Tadao Ando: Youth

Curator:Takaaki Mizutani (Japan) Ma Weidong (China)

Exhibit Period:October 12, 2021 - January 9, 2022

Location:Minsheng Art Museum, Beijing No.9 Jiuxianqiao North Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing

Sponsor:Architecture and Culture Society of China, Minsheng Art Museum, Tadao Ando Architecture Exhibition Executive Committee

Co-hosting:CA-GROUP, Beijing Contemporary Art Foundation, Tadao Ando Architect & Associates

Co-organizer:IAM, One-tenth

Supporting:Japan Foundation, CMBC, CCCCPS

Tadao Ando: Youth is the most comprehensive retrospective of Tadao Ando's architectural career to date, opens at the Minsheng Art Museum in Beijing on October 12, 2021. Through exquisite architectural models, detailed design manuscripts, numerous exclusive films travel sketches and photographs, this exhibition traces the footsteps of the master Tadao Ando, and contemplates with him the architecture, the environment, the city, and the only earth we have under the epidemic, and reawaken to the richness of architectural culture and the infinite beauty of architectural art. The exhibition space was designed by the Tadao Ando Architect & Associates, with a unique layout, structure, and the viewing route that reflect the concept of Tadao Ando's architectural practice for half a century, to create a space that"can only be presented in this place", and brings an"Ah! So this is how architecture works!"kind of feeling to the viewers. 

Tadao Ando explains the "Youth" 


From the 1970s to the present, Tadao Ando has been at the forefront of architectural activity. His works, which have been produced all over the world, have been widely acclaimed for their high spatial quality and for their perfect fit with places. The most characteristic feature is Tadao Ando's consistent design philosophy. The works of the artist range from the root themes of light and geometry distilled from his early residential works, to the urban architecture of the city, which implies the traditional Japanese spatial concept of "Ma" , to the architecture of regionalism, which creates new relationships in response to the culture of the site.


Since he began his architectural activities as "Urban Guerrilla", Tadao Ando has impacted the architectural world with his many avant-garde works. Since the mid-1990s, he has been involved in projectsthat have grown in scale, and have become more diverse and public. If one were to evaluate his work in various fields, one of the benchmarks would be the challenge to the city. In the 1970s, Tadao Ando challenged the cityfrom the "grassroots" through small residential and commercial buildings, and how did he carry on his spirit of struggle in the world-famous metropolis? Section 2 will introduce the achievementsof Tadao Ando's urban challenge through his projects in various cities in China.


Throughout Tadao Ando's public architecture works, the theme of Section 3 is "LANDSCAPE CREATION" as opposed to the benchmark division of "URBAN CHALLENGE" in Section 2. The term landscape or scenery is not used in the superficial sense of landscape design. Rather, it is a concept that encompasses multiple values, including the communal memory of a place that survives. Tadao Ando, after carefully understanding the connotations of the landscape, used an original architectural approach to highlight its character and give new value to the place. The most widespread practice of this architectural approach is the Naoshima series of projects that span 30 years.


Tadao Ando categorizes his work as culturalism, emphasizing that his own existence is but a part of the historical association of architecture. This attitude is perhaps most evident in his projects that focus on the reconstruction of historical buildings. While paying tribute to the time engraved in the original building, Tadao Ando makes every effort to preserve it as a memory, and at the same time hopes to present a new modern space inside, inspiring a dialogue between the old and the new, and making people expect the power of connecting time from the past to the present.

"Tadao Ando: Youth" ©️ CA-GROUP, Photo by Tian Fangfang


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