Tadao Ando embeds open-air prayer hall around massive 15-year-old Buddha statue

July 28, 2017 by  
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Japanese architect Tadao Ando ‘s amazing work usually impresses, but his latest project is particularly breathtaking. Charged with creating a more serene environment for a beloved 44-feet-tall Buddha sculpture, which had stood as a solitary figure in Sapporo’s Makomanai Takino Cemetery for 15 years, Ando carefully embedded an amazing open-air prayer hall in the natural landscape around the iconic statue, keeping the Buddha’s head above ground as sign of reverence. Holding court on a large sloping hill surrounded by lavender fields, the stone statue is over 44-feet-tall and weighs 1,500 tons. For years it stood as a solitary figure in the field, but locals wanted to create a more harmonious atmosphere. Ando’s vision was to build a prayer hall around the figure without hiding it completely inside an artificial structure. The result is a respectful design of an open-air concrete prayer hall surrounding the Buddha that would leave the sculpture’s presence as it had been for years, but with a more purposeful setting better suited for visitors. Related: Destroyed Buddha statues in Afghanistan stand again thanks to holograms Ando’s design – what he refers to as “head-out Buddha” – comprises a stone rotunda reached by a long tunnel. According to him, the somber aesthetic of the landscape architectural project was intentional: “The design intention was to create a vivid spatial sequence, beginning with the long approach through the tunnel in order to heighten anticipation of the statue, which is invisible from the outside. When the hall is reached, visitors look up at the Buddha, whose head is encircled by a halo of sky at the end of the tunnel.” + Tadao Ando Via Fuzbiz Photography by Shigeo Ogawa and Makomanai Takinoreien Cemetery

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Tadao Ando embeds open-air prayer hall around massive 15-year-old Buddha statue

Antarctica plants show potential as natural sunscreen ingredients

July 28, 2017 by  
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Antarctica may be the last place you’d expect to find sunscreen ingredients, but scientists from Chile have a hunch the molecules that shield two species of Antarctic flowers from the harsh effects of the sun could also protect people and crops from the same. Researchers from Universidad de Santiago de Chile studying Colobanthus quitensis (a.k.a pearlwort) and Deschampsia antarctica (hair grass) under controlled conditions found that the plants were able to withstand high levels of ultraviolet radiation. A group of molecules in the flowers— Colobanthus in particular—act as a kind of solar filter to circumvent radiation damage, according to project leader Gustavo Zuniga. The only two that flower on the frosty continent, the plants typically grow in milder zones along its edges. Climate change is expanding their range, however, researchers said. Related: 40% of the top sunscreens don’t meet official guidelines for sun protection The university is on the lookout for partners who are able to use its findings to develop commercial products, such as natural sunscreen or human skin or gene therapy for agriculture. Testing could begin in earnest then. “It could be used in the not too distant future,” Zuniga told Reuters . “For example, for a crop that doesn’t tolerate increasing levels of radiation, that genetic information could be used to make the crop respond better.” + Universidad de Santiago de Chile Photos by Herson Rodriguez and Cassie Matias on Unsplash [Via Reuters ]

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Tokyo’s refurbished 17th century Buddhist temple marries modern and Edo period architecture

March 8, 2016 by  
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Japanese sculpture memorializes 18,000 people dead or missing after the 2011 earthquake

February 11, 2016 by  
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Japan’s CYIN House on stilts shelters a small winter garden like a canopy

December 31, 2015 by  
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Sasaki Architecture convert a former disco club into an office space with floating walls and pillars

April 30, 2015 by  
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Read the rest of Sasaki Architecture convert a former disco club into an office space with floating walls and pillars Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: concrete , converted warehouse , daylit office , floating walls , green renovation , Japan , Japanese architects , modern conversion , office space , Sasaki Architecture , Wall Cloud

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Sasaki Architecture convert a former disco club into an office space with floating walls and pillars

Snøhetta and SANAA both win Budapest National Gallery/Ludwig Museum competition

April 20, 2015 by  
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Read the rest of Snøhetta and SANAA both win Budapest National Gallery/Ludwig Museum competition Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Budapest museum competition , competitions , green architecture , Japanese architects , Ludwig Museum Budapest , museums , New National Gallery Budapest , Norwegian architects , SANAA , sloping roof , snohetta

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Snøhetta and SANAA both win Budapest National Gallery/Ludwig Museum competition

Tsuyoshi Kawata designs a charming curved house in Japan

February 13, 2015 by  
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Read the rest of Tsuyoshi Kawata designs a charming curved house in Japan Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: house in Shiga , Japan , Japanese architects , organic architecture , sculptural architecture , timber , timber frame , Tsuyoshi Kawata , wooden architecture

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Life Style Koubou’s House In Itsuura is a timber treehouse-like home in Japan

February 12, 2015 by  
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Life Style Koubou’s House In Itsuura is a timber treehouse-like home in Japan

Japan’s Eco Thon Chapel is a giant instrument that plays when the wind blows

February 6, 2015 by  
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