Interview with Tadao Ando: Architecture should not be something to be consumed

The first time I saw Tadao Ando, ​​it was hard to believe that he was 80 years old.

In front of the screen, he wore lush brown hair, combed his bangs meticulously, and held a green apple in his hand. Despite heavy dark circles and sunken eye sockets, the eyes are sharp and piercing. He looked at us and talked about a thing that, in his opinion, also has nothing to do with age-youth.

Youth does not seem to have much to do with architecture, but he believes that all his architectural works in his life come from this youthful vigor .

▲ Because of the epidemic, Tadao Ando was connected to the "Youth" in Beijing Station on the global tour exhibition. The green apple in his hand means "youth".

Therefore, when Tadao Ando talks to us about architecture, the focus is often not on architecture.

Architecture is more like a carrier. He is actually talking about how to spend his life through architecture, how to try to influence more people, and how to think about how human power can improve society.

China is one of the most important overseas creative places for Tadao Ando. He mentioned more than once this year that whether it is architecture or art, the center of the world is already shifting to China.

Young people in China are no strangers to Tadao Ando. People are often surprised that when they stand in Tadao Ando's seemingly simple, rough, and effortless concrete building, there is an indescribable spiritual vibration. Tadao Ando uses light, shadow, geometry, and all things in nature to create buildings, like works of art, attracting people to succeed.

Sometimes, this is also a popular one, called "punch-in Tadao Ando."

▲Tadao Ando has created nearly 300 internationally renowned architectural works. He is one of the most active and influential architects in the world. The pictures are in order: the Church of the Water (photographed by Shiratori Mio), the Great Buddha, the Naoshima Building Complex, the Naoshima Museum of Modern Art Annex, the Chichu Art Museum, and the Koshoji Residence.

When Tadao Ando's "Youth" is renewed, Ai Faner hereby exclusively interviews Tadao Ando.

We asked him about his creative youth, the youth of Chinese architecture, the fashion and the future of architecture-these questions about the eternal "green apple" in Tadao Ando and our hearts.

Ai Faner: You once said that youth is a kind of enthusiasm. From adolescence to the present, how have you maintained this kind of enthusiasm?

Tadao Ando: Always be curious and always insist on challenging.


Ai Faner: When challenging construction projects are coming, how would you choose?

Tadao Ando: Whenever I have two choices, I always choose the one that seems more difficult.


▲ From truck drivers, boxers, to self-study architecture, traveling the world alone, visiting the sacred places of dreams, and founding an architectural office, Tadao Ando lost streak, losing streak, and then won the Pritzker Architecture Prize, the highest honor in the world. In the past few years, Tadao Ando had five internal organs removed due to cancer, but he has no plans to retire.

Ai Faner: What is unique about Chinese architecture in your mind compared with other countries?

Tadao Ando: In China, architecture has a powerful sense of power that only a large country has, such as a thorough symmetry expression, an overwhelming sense of scale relative to nature, and a unique sense of form and texture.

For those who build buildings on this land, how to make full use of this feature in their design is a universal theme they need to consider.

China’s には, thoroughness, performance, nature, antagonism, nature, sacredness, loneliness, sense of shape, originality, sense of material, sense of shape, sense of material, sense of nature.

▲In 2002, Tadao Ando started the "China Tour", and then left architectural works in Beijing, Shanghai, Taipei, Suzhou, Hangzhou, and Foshan. His nearly 20 years in China are also the 20 years of rapid development of China's construction industry. The pictures are: Hangzhou Liangzhu Culture and Art Center, Shanghai Poly Grand Theater (Photo: Shigeo Ogawa), Foshan and Art Museum (3-5)

Ai Faner: How do you hope your new creations in various cities in China in recent years will bring to China's current architectural ecology?

Tadao Ando: I hope that these projects can become "growth buildings" as a testament to the richness of buildings.


Ai Faner: What is meant by "building in growth"?

Tadao Ando: It means that the completion of the building does not mean the end, but over time, it has a deeper connection with the local natural environment and can be integrated with people's lives.

Complete したらそれで頂わりというのではない、时间と共により深く報の自然と结びつき.

▲Light and shadow, geometry, and fair-faced concrete are the most common elements in Tadao Ando's architecture, but they will change flexibly according to the characteristics of each region.

Ai Faner: You once said that Japanese architecture has entered an era of "shou" and Chinese architecture is in an era of "fighting". Why?

Tadao Ando: I think that in recent years, art and architecture have been concentrated in China. This is a manifestation of the Chinese society’s transition from a period of intense growth to a period of deepening (evolution) cultural maturity.

