from small worlds

at 建築倉庫 ARCHI — DEPOT

there’s a sad little trope in hollywood movies involving — usually a woman — architect or architectural assistant, walking along the streets of new york or perhaps chicago or through a crowded concourse, struggling with a large, cumbersome, yet fragile architectural model. the rules dictate that, sooner or later, the model will be upended into the air on collision with a soon to become paramour. all the better if said paramour is bearing a scalding cup of coffee.

architectural models may fascinate because of their resemblance to children’s toys, doll’s houses, or those seaside model villages which were popular last century. for architects however, they represent the development and evolution from idea and concept through to the fabric which constitutes for the urban population the immediate manifestation of culture in the environment.

ARCHI – PRO DEPOT is the only purpose built museum in japan dedicated to the preservation, archiving and display of japanese architectural models. it was founded in 2015 and through the preservation of the physical integrity of models seeks to preserve and disseminate to the public, contemporary architectural culture. it sees its role as providing a platform for architecture and the design philosophies underlying individual works. it offers a unique opportunity of studying three‐dimensional architectural work though the direct comparison of the works of contemporary masters with examples ranging from initial conception through to completed models. the works are displayed on shelves at a height that offers both plan, or bird’s-eye views down to side elevations.

all of the exhibits have their own individual lighting with bright four way LED illumination, and the aisles for visitors to walk between exhibits are dimmed, all of which gives the exhibits a very striking presence.

the museum is located in shinagawa — you can find the main website here

look at the pictures below and you can play ‘guess the architect’ click on any picture to start an interactive lightbox slideshow.

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