Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Fashion in Architecture: Shigeru Ban

Shigeru Ban, also known as the "paper architect", is one of the most famous, contemporary Japanese architects. He is known to have a highly modern and structuralist approach to architecture, but unlike other contemporary architects, Shigeru Ban's buildings are quite simplistic. His primary building materials are paper and cardboard. In 1995, Shigeru Ban worked with the UNHCR (The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) in Rwanda to create temporary refugee shelters out of paper tubes. These lasted longer than the previous shelters made out of aluminum.

image source: design boom

Shigeru Ban's most famous building is the "Curtain Wall House" (pictured above), where the building lacks walls and is instead replaced by huge, white curtains. His usage of fabric for most of the exterior of the home shows how an element of fashion can transform a typical, modern home into a critically-acclaimed and unique piece of art.

Currently, Ban is visiting universities across the United States to lecture about "green" architecture and sustainable growth.

source: architecture720, cornell

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