Zero Yen Houses

€ 39,50
A lean-to in an urban park, featuring a blue tarpaulin roof, a hinged door, and a bamboo blind. A car-shaped cardboard hut, lashed together with rope and sitting on a dolly. Temporary lodging under a bridge, incorporating a piece of playground equipment into its design. Each of these structures is an example of what Japanese artist and architect Kyohei Sakaguchi calls a "zero-yen house".Built by the homeless of Tokyo, Osaka, and Nagoya, zero-yen houses employ discarded and found materials, including pieces of wood and corrugated roofing, temple ornaments, blankets, shipping pallets, an umbrella, and those ubiquitous blue tarps. They also incorporate into their assembly the imminence of their disassembly: at any moment, they may have to be taken apart and moved.Since his days as a university student at the turn of the millennium, Sakaguchi has been studying the kinds of shelters that street people have created for themselves in Japan's three largest cities. Based in Tokyo, he appears to be obsessed with this peculiar and transient form of "vernacular architecture". Sakaguchi uses images, descriptions, and even facsimiles of the improvised homes of the homeless as a way of celebrating human resourcefulness and ingenuity. These dwellings, he tells us, are worthy of our interest and admiration rather than our indifference, our scorn, or even our pity. They can instruct us on an approach to architecture that is the reverse of overconsumption and resource depletion.
Author Kyohei Sakaguchi
Language Engels
Published 2004
Binding PBK
  • We ship daily
  • Payment options