1975 – Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum – Kunio Maekawa

The museum building incorporates three functions: a permanent and thematic exhibition function, an exhibit function for art groups and a cultural activities function. In response to the fore-mentioned three required functions, Maekawa established a broad open space in the middle and arranged a the building around it to create his basic composition.

Maekawa also established three themes to guide the design: Providing a “quiet, neutral” backdrop for the exhibited works, maintaining connection with the exterior environment, and using materials and construction methods that ensure optimal durability and thereby ‘produce remarkable results by means of ordinary materials.’” (Excerpt from the “Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum Basic Design Explanation”). On this basis, he worked out the concrete design details.
The critic, Shuichi Kato, wrote: “Tokyo streets have no order. Kunio Mayekawa has consistently tried to produce small urban spaces in this chaotic context, through his arrangement of plural building volumes on the site. The courtyards and voids within the building’s walls perform not only as passageways but as open spaces to breath, relax, meet people, and talk. His buildings, this is to say, contain harmonious urban spaces on a reduced scale.”

Name: Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum│Type: Museum│Architect: Kunio Maekawa │Completed: 1975

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