⟨ Art ⟩

Home of a Witch

Terunobu Fujimori solo exhibition

Texts / Ron Lam
Translation / Iris Heung

「有如魔女的居所,是出色的建築學家某天發神經造出來的。」這是著名建築師磯崎新對藤森照信作品的形容。

早幾個月到日本的茅野市參觀藤森照信設計的「高過庵」及「飛天泥舟」,才感到磯崎新的形容是何等的貼切。大部份現代日本建築師都追求簡約利落,藤森照信卻特別不守規矩。用草及蒲公英造屋頂,以泥造牆,線條東歪西倒的,「高過庵」及「飛天泥舟」還不是腳踏實地的,要進入室內必須在外面掛把梯子,從地面小心翼翼往上爬。

藤森照信本來是一位建築史、都市歷史的學者,當了多年大學教授,也著書立說,原本只是紙上談兵,但在1991年,他44歲那年,卻突然動手造成設計來。首個發表的作品,正是與「高過庵」及「飛天泥舟」相鄰的神長官守矢史料館。自那時起,藤森照信便已確立了自己獨特的風格——只使用天然素材,甚至以仍然生長的植物作建築材料。他的作品在日本被稱為繩文建築,風格原始,彷彿連結著遠古的歷史。

廣島市現代美術館現正在舉行藤森照信的作品展,以「活用自然的建築及路上觀察」作為主題,除了展示其作品的模型、草稿及照片外,還有他應用在建築物上的植物、牆壁及家具等的樣本等。

“It is like a witch’s home conjured up in the wicked mind of a brilliant architect.” This is how the famous architect Arata Isozaki described the work of Terunobu Fujimori.

A few months ago, I made an actual visit to see Takasugi-an and Flying Mud Boat by Terunobu Fujimori. Only until then did I fully realize how accurate Arata Isozaki’s remark was. While most of the contemporary Japanese architects consider minimalism the ideal of design, Terunobu Fujimori refuses to conform to these rules. Utilising materials like grass and dandelions for rooftop and earth for walls, his designs feature a heavy use of wavy lines. Buildings like Takasugi-an and Flying Mud Boat are not even stood on the ground; to enter the structure, one would need to carefully climb up a ladder.

After establishing himself as a professor and a scholar of modern architectural and urban history, with a few books under his belt, in 1991, in a place close to the current location of Takasugi-an and Flying Mud Boat, Fujimori designed the Jinchokan Moriya Historical Museum. This marked Fujimori’s debut as an architect at the age of 44. Since then, he has continued to make buildings that actively incorporate natural materials and even vegetation. His works are considered as “Jomon architecture” which is rustic and primary with a linkage to ancient history.

Hiroshima MOCA is currently hosting an exhibition themed Terunobu Fujimori: Architecture with Nature, and “ROJO” to introduce Fujimori’s ingenious architectural works through models, photographs, as well as samples from roofs and walls, furniture, and a tearoom.