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Project Japan: Metabolism Talks... Paperback – October 28, 2011


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 684 pages
  • Publisher: Taschen (October 28, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 3836525089
  • ISBN-13: 978-3836525084
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 1.7 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #340,001 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Rem Koolhaas is a co-founder of the Office for Metropolitan Architecture. Having worked as a journalist and script writer before becoming an architect, in 1978 he published Delirious New York. In 1995, his book S,M,L,XL summarized the work of OMA and established connections of contemporary society and architecture. Amongst many international awards and exhibitions he received the Pritzker Prize (2000) and the Praemium Imperiale (2003).

Hans Ulrich Obrist is the co-director of exhibitions and programmes and director of international projects at the Serpentine Gallery in London.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By nomadic architect on February 28, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A great collected history of a truly radical movement caught into, and trying to steer,a rapidly changing society.
This book is neccessary for architects right now: The thorough archiving and indexing of an avant-garde movement reminds us that architects once fearlessly and courageously embraced the transformational qualities of architecture. It really makes you lament the absence of such a strong contemporary agenda to react to-I can't imagine all those pritzker prize winners actually consolidating their respective intelligence into a cohesive idea like the metabolists did.
It's a massive and dense volume though-I havent been able to finish it yet. It is very well illustrated and is bound to provide inspiration, almost too dense to go through all at once.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By anonymous on February 27, 2012
Format: Paperback
an incredible, ambitious collection of all things metabolist- materials from every possible source from friends, lovers ti colleagues from the past and present. a great handbook for aspiring and practicing architects to see how one generation succeeded in an architecture/ media/ policy/ masterplanning mash up that still holds as one of the most legendary group efforts to this day.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By James Ferguson VINE VOICE on May 17, 2012
Format: Paperback
The Metabolist movement in Japan seemed consigned to the dustbin of history until resurrected in this amply illustrated book that gives the movement a greater width and breadth. Not surprising to see Rem Koolhaas behind the project, as his work owes a substantial debt to this movement. More importantly, Koolhaas provides wonderful interviews and insights on its leading proponents, including the dapper Kisho Kurokawa, who gave us such novel projects as the Nagakin Capsule Tower, downsizing units to less than 10 square meters (100 square feet).

Of course, a movement like this could have only been spawned in Japan, which was looking for new ways to deal with the post-war housing shortage. Kenzo Tange was the godfather of the movement, and would have a major impact on international architectural design. The movement also gave us Arata Isozaki and Fumihiko Maki, among other leading architects. While the designs looked very futuristic at the time, they were based on traditional planning principles. I would have liked to see a bigger format like Taschen has done on other topics, but the wealth of material will reward those interested in Metabolism.
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By Ko Wibowo on September 26, 2014
Format: Paperback
What a thorough survey of metabolist movement! Without this book, we will only know metabolist only at the surface. This book provides insights into how the movement came into being supported by Japanese economic rise in 70s and the tabula rasa as the result of Japan losing WWII. More importantly it gives information about the unselfish leadership of Kenzo Tange who allowed a democratic environment within the group.
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By Camilo on May 7, 2014
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Metabolism Talks is a compilation recommended for any one with interest on Architecture, Urbanism or History, being student or professional.
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Going into this book I knew very little about the metabolist movement in architecture. I found that the format of quickly alternating interviews and history pieces kept me engaged and interested as a reader. Well-chosen photos and graphics illustrate the text tastefully. The interviews with metabolist architects were great, and managed to not only record the important history and facts about metabolist architecture, but also gave insight into the personal lives, career development, and group dynamic of these Japanese architects who all contributed to the movement in different ways.

As a designer I can relate to the metabolist's desire for architecture to play a role in solving the many complex problems in a rapidly changing world. Only by working together to advance the architecture profession in Japan were they able to achieve some level of success. With the focus today so much on the individuality of each famous designer, it is refreshing to read about this not-so-distant movement that happened because of a group of individuals working toward a common way of thinking. I have not come across any other books that describe the process of a movement taking shape quite like this book does. It goes to great lengths to provide as many viewpoints as possible from the people who were there when it happened. It is an architecture book that is also about how these architects interacted with their world to promote their vision.

It feels like a large amount of respect and care went into the making of this book. Rem Koolhaas and Hans Ulrich Obrist clearly knew that the metabolist movement in architecture has tremendous historical importance and a serious lack of recorded historical documentation. They did a wonderful job compiling and presenting all the information in this book!
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By Ivana on March 22, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Si sos estudiante de arquitectura y amante de Japón, como yo, este libro es super recomendable para conocer un poco más sobre el metabolismo japonés!!
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By Stephen Di Trolio- on January 21, 2013
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Such a comprehensive look at the movement. Also the book is one of the most beautiful books I have bought.
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