Ukyo-ku, Kyoto
Hiroyuki Hirai

Standing in a plot along a major road in one of Kyoto’s suburbs, this building was designed as a showroom for automobiles. Covered by a 9m x 18m roof supported by a steel frame (2 x 4 spans), the showroom forms a single undivided space with a core of sanitary installations. To the east of the building, a front garden approximately the same size is located. Customers approach the showroom through the garden, coming from a deck raised by 1200m/m over ground level. Intending to create a diversity of sceneries inside the building’s simple box and in its surroundings, I used a variety of means to obstruct and, occasionally, blur the view. Examples are the transparent and semitransparent glass panes fixed directly to the frame with gaskets, the central core which has a certain independence as wall, the 1200m/m difference in elevation, the approach which changes direction by 90 degrees several times, and the curved roof which seems to be suspended over the steel frame. At the same time, I attempted to produce a building that is quietly and serenely there – to counterbalance the noise and restlessness which are not uncommon in today’s suburbia.