Japanese culture is said to share a close and harmonious relationship with nature.
That aesthetic is certainly evident throughout these 10 modern Japanese homes, where the architects have successfully managed to fill the residences with light and nature, while still providing their clients with a zen-like sense of privacy.
This minimalist home in Kanagaw is perched on a terraced platform in a residential neighborhood overlooking the 15th-century Odawara castle. Designed by CUBO Design Architect, all the core elements for daily living exist on the second story—bringing views of Odawara into every room.
House K is a minimal residence located in Japan’s southern-most island, Kyushu. Designed by YDS Architects, the theme was inspired by the transition of time through light and shadow—creating a space where the residents can feel connected to nature throughout the home. An internal courtyard brings natural lighting into the living areas and features skylights that offer light without compromising privacy.
House in Iwakura is a contemporary home designed by Airhouse. Located in Aichi, Japan, the site is surrounded by buildings on three sides and faces a park. The unique layout brings a sense of the outside in and provides individual living spaces for each of the family members. The rooms on the second floor are connected via bridges, giving a loft-like feeling to the house.
When Daisuke Tokuyama told Makoto Tanijiri that he wanted a light-filled home in Hiroshima for his family of five—the Japanese architect had a very creative solution. Skipping conventional walls altogether, he wrapped the entire three-story steel structure in polycarbonate plastic. "We were able to mix categories that are usually separate," says Tanijiri. "Walls became windows and windows became walls."
Designed by Airhouse, this minimalist home in Aichi meets the client’s request for a home-cum-office. The high-ceilinged, open living/dining/kitchen space is used as the homeowner’s web design office—which still surprisingly keeps a sense of separation between work space and living space.
This three-story minimalist residence in Kanagawa was designed by PANDA. The wooden home features skylights on the upper level, providing additional natural light without compromising the homeowner’s privacy.
# House is a modern residence located in a quiet neighborhood in Osaka. Designed by ninkipen!, the detached family home centers around an internal courtyard where the homeowner’s children can play.
This single-story residence designed by TENK takes advantage of its location in a secluded neighborhood in Koichi Prefecture. The interior consists of exposed ceiling beams that conceal an array of track lighting, while large floor-to-ceiling windows allow the homeowners to enjoy both natural light and their scenic surroundings.
The short period of time when cherry blossoms are in bloom is a time of year that all Japanese treasure. So, when Yabashi Architects & Associates were told by their Saga-based client that they wanted a home where they could enjoy their own private view of the row of cherry blossom trees lining the side of their property, the architects set out to design them a minimalist home that would fit the bill.