September 26, 2022

I Fall For Art

Photos by Noritaka Minami Document the Famed Nakagin Capsule Tower Prior to Demolition


#Noritaka Minami

September 21, 2022

Grace Ebert

“B1004” (2011). All images © Noritaka Minami, shared with authorization

An icon of Japanese Metabolism, the Nakagin Capsule Tower stood in the Ginza neighborhood of Tokyo from 1972 right until it was demolished previously this year. Conceived by the famed designer Kisho Kurokawa, the creating highlighted two central concrete towers, with 140 personal pods slotted into the key constructions. A circular window allowed light into the tiny modules, which were made with the intention that they could be eradicated and changed as essential.

This overall flexibility was an necessary part of Metabolist architecture, which fused the notion of megastructures with natural advancement, indicating quite a few of the types of the period embraced prefabrication for its means to “regenerate” each individual couple a long time. Regrettably for the Nakagain Capsule Tower, while, structural issues prevented the pods from staying effortlessly swapped, and the building fell quickly into a condition of disrepair.


“Facade” (2010)

Until eventually it was disassembled again in April, the complex served as a beacon of the pre-war movement that commenced in the 1960s and was just one of the number of remaining structures of its kind—Kurokawa’s likewise futuristic Capsule Hosue K is even now in use in Nagano woods. Now, some of the tower’s capsules are becoming shipped to museums and establishments or transformed into single lodging, and 1 enterprise is also operating to digitally maintain the constructing.

Artist Noritaka Minami documented the complex prior to demolition, and his photographs of the facade and residential models are on view this 7 days as component of 1972/Accumulations at MAS Context Reading Area in Chicago. Framing the dwelling quarters from the same angle, the photos look at the structural similarities and individual outcomes of just about every room. The photos, most of which Minami took concerning 2010 and 2021, capture a sure intimacy in the austere uniformity and preserve what when was an architectural innovation.

1972/Accumulations runs from September 22 to December 8. See extra of the sequence on Minami’s web site


“A503” (2017)

“Artificial Land” (2021)

“A703” (2017)

“B605” (2021)

“B807” (2021)

“B702” (2012)

“A905” (2018)

#Noritaka Minami


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