Architect Aoki's Office Wins Good Design Award

Jun Aoki, "the most intellectual architect in Japan," wins Japan's top design prize for his off-kilter Tokyo office building, the SIA Aoyama
Japanese architect, Jun Aoki.

When Jun Aoki's new building, SIA Aoyama, opened in Tokyo earlier this year, it wasn't immediately obvious who the tenants were. Standing 60 meters tall, the smooth all-white tower looked as if it might be apartments or offices or a hotel. And there was something slightly off-kilter about its design: Instead of conventional wraparound windows, Aoki had created large, square punch-out windows of varying sizes that didn't seem to line up. From outside, it's difficult to tell where each level begins and ends. "It looks like an 18-story building, but because each floor has 6-meter-high ceilings, it's only 9," says the 52-year-old Aoki. "I like the gap between appearance and reality."

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