Sandwich and Kohei Nawa Collaborate on Kohtei Pavilion in Japan

The structure is positioned above a sea of locally quarried stones. All images courtesy Nobutada Omote.

Kyoto, Japan–based design practice Sandwich has crafted the new Kohtei art pavilion inside the Shinshoji Zen Museum and Gardens in Fukuyama, Japan. Designed in collaboration with artist Kohei Nawa, the wooden volume mirrors the form of a ship’s hull in tribute to workers who have perished at sea or as the result of industrial accidents.


Image courtesy Nobutada Omote.

Built using traditional Japanese techniques and materials, the Kohtei pavilion is raised off the ground by two pillars, establishing an area of shelter beneath it laid with locally quarried stone to represent the sea and connect the design with the landscape. The exterior is clad with Japanese cypress shingles applied via the Kokera-buki technique, which employs the fastening of thin tiles using bamboo nails. The persimmon roof feature 340,000 shingles, while the soffit comprises 250,000 smooth tiles.


Image courtesy Nobutada Omote.

The pavilion can be accessed via a footbridge that leads visitors through a small entrance into the darkened interior for a contemplative experience.