Finally, a reason to go to Starbucks! This dynamic space designed by Kengo Kuma & Associates is located along the main approach to the Dazaifu Tenmangu shrine in Dazaifu, Japan. The shrine dates back to 919 A.D.   and receives around 2,000,000 visitors yearly wishing to bring about personal success through the worship of ‘the God of Examination’.

Courtesy of Kengo Kuma & Associates

Nearly 4.4 km of over 2,000 stick like parts creates an internal space that is dynamic and flowing. The sticks are 6cm square in section and range in length from 1.3-4m. They are woven together in a complicated yet intelligible system which works to trim the complexity expected of joining four such elements. Instead of going for the more brute-force approach of binding all four at a common point, the woven system is reduced to two overlapping ‘weaves’. This building up form the ground with many small parts is a major characteristic of traditional architecture in both Japan and China. This reference and the use of state-of-the-art building technologies acts to bridge and harmonize this modern space for a modern corporation with the traditional japanese buildings and environs amongst which it is located.

Courtesy of Kengo Kuma & Associates

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