At the beginning of this month, I had the great opportunity of attending Kengo Kuma’s lecture at UC Berkeley, as part of the CED arch lecture series for the fall semester. I was pretty excited too, since this is the first time that I went to an architect’s lecture. To make things better, I get to see Kengo Kuma! Indeed, he is one of the more reputable architects of this generation.
To be honest, I was not really familiar of his projects prior to the lecture. The lecture was definitely an eye-opener, for it gave me a good sense of his design principles. Plain and simple, he is an innovator in the field of architectural design. The most prevalent thing that I noticed in his projects was the strict usage of materials, and the repetition of elements. He also does not shy away from experimenting with unconventional materials. He strives to be as innovative as possible, either through technology or design. However, he still maintains connection with his cultural roots through integrating traditional Japanese architecture and construction techniques, and this is what I really admire about his projects.
There is something about his projects that entice the senses, especially in terms of visual appeal. I hope that I’ll be able to visit some of his projects someday. Truly, Kengo Kuma will be one of my inspirations in the years to come.