The Fukita Pavilion with its cafe and restaurant was built within the grounds of a shrine near the Fukuda Harbor in Shodoshima. The adjacent former Fukuda Elementary School was reborn in 2013 as the Fukutake House, along with the Setouchi Triennale.
There was a gym in the schoolyard of the Fukutake House, and a shrine and its grounds right next to it. The grounds of the shrine, the schoolyard and the gym were put to loving use by the local residents. We therefore considered a plan to separate the cafe into a kitchen and seating area, placing the exterior seating within the grounds of the shrine, and the interior seating and kitchen area in the gym to create flow from the shrine to the elementary school.
The outdoor seating area inside the shrine grounds is the gazebo called the Fukita Pavilion, a semi-outdoor space made of two steel plates that look as if the decomposed granite surface of the shrine premises had peeled and lifted upward.
The goal of building within the shrine premises was to create a structure without a foundation that is light and low to the ground, and feels as if it can be easily moved. Its structure involves curved steel plates like the bottom of a ship placed on the ground, covered by a steel plate roof which sags with its own weight. The two curved steel plates are welded together at the edge of the overlap to form a shape where one plate supports the other. The steel floor plate is kept in place by the steel roof; the steel roof, with a large span that sags in the middle, is in turn supported by the steel floor plate.
The interior and exterior spaces made from the two steel plates become an extension of the shrine grounds, playground equipment, seating and resting area, and children’s playground. The goal was to create an open structure where not only the children, but also the wind and wildlife can pass through.
Although the pavilion is a permanent structure, our goal was to make it look like it was simply dropped and installed, so that it is light and playful like a playground equipment or a landscaping element. We chose a beige color for its tone to keep in line with the decomposed granite of the ground and the palette of the surrounding environment.