Mies van der Rohe and Japan. An association
This study investigates contentual parallels between the concept of space used by Mies van der Rohe and space in traditional Japanese residential buildings. It is divided into 9 chapters and 3 horizontal plot lines. M stands for Mies van der Rohe, J for Japan, T for Transfer.
The point of origin of the investigation is the development of space in the work of Mies van der Rohe, theme of chapters M1 – M3. The Miesian Oeuvre is divided into 3 periods of creation, for each of which one representative project is chosen for the study of spatial phenomenons. M1 focuses on the project of a brick country house, M2 on the pavilion for the world fair in Barcelona, M3 on House Farnsworth.
In the second horizontal plot line J1 – J3, aspects of the 'traditional Japanese house' and of Japanese culture are viewed side by side with the formulation of space in Mies’ work, assigned to plot line M as 'associations'. J1 considers the fundamental principles of the Villa Katsura, J2 considers the characteristics of Japanese lightweight design and of the house as a set of perceptions, J3 considers the phenomenon of the 'one-room' in Japan.
The Transfer plot line points out different ways of exchange between Japan and the west with possible connections to Mies van der Rohe in the chapters T1 – T3. T1 is about the role of Frank Lloyd Wright and the De Stijl-group, T2 about the connections between Japan and Bauhaus, T3 about world fairs with emphasis on the Japanese contribution to the world fair in Chicago, 1893.
The 9 chapters of this study can also be read connecting one creational period of Mies van der Rohe with aspects of Japanese culture and the associated intermediaries between east and west.