When Kazuyo Sejima – one part of the cutting-edge architecture studio SANAA – takes on a new project, people take notice. And rightly so. The duo, whose renown was sealed last year when they were named recipients of the 2010 Pritzker, are perhaps one of the most sought-after Japanese architects, both in Japan and abroad.
For her latest project, Sejima has designed a community workshop space in the Shibaura district of Tokyo. Having been subject to massive redevelopment since the 1990s, the area, consisting largely of office buildings, has begun to take on a new face in recent years, attracting young professionals as well as families. Shibaura House, the 7-story, largely translucent structure, will attempt to position itself as a hub for the next step of creative dialogue. Slated to open in July of 2011, Shibaura House will have a rotating roster of speakers, as well as various events, all spanning the genres of business and social issues to art, design and lifestyle.
The project was commissioned by Kohkoku Seihan, a printing/publishing services company who has also been operating a series of workshops for kids. Shibaura House is presumably a step towards developing their non-profit arm, which was spun-out in 2010.