The LVMH Kodomo Art Maison is a new community center dedicated to children in Fukushima to support disaster relief efforts. The two-story building was designed and built by Shigeru Ban and the Voluntary Architect’s Network. It recently opened in July, 2014 with an official ceremony attended by Shigeru Ban along with the mayor of Soma City and the prime minister of Bhutan. Soma Children’s Orchestra played a concert in the open air courtyard in the center of the building. The project was funded by the Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy group and is a part of the Group’s initiative to support the children in the area devastated by the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami.
Donut-shaped, the Komodo Art Maison children’s center features a courtyard patio, a library for storytelling sessions and a reading room with space to grow vegetables along the exterior wall in a vertical potted system. The roof is tilted up and angled towards the central patio while the northern side of the building is topped with photovoltaic panels to generate electricity. Translucent windows allow daylighting, but cut down on glare and overheating. The furniture inside was also designed by Ban and consists of a collection of paper tube and corrugated paper tables and chairs.
Images ©Voluntary Architect’s Network