Tadao Ando was born in 1941 and he was the Pritzker award winner in 1995.He is very famous for his unparalleled work which is done with sensitive treatment of the natural light, concrete and the engagement with nature. Tadao Ando was raised and based in Osaka Japan. Before embarking on serious architecture training, Tadao Ando worked briefly as a professional boxer and a truck driver. Most of his training was based on the night classes, regular visits to global iconic buildings and apprenticeships. Tadao Ando opened his first office in Osaka in 1969 and he achieved fame very fast within Australia and other parts of the world. In early 1979, the architectural institute of Japan awarded Tadao Ando for his exemplary work in building a row house in Sumiyoshi.
Tadao Ando’s mastery of space, nature and light catapulted him into the global stage in the early 1980s.It was in the latter of this decade that Tadao Ando completed his two most iconic designs that is the Church on the water and that of the light. Tadao and has been playing a very active role in the social contributions projects that are focused on the post-disaster reconstruction and the projects focused on the environmental restoration. This paper focuses mainly on analyzing two projects done by Tadao Ando and come up with the differences and try to discusses what cause the shift.
Theta Dao Ando style
According to the observations that have been made by various researchers it is clear that there are three main characteristics in all works of Tadao Ando and they are;
The geometry that is seen in all his creation is the shapes which Tadao Ando applies to develop habitable spaces. The nature witnessed refers to usage of trees, ponds, light, courtyards among other in all his creations and developing a pleasant stability between the elements and the structure mentioned above. Tadao Ando has signature substance which he uses in all buildings mainly reinforced concrete other than the use of glass, steel and wood.
The Laureate biography 1995 by Tadao Ando shows how Tadao uses watertight and smooth shuttering to generate concrete slabs. Thus, by using these two ideas the end result is mainly centered on the molds instead of the mix itself. The shuttering used is usually seized together by bolts which creates an imprinted hole that can be clearly seen on the slabs
This housed was mainly constructed as a residential house for three families i.e. a newlywed family together with their parents. Which saw each family settling on an individual floor? The house is located in Satagaya in Japan. The chief concept which was behind the design of this house was to build a house that was able to keep each house and family independent. The whole house is made up of 12m cube at the middle of the site and there is a curved wall close to the entrance.
The owner of the house being an architect offered Tadao Ando an opportunity to design for him this particular residential building. By respecting the conditions, he was given in the brief of this house; Tadao designed the house to have independent interiors, which was to offer privacy from each other but the outcome was a combined structure from the outside.
The house is constructed of reinforced concrete which is made around a steel frame and all the floor surfaces in this house are finished with treated wood. Key is also another key construction material in this house. The glass is mainly used in making windows and skylights to direct light into the structure.The usage of glass as a construction material in this house was due to the pleasant appearance of the glass and the fact that glass is among the lightweight construction material.
The image above shows the frontage of Kidosaki along the street as it bends inwardly towards the entrance. The external structural wall serves as an edge which separates the household from the hectic environs of Tokyo, but, all at once brings together the exterior and the interior of the house. However, the house shows likeliness to a bunker, the interiors of this building are simple, interesting and modern.
The figure above shows the architectural drawings for Kidosaki house. They clearly show that as one goes into the curved wall, can be able to see two flights of stairs, one of them leads to the first level while another one leads to the second level. Furthermore, there is staircase leading to the individual floor to a shared area immediately after the staircase. Inside the living space, the center cube is enclosed by court yards on each side and the different apertures are placed to face the court yards.
The Court yards and the Apertures
The courtyard built in this house are very essential in enhancing the cohesively of the entire house. Tadao got his motivation from the courtyards in the traditional town houses within Osaka but the usage of the concrete as the main construction material in this project enabled Tadao Ando to build courtyards on each level of this house which is very challenging thing to achieve by use construction materials locally used in Japan such as wood.
