Federico Herrero's murals in 5 floors of staircase and rooftop at Art Center Art Towada in Japan
Art Center is a central institution of the Art Towada project, and as "an open institution to offer new experiences through art,” it is an institution for art exhibitions as well as to promote support and communication for cultural and artistic activities. This building provides various features such as artwork spaces, gallery spaces, a cafe, a shop, a library, and civic activity support spaces.
There was a proposal competition of Art Center planning between five architects on May 30, 2005. The five candidates were as follows: Atelier Bow-Wow, Kumiko Inui, Ryue Nishizawa, Sousuke Fujimoto, and Makoto Yokomizo. From the proposals submitted, Art Center Designer Selection Board (Chairperson: Keiji Kitahara, professor at Hirosaki University) selected the planning by Ryue Nishizawa.
One of the unique aspects of the architecture is that each exhibition room or gallery space is built as "a house for art", and is independent from each other and dispersed in the site. The architect was inspired such dispersive composition from a characteristic of Kancho-gai Street where open spaces and buildings appear alternately. By creating various sizes of constructions at the site, the designer also retained continuity from Kancho-gai Street where large and small buildings are lining. From this unique layout of the constructions, event and open-air exhibition spaces are formed in the site. Each space is connected with glass-made corridors and it gives impression as if Art Center itself is a town. Also the spaces, where art works will be exhibited, have many glass windows facing various directions, so that the space constructions give wide open feeling as if the art works in the spaces seem like exhibited to the town.
Art Centre Arts Towada includes permanent site specific commsions by Jeonghwa Choi, Jim Lambie, Ron Mueck, Mariele Neudecker, Federico Herrero, Shuji Yamamoto, Borre Saethre, Changkyum Kim, Jennifer Steinkamp, Hans Op de Beeck, Tomas Saraceno, Yoko Ono, Shin Morikita, AnaLaura Alaez, Noboru Tsubaki, Takashi Kuribayashi, Do-Ho Suh, Paul Morrison, Michael Lin, Mitsuhiro Yamagiwa, Kyota Takahashi. Curated by Tetsu Nagata.