The Cleaner Leaner House – The Path Issue

By Jo Phillips

The exploration of home architecture in Japan is treated with the utmost beauty in a new book called The Japanese House Reinvented by Philip Jodidio. This Thames & Hudson publication takes a look inside the country’s most modern buildings built specifically for family and residential life. Philip Jodidio, one of the world’s most respected critics and writers of architecture, composes the fascinating information accompanying an array of striking photographs.

Both exteriors and interiors are explored, with the book taking into account not only aesthetics, but also technology, materials, space and lighting. Jodidio tells us ‘the buildings and furnishings tend to be smaller and sparser than European homes and that the Japanese have a strong connection to nature, expressed in the urban environment through the presence of views of the sky, incoming sunlight and even wind.’

They often believe that their own very dense urban areas are a kind of laboratory for what cities in other parts of the world will develop into; upon how Japanese architecture could influence the West. Tokyo is of course the largest urban centre in the world, and surely the most organized and least subject to extreme poverty or slums.

To find out more about Japanese architecture, check out the article in our ‘Path’ issue.


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