The courtyards as the one shown in the figure above instills nature in all sections of the building through a number of features like openings, windows, fixed glass and the sliding doors. This aperture is different from each other in terms of size and their positioning; this was aimed at eliminating the instances where the sightline of the openings and the windows was to align directly from one room to another. By doing that the level of privacy in the house was enhanced and the attention to the environment was improved. The overtures and the skylights in the roof permits natural light into the house, hence, improving the involvement of nature more.
Practicality and design
Considering different ways which Tadao has pervaded into this house, most people agree that the building is practically functioning. Different architects respected the family’s idea and they allowed them to incorporate them well into the final design of the building. Ando constructed a remote house which was not only isolated from the external surroundings but also shared into portions its resident’s privacy. The owner of Kidosaki house was an architect by profession, it’s clearly believed that Tadao Ando had the taste, unique style and capability style in spite of being self-taught.
The homeowner was much happy regarding to the way the entire house was designed and constructed. When asked why he opted to outsource an architect and yet himself was a trained architect he responds by saying that he was trying to avoid conflicts with relatives concerning how the house was constructed. Being an architect who has fully understood the design principles it would be very hard for him to accept some of the suggestions that were to be given by the other family members
According to the request made by the client’s mother, some of the interiors in this house were painted white while other interiors were left to indicate the raw concrete material. The uniqueness style of Tadao Ando portrays tranquility as shown by the different features like the pillars, openings in a manner that natural lights compliment them.
The irritating exteriors of the Kidosaki house can be clearly noted Tadao Ando’s work. In spite of some of the arguments that the raw concrete is not suitable for building a house intended for a family or any other kind of residence. Once one is in Kidosaki House it is very clear what the main goal the architect intended to achieve was and that the house is very suitable for residence.
Tadao created a sense of curiosity and a sense of mystery with the design and construction of the Kidosaki house whereby he created a brutal looking appearance on the outside of the building but at the same time gave a feeling of warmth in the inside of the house. There is a very sharp contrast between the inside and the outside of the house. The figure below is a sketch of the interiors.
This house features two parallel concrete rectangles which confines at a point. The form is precisely covered by the slanting surface of the park and it became a compositional additional to the national park area it is constructed keenly in order to ensure that it does not disturb in any way the existing nature, the building responds to the neighborhood ecosystem while this solves more general environment via reflective penetration of light.
The northern section of the building comprises of two-storey which have a double volume living room, dining room, and a kitchen on the firsts level of the building with a master bedroom which is an unsuited and one study room on the next floor. The southern mass contains six bedrooms for the kids and they are aligned in a line, there is a lobby and a bathroom connecting the two spaces
Exterior stairs to the courtyard as illustrated in the image below.Tadao made use of the space that was between the rectangles to illustrate the environment. This space shows the courtyard which shades over the contours to the natural slope of the land.
A broad staircase comes after the inclined surface into the surrounding environs which allow the light to penetrate via the flowers to the lower courtyard. The independent space stands for the serene nature that is destined by the structures.
Four years later, Tadao Ando designed another additional construction to the compound. The addition was constructed to the northern side of the old structures; the new cave-like space is positioned on the slope piece of land. The research includes bold curve in contrast to the straight organization which initiates a new approach.
Separated from the courtyard and the initial design, the space between the addition construction and the initial design lets nature to take the forms away from each other. The curved wall stretches outside from the house to define the outside space, at the same time; a patch of beautiful grass makes its way between the structures. Same way, to add value and beauty to the interiors, the ceiling plane layer along the curved wall is removed, nevertheless, the non-linear patterns of light greatly differs from that of the initial building.
