I am really interested in these sorts of spaces. In this case, these is an old brutalist office building in Kanazawa, Japan that was purchased in 2019 by artist Hiraki Sawa. The original intent was to turn it into a co-working space, but eventually the idea evolved into a hybrid “co-being” space that can be rented as a place to stay and/or as a place to facilitate creativity.
The space itself was left mostly raw and exposed, but neon movable walls were inserted by AB Rogers Design that allow you to configure the volumes as you’d like. What’s interesting about spaces like these is that they enable play and experimentation. Maybe it also makes money, or maybe it doesn’t. But that doesn’t seem to be the main point.
The point is to empower creativity. And finding spaces to do this can be tough in competitive markets where demand is consistently outstripping supply. Oftentimes you need some slack in the system so that there’s literal breathing room for new ideas, or rich people who can make it so.
Whatever the case, I am a believer that when given the opportunity, people will generally find a way to imagine and create. So if you happen to find yourself in Kanazawa and would like to book this space, which is called Fish Market, click here. Guests are being asked to submit a request explaining how and why they’d like to use the space.
It’ll be fun to see what this leads to.
Photos: Takumi Ota via AB Rogers Design
I was in my last year of undergrad at MIT and my Arts and Design professor came to me in the architecture studio and offered me a 3000 sf space in legendary Building 20 (known as the “Magical Incubator, which was a temporary timber structure hastily erected during World War II for research purposes) for a semester. He said “It’s yours – you do with it what you want.” The experience was magic – I did 18′ long, 8′ high drawings, built sculptures and examined curved forms in ways I had never imagined before. I think it formed a basis for creative thinking that is still with me today, decades later.