Kengo Kuma is a Japanese contemporary architect born in 1954. He is one of the most prominent and prolific Japanese architects, having designed over 100 projects in different countries. Works of Kengo Kuma examine humans’ relationship with nature and reintroduce wood as an ancient and integral material of human experience.
Here are some of the most iconic works by Kengo Kuma and Associates:
Odunpazarı Modern Museum (OMM)
Odunpazarı Modern Museum is located in Eskişehir, Türkiye. The district known as Odunpazarı is a culturally important place as it has traditional Ottoman wooden houses. The wood element is an integral part of the design. The timber design of the museum reflects the history of the city and does not interfere with the texture of the district. The museum aims to promote Turkish art and make a cultural contribution to the city of Eskişehir. It was completed in 2019.
Alberni is a 43-story skyscraper located in Vancouver, Canada. The dynamic silhouette changes when viewed from different angles. It is Kengo Kuma’s first completed residential highrise in North America.
Kadokawa Culture Museum
Designed by Kengo Kuma and Kajima Design, the Kadokawa Culture Museum is a futuristic cultural labyrinth that brings various oppositions together like cities and suburbs or high and low culture. The site where the museum is located is the Musashino Plateau, which was created by the collision of four tectonic plates surrounding Japan. The interior of the museum consists of a unique wood shelving system created by Kuma. It was completed in 2020.
The Exchange is a multi-use civic building located in Sydney, Australia. It is the first building of Kuma in Australia. The building is wrapped in 20,000 meters of light-colored wood that Kuma had arranged. The design gives a ”dynamic and exciting manner” to attract the attention of the passerby. It was completed in 2019.
Japan National Stadium
Japan National Stadium was the centerpiece of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. The opening and closing ceremonies were held in the oval-shaped stadium. The facade consists of overlapping, multi-layered eaves. The inside of each eave is covered with wood to reflect traditional Japanese architecture. It has 68,000 seats.