BY GRAPHIC CONCRETE
UPOPOY National Ainu Museum and Park is located in Shiraoi, Hokkaido, Japan. It serves as the national center for the Ainu culture - an invaluable culture in Japan that is on the verge of extinction. The National Ainu Park is an open-air museum where visitors can experience various elements of Ainu culture - a culture that has been cultivated amidst nature.
The Museum and Park project was initiated in October 2017 and finally completed in July 2020. The whole landscape has been designed by the famous Japanese lands-cape architect group, Takano Landscape Planning Co. Ltd. An area of Graphic Concrete walls is located at the entrance of the park, inviting visitors to enter the world of the Ainu people.
“It is such a great honor to be acclaimed by visitors and by the Ainu Museum that it is such a wonderful entrance space for the first national symbolic park of the Ainu”
- Mr. Shuichi Murata, CEO of Takano Landscape Planning Co. Ltd.
The design motif on the Graphic Concrete wall is the local nature. The scenery changes from the waterside to woodlands and deep forest. Various local plants and animal habitats are illustrated on the beautiful Graphic Concrete walls.
The design was printed on paper in full scale and carefully examined during the planning stage. Having a full-scale mock-up concrete slab helped to determine the appropriate contrast between the smooth and exposed aggregate surfaces, the sunlight reflections on the surface and illumination at night time.
According to the Mr. Shuichi Murata, CEO of Takano Landscape Planning Co.Ltd., this was the first project of Takano Landscape Planning Co. Ltd to use Graphic Concrete. Using concrete as a built material in contrast to the surrounding nature was one of the reasons why Graphic Concrete was chosen. It enabled the making of a silhouette natural background. “You feel that you are in the landscape where the Ainu live when the shadow play of nature and your own shadow is projected on the wall. Graphic Concrete has great advantages, it can express such sophisticated and detailed graphics and it is a very long-lasting and durable material. It is such a unique and attractive technique, and not at all common to the local visitors.”
Architecture: Takano Landscape Planning Co.,Ltd
Color: Light / Dark
Pattern: Designer’s own non-repetitive pattern
Design: Takano Landscape Planning Co.,Ltd
Developer: Hokkaido Regional Development Bureau (MLIT)
Address: 2-3 Wakakusa, Shiraoi, Hokkaido, Japan
Photo: Lyuta Takana / Graphic Concrete