A House for Now


A week-long workshop was organized for students from Tower Hamlets College. The event commenced with a visit to the Barbican to see the Japanese Houses exhibition. I had prepared a brief for the students, instructing them to carefully observe all the houses featured in the exhibition. During their visit, they met with one of the curators who explained how all the houses were designed in response to specific conditions, such as political, cultural, or direct representations of clients' personalities. These factors played a crucial role in informing the architecture of the houses. The purpose of this activity was to encourage the students to think about the relationship between context, client and architect.

The brief also required the students to watch the Moriyama House film and reflect on how the architect, Ryue Nishizawa, designed a house to reflect and complement the personality of its inhabitant, Yasuo Moriyama, an enigmatic urban hermit. By the end of the first day, each student was assigned a fictional character with a specific personality, tastes, histories, and needs. Using mood boards, models, sketch ideas, and final drawings, they each designed a house for their character.