The main concept which was guiding the design and construction of Kidosaki house was to maintain the independence of each family and each house considering that the house was to accommodate three families and each of them needs its privacy. The entire hose was made up of a cube, 12 meters per side, in the center of the plot and a curved wall in front near the entrance. . The homeowner was much happy regarding to the way the entire house was designed and constructed. When asked why he opted to outsource an architect and yet himself was a trained architect he responds by saying that he was trying to avoid conflicts with relatives concerning how the house was constructed. Being an architect who has fully understood the design principles it would be very hard for him to accept some of the suggestions that were to be given by the other family members
while the main concept for the construction of Koshino house was design and construct a house which arranged into two parallel bodies that are joined by an underground passage that defines a central courtyard. The body contains a shorter living room having a double volume, at the same time the longest wing contains a number of bedrooms for children that are arranged in a line. Also in it there is a study room which is in form of a crescent, adjacent to the living room, which was added later. This sharply contradicted the composite bodies that were already in existence.
Koshino House, an element which was significant to note was that there were no decorating features. An observation that is offered by the many apertures along with the shadows cast by the few apertures and the lights, and the smoothness of the wall which are mixed and operates as if they are the only ornamentation.
In this project, almost all walls were constructed of natural concrete and free from of beautification and their original form. Tadao Ando opted to use the smooth concrete because it was the only way available to allow wind and light inside the walls to create some sense of serenity and at the same time wide open spaces. Another reason for the use of smooth concrete was due to the technological and industrialization resources which the architect was accessible to.
Also glass was widely used in the construction of this house glass was used in making are windows through the house. The reason behind the use of glass was to allow light to pass through and to offer a wide scene of the surrounding environment.
On the other hand, the Kidosaki house that was constructed with the same architect was constructed by concrete which was having ornaments added concrete, made around with steel frame and the floor is finished with treated wood. The house makes application of glass as its other key elements, inserting fixed glass windows and the skylights to the channels of light and nature. some of the interiors in this house were painted white while other interiors were left to indicate the raw concrete material. The uniqueness style of Tadao Ando portrays tranquility as shown by the different features like the pillars, openings in a manner that natural lights compliment them.
the sudden shift in the use of materials can be attributed to the fast movements that were witnessed in architecture in 1980s.Due to the fast advancement of technology that was witnessed in various parts of the world in 1970s and 1980s there was also fast changes that were witnessed in various industries whereby architecture was one of them.
The external wall of the structure acts as edge which separates the household from the hectic environs of Tokyo but all at once brings together the exterior and the interior of the house. Though the building shows likeliness to a bunker, the interiors of this building are simple, interesting and modern. The curved wall stretches outside from the house to define the outside space, at the same time; a patch of beautiful grass makes its way between the structures. Same way, to add value and beauty to the interiors, the ceiling plane layer along the curved wall is removed, nevertheless, the non-linear patterns of light greatly differs from that of the initial building on the other hand Koshino House features two parallel concrete rectangles which meet at a point.
The form is precisely covered by the slanting surface of the park and it became an additional construction to the national park landscape’s it is placed keenly in order to ensure that it does not disturb in any way the existing nature, the building responds to the neighborhood ecosystem whereas the concrete solves more general environment via a reflective penetration of light. A fast shift on how the various courtyards and apertures have been used in this building can be attributed to the variation of the nature of the sites where the two houses were constructed.
In conclusion it is clear that all Tadao Ando projects have main characteristics i.e. geometry, nature and substance. For the two above analyzed projects there are many similarities which are derived by the style of design which Tadao Ando like to use for instance; the shapes which Tadao Ando applies to develop habitable spaces. The nature witnessed refers to usage of trees, ponds, light, courtyards among other in all his creations and developing a pleasant stability between the elements and the structure mentioned above. Tadao Ando has signature substance which he uses in all buildings mainly reinforced concrete other than the use of glass, steel and wood.
On the other hand, there are also key differences that have been noted in the way the two houses were designed how site has been planned, the various materials that have been used in construction, the context of the two projects and how they relate with the surroundings, the spaces of the buildings and culture and theory of the architects applied in the two projects, this can be attributed in the fast movements that were witnessed in the 1970s and 1980s when the two houses were constructed.
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