New Zen: The Tea-Ceremony Room In Modern Japanese Architecture
by Freeman, Michael
About This Book
New Zen is unique - a collection of the most modern Japanese chashitsu (tea-ceremony rooms). The tea ceremony was established in Japan in the fifteenth century when it became an essential part of culture for the Japanese elite, and in particular for the samurai. Traditionally chashitsu are made up of certain elements - an entrance for the host (sadouguchi), an entrance for the guests (nijiriguchi), tatami mats for the floor, a sunken hearth (ro) for heating the tea, and an alcove (tokonoma) with a flower and painted scroll - they never contain furniture and are used for contemplation.
Since the 1990s Japanese architects and designers have been reinterpreting the chashitsu, creating modern meditative spaces. Their efforts represent some of the most interesting and innovative contemporary interior design and architecture in the world, featuring a vast array of material, including paper, wood, plastic, stone. Aluminium, glass and concrete.
The fascinating introduction explains the history of the tea ceremony, the function of the various elements of the tea ceremony room, and the ritual of the ceremony itself. There is also a useful glossary and plan. Next comes a look at recent architectural projects that interpret the tea-ceremony room in vastly different ways, from treehouse in the countryside in Nagano to a portable example in metal. The work features thirty-seven projects by a range of well-known Japanese architects and designers, including Kengo Kuma, Kisho Kurokawa, Terunobu Fujimori, Takashi Sugimoto, and Shigeru Uchida.
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