Shigeru Ban – Japan

Japanese architect Shigeru Ban is one of the most innovative architects working today. His consistent design philosophy is to create uniquely free and open space with concrete rationality of structure and construction method.

Shigeru Ban – Japan

It seeks to challenge the existing construction method by using easily obtainable off-the-shelf materials in innovative and unprecedented structural/construction systems. To achieve this goal, SBA dares to go through an empirical trial (-and error) process to consistently incorporate newly discovered technology throughout the design process into its design.

SBA has worked towards developing conceptual clarity through the redefinition of aesthetics, space, materials and structure.

An advocate of “green” and “eco-friendly” architecture, Ban’s work includes the use of unconventional building materials to achieve formal elegance that is efficient, economical and environmentally sound. His more underlying interest and passion is the development of the paper tube as the main building structure. The case study houses named PTS Series are examples of paper tube constructions. There is a series of experimental houses based on the idea of using standardized non-architectural products, namely paper tubes, in an entirely different context. One of the most successful projects of the paper tube architecture is the Japan Pavilion for Hannover Expo 2000. It is a comprehensive compilation of SBA?s PTS technology. While achieving the freedom of the space, the PTS technology reaches the goal to establish a completely new concept of recycling building materials entirely after the building purpose is served.

Established in Tokyo since 1985, he has been teaching at Nihon University since 1996. At once an architect, designer, and scenographer, Shigeru Ban is developing an architectural style which tends to harmonise the various relationships found in each of his realisations, whether “architectonic”, spatial, social or environmental. The Paper Tube Structure (P.T.S) Ñ those cardboard tubes used as structural supports Ñallow Shigeru Ban to be rid of structural constraints and tensions to the benefit of dynamic, flexible spaces. Shigeru uses this material to create specific premises without, for all that, breaking with architectural tradition. In his various projects, we in fact note certain reminiscences of historical architectural features such as the Greek agora used for the Issey Miyake gallery in Tokyo, in 1994, or the reference to the Moderns in the Paper House and the Furniture House. The reference, however, stops there as the rigid, often quadrangular framework, is totally freed in its elevation. The P.T.S module, used both as a structural and furnishing feature, dissolves the rigidity of the ground plan through sinusoidal compositions rendering the space more flowing. The whole can thus open out on to the environment and participate in it as one of its parts. This poor material, used with virtuosity for luxury projects, was also an effective answer to resolve the housing problems of the Kobe earthquake victims, in 1995.


Shigeru Ban as Architect, his Awards, his Competitions and Projects;;

a talk;

at Gallery Ma;



Metz centre pompidou;



Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.