Oyamazaki Museum (Asahi Beer
Oyamazaki Villa Museum) 5-3 Koaza-zenihara
Tadao Ando 1995
The architecture of the
Oyamazaki Museum consists of both old and new: an existing Western
Tudor-style villa owned by Shotaro Kaga, an entrepreneur in Osaka, who
built this villa in the 1920's based on an architectural style he had seen
when he studied in England; and a new addition by Tadao Ando.
This new addition is as much a
part of the landscape as it is an exhibition space. In order to avoid
overwhelming the existing villa, the tranquil concrete geometric volumes
of Ando are set within the ground in close proximity to the existing
building so that from the exterior they read more as elements
strategically placed within the landscape rather than a building.
These geometric elements, which
can be seen in plan from the upper level of the villa, consist of a
horizontal rectangular volume that contains circulation leading from the
existing villa, a smaller vertically oriented rectangular volume which
contains an elevator and a cylindrical volume containing an exhibition
gallery. When seen from above these elements blend into the landscape with
their roofs covered in crushed stone and grass.
The entry to the museum is
through the existing villa to a concrete stair which descends down to the
new exhibition gallery. At the end of the stair is a view to the landscape
and the rectangular concrete volume is lined with clerestory windows so
that there are also views of the sky and natural light that enters to this
below-ground level. This space changes in character through the movement
of the sun. At the bottom of the stairs is the entry to the gallery, a
cylindrical volume of about 6 meters in diameter.
When seen from the garden, which
contains the man-made and the natural, the concrete rectangular
circulation volume becomes a wall next to which a cascade of water falls
to lead to a small pond of water reflecting the entire volume. The height
of the concrete wall diminishes with the clerestory glazing which allows
one to see through the volume to the sky; its opaque material at its base
reads more like a carefully placed stone. The full-height vertical glazing
at the end of the volume allows the exterior to flow into the interior and
the interior to the exterior, the axis aligned with a stone path that
meanders throughout the garden.
Kari Silloway 2004 (updated 2007)
thanks to Ko Teramoto for translating directions on how to visit.
How to visit
From Osaka take JR Kyoto Line
(Express 25 minutes) from Osaka Station to JR Yamazaki Station. From here
the museum can be found by walking 10 min. to the north or by taking the
free museum bus which runs every hour between 10:05-4:05 at 05, 25, 45
Or from Osaka take the Hankyu
Kyoto Line from Hankyu Umeda Station (Express 36 minutes) to Hankyu O-yamazaki
Station; from here walk 10 minutes to the north.
From Kyoto take JR Kyoto Line
from JR Kyoto Station (Express 14 minutes) to JR Yamazaki Station or take
Hankyu Kyoto Line from Kawaramachi Station (Express 24 minutes) to Hankyu