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Hiroyuki Suzuki

Electa, 2006
209 pages
Mainly colour.
ISBN: 190431434

Edited by Hiroyuki Suzuki, this book offers readers the first complete monograph dedicated to the work of Shuhei Endo. Now only in his forties, Endo has recently received extensive coverage in the international architectural press for the originality of his buildings. Skintecture, Springtecture, Rooftecture are some of the labels he uses to indicate the formal and structural features of his work, mostly made in highly original fashion from corrugated sheet-metal and other explicitly 'cheap' materials. Endo uses the two concepts Renzokutai and Bunyutai, which can be translated as 'continuity' and 'partial sharing' or 'sharing of parts'. The terms express Endo's interest in building components that are quintessentially ambiguous and architectural arrangements whose origin Suzuki explains as the expression of a heterodox relationship between tradition and experiment: 'Traditional architecture in Japan is essentially a series of open spaces: groups of mostly one-storey buildings and gardens are arranged in patterns like the tiles of a mosaic. Traditional Japanese buildings are inseparable from gardens. The main rooms are always laid out so they open onto gardens and their spaces are extended into courtyards, as part of a conception that sees no value in enclosed, isolated spaces. If we return to this tradition we can understand where the originality of Endo's buildings stems from, the origin of the singularity of the agenda he is pursuing, as he twists the 'skin' of his buildings, using sheet steel in rolled layers to define volumes that are never fully enclosed.'


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