Datong Theater - Construction Site


Ceramics Park MINO

1996 - 2002

Gifu, Japan

Cultural Facility

Site Area: 173,133 sqm

Building Area: 8,199 sqm

Total Floor Area: 14,466 sqm

Official Web Site

Planned for the purpose of vitalization and world-wide appeal of the local cultural tradition of ceramics and the manufacturing as well as distribution of this key industry, the facilities consist of a Museum of Modern Ceramic Art, and Oribe Square that functions as a Messe.
The site is situated in the corner of a typical provincial suburban hill, the latter eroding by residential developments, golf courses and motorways. The vanishing natural environment and the site's advantage of having views over three small valleys and the urban landscape to the west were taken into consideration when focusing the project's theme on inserting the facility of the required scale into this site all the while preserving as much as possible the nature, lines of ridges and valleys, and local vegetation. A lower profile would be in preference, so the dimension of the facility cannot be perceived from the public road. On that account, the principal facilities-the Messe and the Museum of Modern Ceramic Art-were arranged into a compact layer, half-buried in the largest valley on the south and surrounded by smaller volumes such as Tea-Ceremony House, Ceramics Atelier and Observatory. Access from the parking lot for visitors planned on the northern half of the site would be provided by a bridge and a tunnel. By connecting these walkways, the entire premises turns into a natural park. Incidentally, the bridge would also be a means to keep intact the valley and its wild growth of Magnolia Stellata, a species on the brink of extinction. The Roof Plaza and the pilotis are external spaces available for occasional events. The exterior space is garnished with a landscaped pond and a cascade that are remnants of a stream.