Japanese Architecture Architecture in Japan, the Kansai region . By Daniela
Kansai Kansai is located in the southern-central region of Japans main Island Honshu. In the north, Kansai borders the Sea of Japan, in the south the Kii Peninsula and the Pacific ocean.
Japan Kansai Region
More Information about Kansai
Kansai is called as the treasure house of Japan. Four Japanese National Parks are located in the Kansai region and many old buildings representing Japanese architecture.
Architecture in the Prehistoric
It is known that there was no examples of prehistoric architecture in Japan. Not many old texts contain information about architecture or buildings. Most houses then had floors made out of dirt or wood and roofs covered with thatch.
The oldest buildings stand in Japan, are found southwest of Nara. They are made out of wood. During the Asuka period, in the 7th century, many temples were built. One of them consists of 41 independent buildings; the most important ones are covered by a roofed cloister. The Kondo (or the hall) is a two-story building of post and beam construction covered with a hipped-gabbled roof made out of ceramic tiles.
Japanese Buddhist architecture adopted a method of building temples and houses in the mountains. Because of the irregular topography of these places, Japanese people had to rethink the way of constructing the buildings. The ceramic tile roofs were replaced with cypress-bark roofs, earthen floors were replaced with wood planks.
Halls- Phoenix Hall
Japanese people concentrated on building halls. A good example of a hall is the Phoenix Hall built in 1053, southwest to Kyoto. The hall was made of two 'L' shaped wing corridors and a tail corridor located next to a pond. Inside the building, on a platform a picture of Amid is installed. In that time, a new fashion for making things out of many pieces of carved wood appeared. The walls were covered with many sculptures and carvings.
During the Kamakura period, architecture of Japan had developed and made technological advances mostly taken from Korea and China. Because of the weather in Japan, earthquakes and other obstacles Japans architecture became unique. (Because buildings were made mostly from wood, they often got on fire.) After the political power was taken over, the main architecture style was a mixture of turrets and shinden-zukuri style .
Pagoda at Kamakura (left) Roof of Hasedera Temple (below)
After World War II, Japan needed to be rebuild.
Soon, new cities were built but were different then the usual buildings in Japan. New steel and concrete buildings pushed out the old, traditional buildings.
The architecture of Japanese buildings has changed many times by the aspects of culture and society; it was improved but stayed always beautiful. Today Japan has many skyscrapers and modern buildings.
All the information used in the presentation was found on: http://www.kippo.or.jp/culture_e/build/history.htm http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kansai http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Architecture_of_Japan