Kengo Kuma, a renowned Japanese Architect has lately designed the “Eiko Kadono Children’s Literature Museum” in Tokyo which is scheduled to open in 2023. He is also the designer of the Japan National Stadium in Tokyo which has been built for the 2020 Summer Olympics. He virtuously quoted that “You could say that my aim is ‘to recover the place’. The place is a result of nature and time; this is the most important aspect. I think my architecture is some kind of frame of nature. With it, we can experience nature more deeply and more intimately. Transparency is a characteristic of Japanese architecture; I try to use light and natural materials to get a new kind of transparency.” And his designs are genuinely an interpretation of his beliefs in Japanese Architecture, initiating from essential building materials for amalgamation of design challenges. Besides that, he is also known for his bountiful writings.

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Magnificent view – Eiko Kadono Children’s Literature Museum_©

Project Particulars

The project is entitled “Eiko Kadono Children’s Literature Museum”, designed by Kengo Kuma and associates situated at Edogawa city, Tokyo, Japan. The innovative designer’s team involves Minoru Yokoo, Kenji Miyahara, Keisuke Narisawa, Rina Suzuki, Kohyoh Yang, Shiho Yoo, Hugo Poveda, Sayaka Shimizu, and the structure is designed by Ejiri Engineers. The attractive and pacific landscape gardening is done by Cross-Point together with the entire project is disseminated across 1,600 square meters (17,220 square feet) urban spread.

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Amazing aesthetics designed over the hill of Nagisa Park_©

Design Approach

The Kengo Kuma & Associates designed the “Eiko Kadono Children’s Literature Museum” on the name of Eiko Kadono, an imaginative Japanese children’s book author who was awarded Hans Christian Andersen Author Award 2018. Eiko Kadono’s most notable work is known for Kiki’s Delivery Service, which was promulgated in 1985 and was elucidated into Studio Ghibli‘s well-known film “adaptation” directed by Hayao Miyazaki in the year 1989.

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The museum is designed with obeisance to the miniature houses displayed in her stories. The rooftop is creating a balance comprehensively over the site with its prolonging edges. And the approach behind the park was to create a recreational space depicting the townscape of the book, “Kiki’s Delivery Service.” The Nagisa Park in Edowaga city is designed for experiencing her world of stories where the children can loosen themselves to explore & spend their leisure time with amusement. However, reading rooms are also designed along with the imitation of the studio of Eiko Kadono for pragmatic & enhanced impression.

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Notable author- Eiko Kadono_©
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Eiko Kadono’s fantasy novel series Kiki’s Delivery Service is getting a new stage musical adaptation_©×630.jpg

Philosophy & Strategies

The flower-shaped museum is designed on hills, depicted with frolicsomeness in the form & shades of the structure. The colors exerted are light pink and white, which makes the museum lively along with the coalescence of landscape in the surroundings. The design involves a persuasive & effective approach towards the children. As the children are known for their creative minds, so is the museum designed with influential aspects from the spirited fictional stories by the author Eiko Kadono. The arena created by the architect is depicting the aura of the mythical city exemplified in the author’s pictorial stories. From architectural elements to the comprehensive strategies of the form of units placed, all are concerning the fictional environment.

The Museum bequeaths honor to the author especially with its impact on children. The organic environs are genuinely portraying the town where the movie was shot in reality depicting its true character that inspires & creates a sense of correlation among the visitors and the museum. The idea of Kengo Kuma was to adapt gestures from the actual story and movie thereby featuring the pavilion likely structure along with tiny houses of the stories of Kadono.

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As virtuously quoted by Kengo Kuma that, “The criteria for architecture after the tsunami is humbleness.” He believed in the intimacy of Architecture with nature & equilibrium between the latter. The roof of the museum appears to be depicting the design of a blossoming flower with imparting efflorescence. The strawberry-coloured interiors are mostly preferred by him and known to be his favoured shades. The basic idea behind the practicality of this tone is its reflection property, therefore it reflecting the clothes and glasses of the author, creating a distinct ambience inside the museum. Additionally, the projection mapping is also used to accustom and embellish plans on the walls for amusement.

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Inclusive & all-embracing Design_©

Henceforth, the museum is inclusive & all-embracing waiting for its deliberations to fulfill the motive of cheerfulness among the children visiting it. The design will bring exhilaration and a sense of cohesiveness will undoubtedly arise among the visitors. Kengo Kuma iterated that, “I thought that children nowadays are used to being given things and have fewer opportunities to find things on their own and enjoy them. I hope they read books here and discover the joy of reading and the amplitude of words.”

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The fitting quote by Kengo Kuma_©

The notion behind the Children’s Literature Museum is to replenish the curiosity among the children of stories, facts, narrations, movies, fiction, and tales to explore the world with no fears in the coming time with their best possible creative minds. Likewise, Young Architects need to exercise designs for children as they are always the treads for a better future.

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Srajati is an explorer with a bundle of nerves; Architecture to her is a paradigm of service & opinions are her ruling passion. A scribbler exploring endless stories believes in sharing them with the world around to connect architecture with all that is.