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Australia House, Niigatta Japan by Andrew Burns Architect.

The prow.

The “Australia House” is located in the snowy district of Niigata, about three hours north of Tokyo. The original property was destroyed in the massive earthquake of March 2011. The ruins were adopted by the Australian Embassy in Tokyo who have created this interesting building as a symbol of healing and transformation.

Inside is a gallery, studio and a workshop and is currently showing the work of the artist Brook Andrew. The building was designed by Australian architect Andrew Burns and won the competition from 154 entries judged by Tadao Ando. Its unusual geometry and steep roof is in part a response to the heavy snowfall the area experiences. Up to 1.5m in a single day!

The project was supported by the Tokamachi city council, which supports the Australia-Japan Foundation, The International Culture Interchange Appreciation Society, the Australian Embassy in Tokyo as well as the local population.

It has become a major attraction in the 2012 Echigo-Tsumari Triennial.

Entrance view.

Back of house

Rear elevation.

View into gallery.

The studio area.

Looking down!

Aerial view

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