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Shima Kitchen Teshima Island, Japan by Abe Ryo

outdoor theatre

Food and art go well together, but with architecture, sun and a little fresh air the Shima Kitchen, designed by Abe Ryo becomes possible. The project is created around an old house that was converted into an open kitchen, whilst an adjacent warehouse was refitted into an art gallery. The assemblage was unified by the extension of light shading canopy weaving around existing fig and persimion trees to create an outdoor theatre in the traditional NOH style. Its components include its stage (butai), veranda (hashikake) and gallery (sajiki).

The sunshade makes the project aesthetically interesting and is created from charred timber panels of a kind that are traditionally used to clad houses on the island. They have been loosely tied to an elegant supporting steel framework to allow them to flutter slightly in the wind like the feathers of a bird. The form of the canopy is seen as a swirl flowing around the buildings and into the landscape. It reminds me of some of the beautiful yet tragic scenes of the tsunami sweeping flotsam into swirls of matchwood.

The Shima Kitchen provides a quiet, serene space where those as well as other memories can be contemplated and explored through the medium of the arts, architecture and food provided from the bounty of the surrounding land.

Inside the theatre

Distant perspective

Building plans

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