photo Toshiyuki YANO (Nacasa & Partners Inc.,)
Beppu city, Oita, Japan
PLATFORM01 and PLATFORM02 were created by BEPPU PROJECT, an arts NPO based in Beppu City, Oita Prefecture, as one of the venues for the international arts festival complex that will be held in various locations in Beppu.
<The concept of the constellation-shaped art complex spreading to the area>
The concept of this constellation-shaped art complex spreading to the area is based on the culture of the town baths that dot the center of the city. Vacant storefronts scattered throughout the area will be reused through renovation. The various art spaces created by the renovation will be connected like a constellation, and between them, we aim to establish spaces and mechanisms for welfare employment support facilities and young entrepreneurs to develop a concentration of service and exchange industries rather than a mere collection of stores. In order to that, we planned some art centers that are spread within walking distance of the central part of the city to make visitor tour around whole of the area. This art centers will have no collection, but will have an artist-in-residence program in which domestic and foreign artists and local craftsmen selected in conjunction with an advisory body of outside experts will stay for a certain period of time to work on projects, a video lab for single-screening, a small theater with a recording studio for music and dance, and so on. It will be an art complex with a mechanism to make the area move fluidly. (The above is from BEPPU PROJECT’s “The concept of the constellation-shaped art complex spreading to the area”)
PLATFORM01 is a converted space for dancing and exhibitions from former souvenir store. The interior of the store, built in the 1950s, was characterized by magnificent wooden showcases and an overabundance of lighting fixtures for its size. Therefore, the walls, ceiling, signage, and exterior walls, including the built-in showcase, were painted silver, and the floor was covered with silver sheets. Also, all the existing lighting fixtures were left in place, adjusted to be used in different ways, and four different colors of acrylic covers were attached to the fluorescent lights irregularly. The traces of the store’s former life are once established as an interior with a silver paint job, and new activities take place above these traces. The silver color reflects the activity and changes the look of the space, while at the same time, coupled with the neon-colored lighting, remains the mysteriousness of Beppu.
PLATFORM02 is a partial renovation of a building built in the twenties to a gallery and video lab. That was previously divided into two floors, the second floor was eliminated so that the upper and lower floors become one piece of space to accommodate taller exhibits, to allow light to shine through openings that were only available on the second floor, and to show the exhibits from multiple angles. The hidden parts of the ceiling, including the remaining beams, were painted silver and the rest of the interior was painted white. The silver paint highlights the surface scratches and patterns on the beams, revealing the building’s age. The first floor facade facing the shopping arcade has a charcoal gray frame, so that people passing through the arcade can look into the interior and participate in the exhibition.