Saturday, 24 August 2013

Shigaru Ban... More Amazing Cardboard Structures

I was so impressed by the Christchurch Cardboard Cathedral,
how it was built and Shigaru Ban the architect who designed it
that I had to have a closer look at him and his work

Born in 1957 in Toyko Japan he studied at the Southern California
Institute of Architecture then Cooper Union's School of Architecture
where he studied under John Hejduk who was part of the New York Five.
From Hedjuk Ban gained an interest in 'architectronic poetics' or the
creation of three dimensional poetry.

Ban continued to explore basic geometric
elements which led him into creating unique structural solutions

Home for Shigaru Ban is inside an airplane. He has an apartment in
Paris where he spends two weeks each month and one,
that he designed, almost in the
middle of Tokyo inside a small forest so it's like a tree house! 
When he travels he takes a sketchbook and a novel to read...
The most useful product invented?.. Of course it's a pencil

Drawing of City Art and Cultural Center...
Odawara, Kanagawa, 2013

In a talk Ban gave at TEDxTokyo... Ban said he was disappointed
in his profession... Architecture has lost its way... 'We are working
for privileged people, for rich people, for governments and
developers. They have money and power, and those are
invisible, so they hire us to visualize their power and money by
making monuments of architecture.'

 Haesley Nine Bridges Golf Clubhouse...
Korea, 2010... and below

Ban instead has committed
himself to creating buildings that can truly be useful - whether
or not they're permanent fixtures on the horizon.

Apol Office Building, Jakata, Indonesia...
Building in progress

Primarily a Japanese architect he is also a forerunner who embraces
Western and Eastern building forms and most influential from Hejduk
the structure of architectural systems.
He is now most famous for his work with
paper and cardboard tubing as materials for building construction
which he is attracted to because it is low-cost, recyclable, low-tech
and replaceable. Ban is also influenced by humanitarianism, ecological
architecture and sustainability.

Paper and cardboard produce very little waste... His
DIY refugee shelters used in Japan after the Kobe earthquake,
in Turkey and Rwanda are very popular and effective low-cost disaster
relief housing. Ban is an 'Ecological Architect' but can also make
solid claims for being a modernist, a Japanese experimentalist
as well as a rationalist. 

Claude Bernard Footbridge, Paris 2012

He likes transparency, the spherical and the open.

 Odawara, Kanagawa City Art and Cultural Centre 2013

He sums up his philosophy and practice known as
'Paper Architecture' by saying "I don't like waste."

Camper Travelling Pavillion...
Transported with the Volvo Ocean Race 2011...
And photo below

Ban's experimental development of paper tubing structures
began in 1986. He found its structural integrity to be much better
than expected and also available all round the world, most commonly
from manufacturers providing paper tubes for textile factories.

During disaster relief reconstruction the availability and cost of materials
is a major concern. Not so with paper, not being a typical building material...
As he demonstrated in Turkey



More than two million people became homeless
when war broke out in Rwanda
in 1994. The United Nations provided aluminum poles which the
Rwanda's immediately sold... And plastic sheeting.
Trees were then cut down for poles which caused de-forestation.
Ban's low-cast cardboard tubing was introduced... Tested...
And continues to be used

In 1994 in earthquake devastated Kobe, Japan...


Ban designed temporary shelters made
from paper tubing the roof of  waterproof tenting material and
foundations from donated beer crates filed with sandbags.
Community participation made these structures very cheap.

India...Rubble from destroyed buildings was used for the foundations...
Then coated with mud. Beer crates were not available.
The roof... Split bamboo covered with woven cane mats
then plastic sheeting... Most materials re-cycled and 'at hand' sustainable.

Ban's ideology is minimalistic. He uses current
technologies such as waterproofing films, polyurethane and acrylic
paints to improve existing paper materials.

The 'Paper Dome' in 1998 had to pass rigorous construction
codes... Paper tube joists were connected by laminated timber joints
themselves expensive but coupled with paper tubing...
An inexpensive comprehensive budget
The Japanese Pavilion constructed in Hanover, Germany for
Expo 2000 again used paper tubing, waterproofed inside and out
by a coating of polyurethane satisfying extreme weather
conditions and fire protection tests.

The paper tubes are hard to burn because of their high density.
This building was also totally recyclable...
Satisfying Ban's environmentally aware theme.

Christchurch Cardboard Cathedral... Cardboard tubing...

I have enjoyed a fascinating time researching this post.
I think Ban is an amazing architect...
I hope  you enjoy him.

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1 comment:

  1. Thankyou. A great post and a fascinating man with a wonderful philosophy...