Yesterday Jin’s アートと建筑の, China への集の Reason は, Chinese Society, 激しい Growth period から, Evolution = Deepening とするような Culture's maturity periodへと移行しつつあることまの表れれれすつつつあることまの表れれれれれれれれれししつつつつあることまの表れれれれれれれ。

Ai Faner: In other words, Chinese architecture is in the midst of "youth".

Tadao Ando: The challenging spirit of "youth" is beautiful and precious, but it is also accompanied by danger.


Ai Faner: Then how should we deal with the good and bad of architectural "adolescence"?

Tadao Ando: The important thing is that we don't fall into short-sighted thinking. We must have a vision for the next 50 or 100 years, and then we will continue to be "young".

Nearsight eye に陥ることなく、50 Years Xian、100 Years Xianを見統えたヴィジョンを持った上での、「青春」でありたいものです.

▲The Church of the Water is an early creation of Tadao Ando, ​​where the cross floats on the water, changing the scenery with the seasons of the year. The buildings Tadao Ando hopes to build are timeless buildings that will be remembered hundreds of years later. He said, "It is difficult for the human heart to live in this era. I want to build a place where the human heart can take root." Picture from: YouTuber- Aldo Garcia

Ai Faner: In your opinion, in the "youth" of Chinese architecture, how can a more free and courageous architecture be born?

Tadao Ando: The clues of creation are always hidden under our feet.

いつも、Create no handがかりは、自分たちの足元に潜んでいるものです。

Ai Faner: How can we form a building with Chinese characteristics and bring its architectural culture to the world?

Tadao Ando: We need to spend enough time to build architecture, and we need to interact and dialogue with the region that contains human life to build architecture. We not only want to build a single building, but also focus on cultivating the entire region and forming the unique personality of this region.

I think in this way, we can see more clearly the architectural style that can only be realized in China.

そのとき necessaryなのは、人间生活を含めたその地方との対话をしながらつくっていく、时间をかけた建筑のプロセスでででた建筑のプロセス。単体の建筑ではなく、それを含めた個報個這人の個人を育てていく中で、中国にしかできない建筑の姿がてといとくりとくまといとくとくてとい

▲ Guangdong Heyuan is about to open the final song of Tadao Ando Church-Church of Poetry. Tadao Ando believes that this is a work that can only appear here, beyond the fusion of previous architecture and nature. Picture from: Tadao Ando Institute of Architecture

Ai Faner: Contemporary young people are keen to punch cards, take pictures, and spread social networks in cutting-edge buildings. What do you think of this phenomenon?

Tadao Ando: This shows that people are becoming more and more interested in architecture that serves people. As the social economy matures, the development of information media is becoming the driving force behind it.

人々のためにあるべき建筑に対し、人々の顧愛が増しているという。 The maturity of social economics and the common, the information メディアの発达がその原动动となった.

▲ Tadao Ando's architecture allows people to return to nature in urban buildings, and to feel nature in the outer suburbs and deserted islands. The popularity of these buildings also fits the "escape" heart of contemporary young people-this is a kind of contemporary lifestyle Examine, or rather, a new kind of satisfaction. Video screenshot from: YouTuber- Aldo Garcia

Ai Faner: When buildings become "net celebrity attractions" and a popular lifestyle is born, do you think this is a good thing or a bad thing?

Tadao Ando: This fact itself should be gratifying. However, I worry that this tendency is too strong.

The building itself is consumed as a medium, which gives me a sense of crisis.

The status itself is は歓迎すべきことだろう.だが、この向が行き过ぎて、建筑それ自体がメディアとして、製貨されるような無會にて邊愛情を覚いええええ。

▲ "Church of Light" is one of Tadao Ando's most classic architectural works "Church Trilogy" and one of the most famous buildings in Japan. It still attracts people from all over the world to visit. A 1:1 replica of the Church of Light was also carried out in the global touring exhibition, which attracted many young people.

Ai Faner: This is also one of the changes in contemporary architecture. The relationship between people and people, people and buildings, and people and public spaces is constantly changing.

Tadao Ando: But the buildings and cities that record people's activities should not be consumed.


Ai Faner: What kind of concept do you think contemporary young people should look at architecture and cities?

Tadao Ando: Architecture and cities should be the common assets that we cultivate and pass on to the next generation.

▲UNESCO meditation space, the building implies world peace beyond all religions and sects. Picture from: Pablo Kujman


Ai Faner: You hope that everyone "will have a 100-year-old youth without losing the heart of the green apple, even if they are 100 years old." When you are 100 years old, what new possibilities do you think the "youth" of architecture has?

Tadao Ando: I don't know either. But I believe that architecture will continue to exist as a valuable human culture in the future.

For more reports on Tadao Ando, ​​welcome to read: " 80-year-old Tadao Ando rebuilds youth in China"
Thanks to Wenzhu International and IAM International Architecture Alliance for their support of Tadao Ando's series of reports.

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