Satoshi Okada, House in Mt.Fuji, 2000. Courtesy: Satoshi Okada architects Inc.


Time Space Existence - Biennale Architettura 2016

Time Space Existence - Biennale Architettura 2016

Intensity of Architecture
With reason, one can explain something good; however, one cannot explain something beautiful. With reason, one can create something good; however, one cannot create something beautiful. Anything beautiful can create reason, but reason, in essence, cannot create anything beautiful.
Certain things are just so attractive that verbal expression is suspended and left powerless. Simply when we think of cutis anserine (bumped skin), whenever we encounter impressive things, and as long as the nervous system in our body is sound, it automatically responds before making logic for words. Certainly, there is something beautiful to move many peoples beyond nationality, even though, according to Karl Marx, human senses are more or less infected by history, society, or culture in each nation. The same goes for architecture. And I believe, it is profoundly related to the topic: Time-Space-Existence, a universal topic to ourselves.
Something impressive stimulates a human emotion, by which one can create a certain image full of delightfulness. Indeed, in the past, the emotion used to be regarded as something inferior, and it should be an object controlled by reason. In re-thinking of emotion, we may refer to Gilles Deleuze who described emotion like the God in humankind: ”Only emotion differs in nature from both intelligence and instinct, from both intelligent individual egoism and quasi-instinctive social pressure... Emotion in fact precedes all representation, itself generating new ideas. It does not have, strictly speaking, an object, but merely an essence that spreads itself over various objects, animals, plants and the whole of nature... Although personal, emotion is not individual; transcendent, it is like the God in us” 1.
It is worthwhile to notice that the emotion works, by and large, “unconsciously;” because the unconscious impulse arises beyond conscious reactions of making logics or whatever concerning a human reason. What is important is that unconscious impulse is deeply tied up with a human intuition. According to the advanced brain science, the unconsciousness gives birth to something creative. Therefore, the human intuition is essential for creating something new; in other words, creativeness of humankind.
I think we should respect something enigmatic intuitively, based on your emotion. It directly tells you whether it is factitious or not. At least once in your life, you would have experienced something enigmatically spiritual with your senses. On such an encounter, you might have touched the essence of a thing, which now I am focusing on.
In my quest for architecture as an existence that suspends a human logic in thinking, I named the nature of this enigmatic attraction “intensity of architecture”2. I feel and have felt that intensity might be the key to approach the essence of an object of architecture and any other arts. The intensity has no relationship with nationality, religion, politics, economics, aesthetics, thoughts, or whatever based upon a human thinking, but it relates to momentary senses of a human body. Architecture of intensity must be seductive all the more because it is beyond expression by human words.
1 Gille Deleuze, Le Bergsonisme, Paris 1966
2 Satoshi Okada, “Intensity of Architecture,” SATOSHI OKADA, Electaarchitettura,
Milano 2009


  • Title: Satoshi Okada, House in Mt.Fuji, 2000. Courtesy: Satoshi Okada architects Inc.
  • Creator: Photo: Hiroyuki Hirai

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