minimal buildings, and Florian Busch Architects worked on a space measuring only 50 square metres in Kyoto, transforming it into a bar and gallery which is a continuous space on 8 levels.
Florian Busch Architects’building is located in the Pontocho district west of the Kamo River, a district famous for its nightlife, featuring numerous geishas’ houses (okiya) and teahouses (ochaya), and for its ancient architecture and kabuki theatre. The neighbourhood looks like a horizontal maze to visitors, with an urban fabric made up primarily of small, low houses, and the architects respond with a building called K8 which offers an entirely vertical experience. The variation in the internal spaces corresponds to a dynamic, continually evolving façade.
The sense of motion is created by the strips of wood covering the façade, which are gradually rotated. When we look at the building from outside, its unusual façade prevents us from perceiving the 8 floors it is made up of or the depth of the site. When we move from one end of the façade towards the interior and then to the other side, the building looks like a solid volume that gradually reveals its transparency in the middle, then closes again in an eternal motion with a rhythm dictated by the passer-by’s speed.
Project: Florian Busch Architects
Project Team: Florian Busch, Sachiko Miyazaki, Suguru Takahashi, Akira Miyamoto, Antoine Vaxelaire, Renee Reder, Oliver Pershav, Katie Colford (intern), Shiori Sageshima (intern), Anne-Marlene Rüede (intern), Kayo Nakamura (intern)
Structural engineering: OAK (Masato Araya, Tomonori Kawata)
Contractor: Mugishima Corp.
Location: Kyoto, Giappone
Images courtesy of Florian Busch Architects, copyright by Nacasa & Partners inc.